Monday, October 27, 2008

Strange bedfellows - Sarah Palin and Ralph Nader?

I just ran into an interesting tidbit, but let's back up for a minute before I get to it.

You'll recall a previous tempest in a teapot regarding Sarah Palin's ties with the Alaskan Independence Party. At a minimum, she appeared via a video at a Party convention. Some allege that she was, using 1950s terminology, a card-carrying member.

Daniel Herman was outraged:

Can Sarah Palin say the Pledge of Allegiance in good faith? Can she take the Oath of Office in good faith? No, she can’t....

As you HNN readers probably know, Sarah Palin has supported the idea of allowing Alaskans to vote on whether to leave the U.S. McCain’s flacks insist that she never really wanted Alaska to leave, but even they--extraordinary liars--refuse to say whether she supported a vote on the matter. No one can ask her about it because she won’t dare talk to the press, but obviously she has supported such a vote, else the McCain people would have said otherwise.

More evidence: as you also probably know, in 2006, Palin told members of the Alaskan Independence Party (as in independence from the U.S.) that they were “inspirational,” adding “God bless you and keep up the good work.” Their chairman called her “our candidate.” For seven years her husband, her “closest advisor,” was a member of the AIP (see the LA Times of September 3, 2008).

What most Americans do not know is that the very IDEA that a state has the right to leave the union is an attack on the Constitution.

So I was surprised when I saw this affiliations list at

Ralph Nader

Office Seeking: President

Party: No Party Affiliation, Independent, Write-In, Natural Law Party, Alaskan Independence, Ecology Party of Florida, New Mexico Independent Party, Nominated by Petition, Nomination by other than Primary, Peace, Populist

What? Nader on the Alaskan Independence Party ballot?

But it turns out that this is in error. According to the Alaska Division of Elections, the Presidential/Vice Presidential candidates and listed party affiliations are as follows:

Chuck Baldwin / Darrell Castle (Alaskan Independence)
Bob Barr / Wayne A. Root (Libertarian)
John McCain / Sarah Palin (Republican)
Ralph Nader / Matt Gonzalez (Independent)
Barack Obama / Joe Biden (Democrat)

Apparently some votesmart person confused "Alaskan Independence" with "Independent." But how does Nader feel about the right of states to secede? As far as I know, he's said nothing on the matter, but back in 2003 he wrote about states' rights:

For decades Republicans and conservative Democrats were vehement in their defense of states' rights. Federal legislation on everything from civil rights to gun control to environmental and health safeguards-and a host of other consumer protections-have faced vigorous opposition centered around the argument that such issues were the province of the states, not the federal government.

Now we see the players rapidly changing game jerseys. Coalitions formed among Republicans and conservative Democrats are attacking states' rights and beating the drums for federal laws to preempt-wipe out-state laws, particularly those that might in any manner involve regulation of financial corporations and other business interests.

Weary of watching the Congress consistently sell out to business interests, consumers have been going to their state legislatures and state attorneys general in an effort to enact and enforce state and local laws that will fill the gap and provide citizens basic protections in the marketplace.

This has angered the Washington lobbyists who see the grass roots movements threatening what they have bought in recent Congresses. Some state governments, once patsies for whatever the dominant economic interests wanted, have been showing some backbone and a willingness to provide consumers with basic safeguards involving such things as privacy, lending scams, arbitrary and excessive fees, access to financial services, health care, control of tobacco, stock fraud and other deceptive practices.

As a result, preemption of state laws is becoming a cottage industry for corporate lobbyists in Washington.

And a writer at the Daily Paul engaged in a libertarian defense of Ralph Nader:

Ralph Nader is not for "huge" government. He advocates ending the War On Drugs, pulling our troops out of Iraq for good and leaving the middle east altogether. What does that mean all you fiscal conservatives out there? Ding, ding, ding! That's right, money saved. As Comander In Chief, Nader could do all of the things listed above. We're talking a savings of billions if not trillions of dollars. People worry and say, "what about all of the socialist style programs that he wants to implement? Well, do you think the majority of those programs will pass the house and senate? Probably not and neither would most of Ron Pauls proposals like getting rid of the income tax. With a Nader Presidency all that would probably happen are the things we want done anyways! Also newly elected C4L chosen Ron Paul Republican congressmen and senators will be there to provide balance! Isn't this starting to sound logical?

About as logical as anything else in this campaign, I guess.

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