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NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN: Nader To Fuck It All Up

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[Artwork by MILA JOHNSON]

POLITICO: Ralph Nader, 74, announced on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he’ll run as a third-party, anti-corporate candidate for president this fall, which would be likely to drain votes from the Democratic nominee and provide a huge boon to Republicans. Democrats say they will work behind the scenes — and use court challenges, if necessary — to try to thwart his access to ballots. The longtime consumer activist said on “Meet the Press” that Washington has become “corporate occupied territory” and that none of the current presidential candidates are sufficiently addressing corporate crime, labor rights or Pentagon waste. “In that context, I have decided to run for president,” he told host Tim Russert. MORE

nadercrusader_spoiler_icon.jpgRELATED: Ralph Nadar is the person in the U.S. that I most HATE. I say hate with every bone in my body. This SOB has attacked every car I have owned. I loved V.W., I loved my Pinto, I loved my Suzuki. He has interfered with me at every step of the way. He gave us George Bush Twice. He is an egotistical ******* in every sense of the word. He does not care about America – He only cares about himself. He thinks he has something to say but he does not. He only inspires hatred in those like myself who resent his intrusion into our lives. I leave him alone and I only wish he would leave me alone. [via POLITCO comments section]

WIKIPEDIA: In the 2000 presidential election in Florida, George W. Bush defeated Al Gore by 537 votes. Nader received 97,421 votes. Proponents of this argument claim that Nader pulled votes from Al Gore, and this tilted the election in Bush’s favor. Nader’s votes in New Hampshire and Florida exceeded the difference in votes between Gore and Bush.[37] A New Hampshire exit poll indicated that Nader’s presence in the race was not a factor in Bush’s victory in that state.[38] Winning either statebush-gore.jpg would have given Gore the presidency, and while critics claim this shows Nader tipped the election to Bush, Nader has called that claim “a mantra — an assumption without data.”[39] Michael Moore at first argued that Florida was so close that votes for any of seven other candidates could also have switched the results[40], but in 2004 joined the view that Nader had helped make Bush President.[41][42] Other Nader supporters argued that Gore was primarily responsible for his own loss. [43] But Eric Alterman, perhaps Nader’s most persistent critic, has regarded such apologist arguments as beside the point: “One person in the world could have prevented Bush’s election with his own words on the Election Day 2000.” [44] MORE

howarddean_howard.thumbnail.gifALSO: WASHINGTON (CNN) Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean accused Republican presidential front-runner John McCain of trying to skirt campaign finance laws Sunday by trying to opt out of public financing for his primary campaign. Dean told reporters that McCain has already used the prospect of nearly $6 million in federal matching funds — which he now says he won’t claim — as collateral for a January campaign loan and to obtain automatic ballot access inmccaingry2.jpg every state. Dean said he was filing a complaint with the Federal Election Commission to block McCain from quitting the public financing system, which imposes a spending cap on candidates. “The law is very, very clear,” Dean said. “He cannot be let out of the matching fund program if he has already used the promise of matching funds for loan collateral, and it’s already clear from his FEC report that he has used that promise.”FEC Chairman David Mason raised similar questions about the loan agreement in a letter to the McCain campaign last week. But the Arizona senator’s campaign has said its existing request with the FEC was never part of the terms of the loan, merely the possibility of future payouts. MORE

bush_war.thumbnail.jpgWILIAM ‘THE BLOODY’ KRISTOL ON FOX NEWS SUNDAY: [Obama’s] riding a wave of euphoria. She [Clinton] needs to puncture it. The way you puncture euphoria is reality, or to be more blunt, fear. I recommend to Senator Clinton the politics of fear…[Obama] wants to negotiate on January 21st with Ahmadinejad. Here’s what Ahmadinejad has said about blowing up Israel.”

obamaiheartusa.jpgUK TELEGRAPH:It is a measure of Hillary Clinton’s desperation that she should have switched from elevated, presidential language to direct attacks on her opponent. In politics, risks are generally run by candidates who are losing. “Shame on you, Barack Obama,” said Mrs Clinton, claiming that his campaign had deliberately misrepresented some of her policies. It seems unlikely that her new tactic will work. Americans like upbeat, positive politicians…From the moment he came to public attention during the 2004 Democratic Convention, he has repeated the same message. In a country where political divisions have taken on aspects of a culture war, he offers reconciliation.As he said in 2004, in a passage that has since been replayed over and over: “The pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue states: red for Republicans, blue for Democrats. But I’ve got news for them. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don’t like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states. We coach little league in the blue states and, yes, we’ve got some gay friends in the red states.” Mrs Clinton finds it much harder to talk this way. She is, at heart, the tribal politician who famously blamed her husband’s woes not on his concupiscent behaviour but on a “vast Right-wing conspiracy”. MOREhillarywickedwitch.jpg

WASHINGTON POST: PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A day after she angrily criticized Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton delighted a crowd of supporters here by playfully mocking her opponent. “I could stand up here and say, let’s just get everybody together, let’s get unified, the sky will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing, and everyone will know we should do the right thing, and the world will be perfect,” she told a crowd that laughed at and cheered the jab at Obama’s hopeful rhetoric. “… You are not going to wave a magic wand and have the special interests disappear.” MORE

NEW YORK TIMES: As for countering what she sees as the empty Obama brand of hope, she offers only a chilly void: Abandon hope all ye who enter here. This must be the first presidential candidate in history to devote so much energy to preaching against optimism, against inspiring language and — talk about bizarre — against democracy itself. No sooner does Mrs. Clinton lose a state than her campaign belittles its voters as unrepresentative of the country. MORE

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“I’m melting, melting! Oh what a world, what a world!”

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