[PEN-L:19869] Re: The Nader campaign, part 1

Louis Proyect lnp3 at SPAMpanix.com
Sun Jun 4 06:31:42 MDT 2000

(Posted to pen-l by Mark Jones)

I don't talk about US domestic matters much because I don't know them much.
But Nader is more than just that. He launched 'consumerism' in other
countries too, so I'm interested. I'm old enough to remember the hoo-hah
about vehicle safety in the 1960s and the susbsequent rise of consumer
groups + issues in Britain. I thought then and I think now that it is all an
utter distraction from what really matters; it is based on the crassest kind
of self-seeking, privatising solipsism which boils great social/historical
issues down to what's in it for me qua passive selfish consumer. What really
mattered then and now for eg is not car safety but less cars and more public
transport. What Nader did is help legitimise the care and ensures its social
apotheosis to its current iconic status. That's disastrously bad. That's the
essence of Nader's social constituency, what's more, and it cannot be the
basis of a national issue-driven mass politics, except by default, ie
because the real thing (a real mass socialism) is missing.  But it's NOT
missing any more. Seattle q.v. Therefore Nader remains a mere distraction
and he and his ilk should indeed be revealed for what they are: a peculiarly
rotten kind of little-Napoleon petit bourgeois politicking.

Lou has hit the nail on the head again.

Mark Jones

Louis Proyect
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