By Sam Husseini
Yesterday, a defacto coalition of conservative Republicans and progressive Democrats defeated a Wall Street giveaway backed by Bush, Obama, McCain, the Democratic and Republican congressional “leaderships” — and most of all, the financial interests that back all of them.
Three weeks ago, Ron Paul held an event at the National Press Club where he announced that Ralph Nader (Independent), Cynthia McKinney (Green Party), Chuck Baldwin (Constitution Party) and Bob Barr (Libertarian Party, though he was notably not in attendance) all agreed with a set of principles around foreign policy, privacy, the national debt and the Federal Reserve.
On the core issues of fiscal policy, foreign policy, civil liberties and trade, conscientious conservatives are at odds with the Republican establishment — just as principled progressives are at odds with the establishment of the Democratic party.
The main thing holding together the establishment of the Democratic Party is the phoniness and hypocrisies of the Republican establishment. And the main thing holding together the establishment of the Republican Party is the phoniness and hypocrisies of the Democratic establishment.
Voters meanwhile, who are calling Congress at up to 99-to-1 against a bailout favored by both establishments, are on a course to cancel each other out. They seem set to divide themselves behind each establishment candidate: McCain — marketed as a “maverick” — is in fact a front man for Phil Graham who (as Banking Committee chair) oversaw bank deregulation; and Obama — marketed as a “change agent” — is in effect a front man for Robert Rubin who (as Treasury Secretary) oversaw the same bank deregulation.
The voters — as I propose on VotePact.org — should instead join together. Instead of canceling out each other — one voting for Obama and one for McCain — they should join together in pairs: Brothers and sisters, husbands and wives, coworkers and neighbors and debating partners, union officials and small business owners should pair up and both vote for the third parties of their choice. If they both begin supporting different third parties, that will send a strong message. If they both start backing the same candidate, that could — given the unprecedented series of events — mean the re-alignment of American politics.
The obvious candidate to do this is Ralph Nader. If disinchanted Obama voters and disinchanted McCain voters who know and trust each other began pairing up and backing him, his candidacy could follow that of Jesse Ventura, who defeated both his Republican and Democratic opponents.
Many liberals gawf at the mention of Nader’s name, even as they probably agree with him more on the issues — from a single-payer health care proposal (which even conservatives in Canada herald as a great achievement and is opposed by both McCain and Obama) to opposition to the Patriot Act and FISA immunity (both backed by Obama and McCain). For decades, Ralph Nader’s focus has been corporate accountablity and Main Street being more important that Wall Street — now front and center.
This may well be a once-in-a-lifetime moment to have a defacto peaceful revolution and unseat the Bush-Clinton axis and their monied interests that has ruled over U.S. politics for decades.
What is required is people who are trapped inside each establishment party to get busy talking and finding their political “mirror image” — they need to have a level of dialogue and trust — and support the candidate(s) they most identify with rather than remain trapped and canceling out each other.
– Sam Husseini is the founder of VotePact.org. He contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com.