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nader 08

September 22, 2008

The more I hear and read about our current financial crisis, the more I think Nader is the right choice for this country. For my own part, I know that most people do not take him seriously, but I believe that I understand why he is doing what he is doing, and I admire the man for all that he has done for this country. The list of his accomplishments are staggering, e.g., the Clean Air Act, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the EPA, the Freedom of Information Act, the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act, OSHA, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Wholesome Meat Act, et cetera.

While I have been leaning towards Obama, I am seriously considering voting for Nader for a variety of reasons. One reason is that I am extremely unhappy with the current electorial system, especially how easily constituencies can be marginalized, and I applaud anyone who attempts to change the system, or at the very least, point out the need for reform. It is very difficult to try and get people that are so used to a two-party dominated format to understand why it is important for people like Nader to voice their opinions, and more than that, to take action. People often talk a lot about change, but then do very little about it. Nader, for all of his faults, is at least being actively involved in our political system in order to get others involved instead of just complaining about it.

Of course, this is just my view, and I realize that the majority of people, especially Democrats, will not agree with me and say that a vote for Nader would be a wasted vote; but, to me, a vote for Nader would not be a wasted vote because I take voting seriously in my own way. In my case, I am not a “Democrat” or a “Republican.” I am an independent that happens to really like Obama, as well as Nader, i.e., I like Obama’s composure and message of change, but I like the issues that Nader brings to the table, his stance on those issues and his consumer advocacy experience.

The bottom line is that for me, it is not about voting strategically, it is about voting for the candidate who I feel is the closest in regard to representing my own views and vision for the future (plus, I am unhappy with the two-party dominated system that we currently have, and I support election reforms that would make it easier for third-party and independent candidates to simply get their names on the ballot). Additionally, voting for any candidate whose views and policies you agree with and support is not throwing your vote away. In fact, I think quite the opposite is true. Voting for any candidate whose views and policies you agree with and support is exercising the right to vote responsibly. If anything, I would say that not voting is throwing your vote away, but that is just my opinion.

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