As John Kerry names John Edwards as his running mate, the runoff for president is set–Two campaigns that supported the war in Iraq. But there are candidates for president who oppose the war. We’ll speak with independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader who has just released a new book called "The Good Fight". We speak with him about being kicked off the ballot in Arizona, why he isn’t running as a Green Party candidate and charges that his candidacy will help Bush win reelection. [includes transcript]
- Ralph Nader, one of the country’s leading consumer advocates. In 2000, he was the Green Party candidate for president. He is running again this year, but this time as an independent presidential candidate, though he recently got the nomination of the Reform Party. He has a new book out called The Good Fight: Declare Your Independence and Close the Democracy Gap.
AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org. I’m Amy Goodman. As John Kerry names John Edwards as his running-mate, the runoff for president is set. Four candidates who support the war in Iraq. Today we’re going to speak with independent presidential candidate, Ralph Nader. He has just released a new book called "The Good Fight." We will get his reaction to being kicked off the ballot in Arizona, why he isn’t running as a Green Party candidate, and to charges that he will help President Bush win re-election. But we want to start with your reaction to the choice of John Edwards. Welcome to Democracy Now!, Ralph Nader.
RALPH NADER: Good morning, Amy. I think it was from John Kerry’s point of view, probably the most effective choice. John Edwards has been vetted. There aren’t going to be any skeletons in his closet. He has a good two-Americas speech. There will be a lot of dynamism and he’s a charmer, but the question I have is will he defend the civil justice system, which is the right of the American people when they’re wrongfully injured or defrauded to have their full day in court against corporations, or will he sidestep that issue? Civil justice is under serious attack. It’s already been eroded in state legislatures and there’s a current Class Action bill in the congress that will further weaken the rights of defrauded people from having their day in state court. So that remains to be seen.
AMY GOODMAN: You have written about — or actually have also spoken to John Kerry. What did you say to John Kerry when you spoke to him? Did you urge him to choose John Edwards?
RALPH NADER: I wrote him a letter a few weeks ago, urging him and made it public on our website, voteNader.org, which by the way demonstrates the wide differences in the agenda of the Nader-Peter Camejo ticket compared to the other two parties. The other parties are pro-war, pro-PATRIOT act, pro-death penalty, pro-corporate globalization, and we are on the other side of that. We are the only anti-war candidate. When I talked to John Kerry, I talked basically about the dirty tricks that the democratic parties at the state level are using to try to keep us off the ballot on technicalities, drain our resources. In Arizona, the democrats hired three corporate law firms. They filed suit against us. They had filed suit on such things like one of our signature gatherers— it takes 14,500 signatures to get on the Arizona ballot. One of the signature gatherers collected 550 signatures. He happened to be an ex-felon who paid his debt to society. He had been on juries. He was a registered voter. They found that he did not pay allegedly a $400 fine to the state, and they wanted to knock off 550 signatures. That would have cost us long days in litigation, and we had to drop our effort. We have limited funds under Federal Election Commission regulation. The democrats have unlimited funds outside of any regulation. That’s what they’re doing in Oregon and elsewhere. I told John Kerry to— words to the wise. He may be presiding over a situation, whether he knows it or not, that can be a mini Watergate.
AMY GOODMAN: There’s a piece CNN did a few days ago saying that efforts by two conservative groups to help President Bush by getting independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader on the ballot in the key battleground state of Oregon has prompted a complaint to the Federal Election Commission by the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington known as CREW. Saying that phone banks encouraging Bush supporters to attend a Nader nominating convention amounted to an illegal in-kind contribution to your campaign by the Oregon Family Council and Oregon Citizens for a Sound Economy, two conservative groups. Your response.
RALPH NADER: This group should be called Citizens for Irresponsibility. They filed these complaints based on newspaper clippings. There’s no coordination at all with the republicans. We had no evidence in our convention in a high school auditorium in Portland, Oregon the other day, that they were in any way supporting us. We did have evidence that the democrats had infiltrated the auditorium to swell our number above the required 1,000 supporters, and as a result gave us the impression, and the impression also was conveyed to Oregon state election authorities who were there with their counters, that we could close the doors and start the balloting. Then when the doors were closed and some latecomers were left out, the 100 or so democrats refused to sign the nomination forms. So, they were like trojan horses. The democrats did obstruct. The republicans put out press releases but didn’t engage in any results. But I think that the Committee on so-called Responsibility, that is going to be coming under strong scrutiny, because they’re engaging in reckless harassment.
AMY GOODMAN: Then there’s this piece in the "Boston Globe" that says "billionaire Richard Egan built his reputation in politics as a major donor and fund-raiser for the Bush campaign, steering hundreds of thousands of dollars into Republican coffers in recent years. Now it appears that Egan and his relatives are bankrolling a new candidate, independent presidential contender Ralph Nader." It says he founded EMC Corporation in Hopkinton, has given you the maximum $2,000 allowed under the law. According to federal elections documents, also shows a $4,000 contribution you to from Egan’s son and daughter-in-law, and an independent campaign finance watch group lists the Egan-managed Capital Company, another family business in Massachusetts, as among the biggest contributors to the Nader campaign.
RALPH NADER: We welcome all contributions that are lawful and from American citizens. I don’t know the Egans. I know that John Kerry wanted to appoint Republican Senator John McCain, a pro-war senator, to become his Vice President. I know that John Kerry said he wants Republican votes. You can bet that the fat cats are bankrolling each other’s parties to hedge their bets. The Republican fat cats contribute to the Democrats. The Democratic rich fat cats contribute to Republicans. But there’s no sign that they are any coordinated contributions from the Republicans. We have raised over $1 million, much over our website, voteNader.org, and I would be very surprised if there was very much from Republicans. Number one — that’s number one, and number two, the ones that have come in that I have recognized. Bob monks, my classmate at Harvard Law School. He is a corporate governance expert, and I worked with him and he contributed. And Gino Paluchi, we worked together on the Mesabi Iron Range pollution many years ago in Minnesota, and he contributed. We welcome all contributions from listeners because we’re not taking any commercial money. We don’t take any P.A.C. money. We only take individual contributions either through the mail or through the website voteNader.org.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, do you find the opposition right now to you fiercer than you have ever experienced in your presidential runs?
RALPH NADER: Yes. And it’s expected. You know, I like a robust debate. Peter Camejo, he’s very used to robust debate and action. He marched with Martin Luther King in Selma, Alabama. He has been active ever since. He’s the first Latino vice presidential candidate. It’s about time that 39 million Latinos had someone who could address their concerns, speak fluent Spanish, and represent the defense of all minorities. We are used to that. What is unfortunate and dismaying is the political bigotry that is being demonstrated by some liberals. Sure, oppose us, challenge us, argue with us, but don’t say that you can speak, assemble and petition outside the electoral arena, but don’t go into the electoral arena and be so adamant about it. Of course, the democrats’ dirty tricks are just beginning to unfold. I’m sure that the press will report more of what’s going on there. But we have an obligation to challenge the two-party cabal. The one corporate party with two heads wearing different makeup. The kind of parties that have brought us corporate-occupied territory in Washington. The kind of parties that have let giant business say no to health insurance for everybody, no to living wage, no to a fair tax system, no to waging peace, no to doing something about the bloated wasteful Pentagon budget that now comprises one-half of the federal government’s operating expenditures, at the expense of schools, clinics, public transit systems and all the necessities back home that don’t find any funds to improve facilities for the American people.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, we have to break for stations to identify themselves. We’ll come back. We’ll talk about what happened at the Green Party Convention and also your new book, "the good fight," and then ask about your plans for the convention. Stay with us.
AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. I’m Amy Goodman. Our guest right now is independent presidential candidate, Ralph Nader. He also has written a book called, "The Good Fight — Declare Your Independence and Close the Democracy Gap." what about what happened at the Green Party in Milwaukee. You wanted their endorsement. You announced right before the convention that Peter Comejo would be your running mate, well-known Green Party activist and candidate in California. Very respected in the green party. In the end, they chose David Cobb, another of the presidential candidates. Your response?
RALPH NADER: I wasn’t contesting the nomination. I took myself out of the nomination for the green party in December, but then I was asked again and again by many greens around the country — well, since the greens are split some of them don’t want any presidential candidate this year because they want to beat Bush, would I accept an endorsement, if at their convention they decided not to nominate anybody? I said all right, fine. Instead, they did nominate somebody. So, they made the decision, and fine. I wish them good luck. I don’t talk about this in the book, "the good fight." this book is not really a campaign book as much as it is a book designed to motivate citizens to see how they’re being controlled and how they can fight back to reassert the sovereignty of the people. What’s interesting — I ran across a "Business Week" poll a while back before the most recent corporate crime wave that’s drained trillions of dollars from innocent people, businesses and pension holders, and 72% of the American people said corporations had too much control over their lives. That’s what this book is about. How corporations control our lives and how we can mobilize to do something about it.
AMY GOODMAN: Do you feel like what you have been dealing with for 40 years, the power of corporations is finally gaining currency? I mean now popularly, you have the corporation, the film, this poll, what you’re citing almost three-quarters of the American people across the political spectrum are deeply concerned about corporate control. Can you talk about — you mention it in the book, how you did get started? What first ignited you?
RALPH NADER: Well, I have a lot of personal stories in the book, and one of them was I pitch-hiked a lot as a student all over the country, tens of thousands of miles. I had come across crashes, often you know, with the truck driver, whoever picked me up before the police got there, and it was really horrible scene of carnage. I began to notice the way that the cars crumpled. The steering column would ram back into the space where the driver was, like a spear. People would be spilled out on the highway because the doors would pop open too readily. People would split their skulls on sharp-edged dash panels. I wrote a book called, "Unsafe at any Speed." in 1965, General motors hired private detectives and tried to get dirt on me. Members of congress investigating this caught them. There’s a celebrated congressional committee. General Motors admitted in open congressional session for all of the press that they did this. That provided the momentum for the first historic regulation by the federal government of the auto industry, requiring life-saving standards to be installed like seat belts and later airbags and padded dash panels and collapsing steering columns and better braking systems. That has saved over a million American lives and many more lives abroad because the foreign manufacturers had to meet the same standards to enter the U.S. market. Millions of injuries reduced or prevented. That really taught me just how far these corporate executives would go out of their way, knowing that their engineers knew how to save hundreds of thousands of casualties a year, but they still wanted to sell cars for horsepower and style rather than safety. Now they’re advertising safety on the TV. They’re bragging about the very things they fought us tooth and nail on years ago. I talk about some of these stories. Allegheny Airlines, how we caught them overbooking passengers, went to the supreme court, and now when people go to airports and there’s an overbooking situation, they auction the seats, as everybody knows. They have a P.A. announcement and the flight attendant says we have been overbooked. Anybody who wants to give up a seat, they will get $200 or $300 plus a ticket on the next flight to your destination. So, we tried to give people civic motivation. We have a lot of fun things in the book. Ten ways — ten simple ways to shaft yourself as a consumer. Buy before you think. Buy before you read. Buy before you ask questions. Buy before you can afford to buy. Buy before you comparison shop. Buy when you are tired or hungry. Buy when you are rushed. By when your child demands the product. Buy to keep up with your friends and neighbors. There’s some humor and it makes people indignant and that’s what we want. We want people to say — I’m damn mad and I’m not going to take it anymore. At the end of the book, we have standards for becoming a super voter and not be fooled, flattered and flummoxed. I think the book is going to be a best seller. It’s moving up fast on the Amazon scale. This is the first day it was published. It’s up to 216 on the Amazon scale. So, we think this is going to be a motivating book. It’s a short book. It’s a clear book. It’s got lots of examples. It’s got some interesting disclosures like how did the two parties — how the two parties take campaign contributions in recent years from corporate criminals. They wouldn’t take these contributions from regular individual criminals, but they take them from A.D.M. And Warner Lamber and others who have been convicted or plead guilty to criminal violations. Then they turn around and give $1 million here to $2 million there to the Democrat and Republican party. There seems to be no sanction on that. We should not distinguish between corporate criminals and let them give money to political parties, and say it’s terrible for regular criminals to do so.
AMY GOODMAN: You talk about Microsoft and McDonald’s?
RALPH NADER: Yes. Well, McDonald’s is a fat and sugar pump. It is under pressure, of course. The new film is going to help, the fellow who ate nothing but McDonald’s food for a month and what happened to him physically. But McDonald’s is a company over the years that has marketed directly to children, separating them from their parents with the slogans, "it’s a child’s world," to get the children to nag the parents to go to McDonald’s. They get a lot of fat and sugar. Children’s obesity is sky rocketing along with diabetes. It’s a very unhealthy diet. McDonald’s now is beginning to feel the heat and is starting to offer salads, for example, but by and large, they have done a lot of damage along with other fast food corporations. Microsoft is a monopoly that’s been deemed as such by the courts. When the Justice Department went after it, and it’s a monopoly in the operating system and it proceeds to use that monopoly to attach applications that become monopolies down the line. That has retarded innovation and raised prices unnecessarily to consumers. It doesn’t seem to be anything except for perhaps the European common market prosecutors who can do anything. The case has been completed, and Microsoft is still a monopoly and is generating over $1 billion in pure cash every month. It has the biggest cash hoard in world history, $62 billion. It illustrates the weakness of the antitrust laws.
AMY GOODMAN: Yet it still gets tax credits?
RALPH NADER: Yes, it gets tax credit. Imagine, in effect, the treasury department is writing a check every year to Microsoft. I mean it’s crazy what’s going on. Microsoft and General Electric own MSNBC, and when they started MSNBC, they said there was going to be 300 workers, and will it be in New York city or New Jersey. They dangled it in front of the mayor and the Governor Whitman. Governor Whitman won the deal, among others providing a collage of freebies to the two richest corporations in the world. One of them was — check this — that the workers in MSNBC who have to pay state income taxes, those taxes are then refunded back to Microsoft and General Electric as part of the deal of locating the MSNBC in New Jersey. Corporate welfare is draining hundreds of billions of dollars, local, state and national, away from the treasuries, and making the taxpayer pay for stadiums and ballparks and so on, instead reef pairing schools and clinics it’s not even a political issue in this campaign. The Nader-Comejo candidacy will make it a political issue.
AMY GOODMAN: We’re talking to independent presidential candidate, Ralph Nader, who has written a new book that has just been published this week, "The Good Fight — Declare Your Independence and Close the Democracy Gap." I wanted to ask you about questions, comments of the head of the anti-defamation league, objecting to what you have said about the white house and congress. You were speaking to a gathering of Muslim activists Capitol Hill at a hearing entitled, "the Muslim vote — election in 2004." you said, "I don’t think there’s any prospect of the two parties differing in any significant way on the middle east. The Israeli puppeteer travels so Washington, meets with the puppet in the white house and goes down Pennsylvania avenue and meets with the puppets in congress. The Israeli leader, quote, then, brings back millions of dollars in aid to Israel. It’s time for the united states government to stand up and think for itself. You said, Abraham Foxman, the ADL National said we write to object to your characterization of the white house and congress as puppets of the Israeli government. Reasonable people can and do disagree with u.s. policy related to the middle east, specifically U.S. support for Israel, however there’s a line between thoughtful reason, constructive disagreements and offensive hyperbole," your response.
RALPH NADER: I have said that on more than one occasion. In Washington, it’s the old roman saying, res ipsa loquitur or the thing speaks for itself. Of course it’s offensive. They passed these because APAC wants them to. There’s no independent thinking there. In response to Mr. Foxman, I will quote him tom Friedman on the February 5 column in "the new York times" when he said the following — this is Thomas Friedman, Pulitzer prize winner, author of books on the middle east. Quote, Mr. Sharon has Yasser Arafat under house arrest in are a Ramallah, and he has had George Bush under arrest in the oval office. There is a vice president, dick Cheney, who is ready to do whatever Mr. Sharon dictates and by political handlers telling the president not to put any pressure on Israel on the election year, all conspiring to make sure that the president does nothing. That’s end quote, those are the words of Thomas Friedman. So, maybe Mr. Foxman wants to take it up with Thomas Friedman. The truth here is that — there’s no balanced determination. The U.S. government never connects with the deep and broad Israeli peace movement that represents members and former members of the Knesset, former military people, former intelligence people, former mayors, existing mayors, professors, rabbis. They put 120,000 people in the square in Tel Aviv recently. You would think that the U.S. government was not a puppet. It would support the deep Israeli peace movement, which has been in touch with the Palestinian peace advocates and has worked out more than one accord where there could be a two-state solution living in peace with a viable and independent Palestinian state. So, there should be a debate. The two candidates Kerry, and Bush, are both pro-Israeli military government. They do not connect with the Israeli peace movement or peace now or Jewish voice for peace or Michael Lerner’s Tikkun group. Both Kerry and Bush are pro-war. Our candidacy with Peter Comejo is the only anti-war candidacy. We have a proposal to engage in a responsible six-month withdrawal from Iraq. They will pull out the military and corporate occupation of that country, having internationally supervised elections so there’s no puppet government. And those policies will separate the mainstream Iraqis from supporting or sympathizing with the insurgency, which is spreading. That’s the only way to do it. You do not say that the mainstream Iraqis that they’re going to be faced with an endless, if not permanent military and corporate occupation by the u.s. With the puppet regime, and get peace and stability in that war-torn nation.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, the "Boston Globe" is reporting senator John Kerry has released a new policy paper on Israel, in which he fully supports Israel’s construction of the 425-mile wall through the West Bank. Last year, senator Kerry said that the wall was a barrier to peace. But in the new policy paper, Kerry writes, "The security fence is a legitimate act of self-defense. The tight of the paper is, "strengthening Israel security and bolstering the special u.s.-Israel relationship." in one part of the paper, Kerry concludes that Israel’s cause must be America’s cause. Your response.
RALPH NADER: That’s an example of a puppet. A puppet politician who does not think in the best interests of the American people and the Israeli and Palestinian people. The majority of the people in Israel and the majority of Americans of Jewish faith in this country support an independent Palestinian state, as a solution — peaceful solution to that long-drawn-out conflict. It’s really interesting. John Kerry on the wall is now not even up to the Israeli supreme court, which has issued a decision quite critical of the way that the wall is being built to take existing Palestinian land, separate peasants from their farms or children from their schools. So, he ought to read the latest decision by the Israeli supreme court.
AMY GOODMAN: The Hague will be ruling on this on Friday. I wanted to go for a minute back to the year 2000 to the Republican convention.
AMY GOODMAN: Coming closer to the podium at the Republican national convention. We’ll see if we get in here.
RALPH NADER: I a see a lot of purple. INTERVIEWER: It’s 7% or 8%. Would you be the spoiler if the race is close.
RALPH NADER: You can’t spoil a political system if the political system is spoiled. You need a new political system, and it’s not going to come from the Democratic or Republican party.
AMY GOODMAN: You were just on the floor for the Republican national convention. Cheney is going to be speaking. George Bush is being nominated tonight. What are your comments on George W. Bush of Texas?
RALPH NADER: I think he’s a conglomerate corporation running for president disguised as a person. I don’t think there’s ever been a candidate since McKinley who represents big business so faithfully and tries to manipulate images in order to appear like he’s for the people.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, tonight you have gone on to the convention floor. Dick Cheney is now speaking, the vice presidential nominee and C.E.O. of Halliburton, the largest oil service company in the world, also former secretary of defense. What about that combination of military and corporation?
RALPH NADER: I think he’s going to represent big business. He comes from big business. He just displayed some of the forked-tongue rhetoric of the Republicans by saying, quote, no more shirking our duties to the elderly, end quote. Does that mean he’s going to have tough government and Medicare negotiations to bring down drug prices? Is he going to protect social security or is he going to turn the billions over to wall street firms that are supporters of the Republican party to invest in and destabilize social security? Is he going to protect elderly people with — from all of these consumer scams? So, you see, it’s just rhetoric. You know, they’re telling people what people want to hear, but they’re not giving people what people want them to deliver. That’s a forked-tongue politics based on cash register symbiosis with big business.
AMY GOODMAN: That was Ralph Nader when we went together to the floor of the Republican convention in the year 2000.
RALPH NADER: One of your finest moments, Amy.
AMY GOODMAN: Very interesting the response that you got from the Republicans then. Now it’s four years later. Last night on Jon Stewart’s show when asked, you know, what do you think of Bush and Kerry and you did repeat, you know, well, of course, anything but Bush. But what about that philosophy, and as you describe what the Democrats have done to you in terms of pushing you off the ballot as perhaps a scandal greater than Watergate, where do you stand exactly here?
RALPH NADER: I said it might be a mini Watergate, but where I stand is simple. The two parties are being pulled 24-hours a day by a whole variety of intense corporate interests into the maw of their lobbying power and into the maw of corporate globalization. Who’s pulling on the other side? That’s what our Nader-Comejo candidacy is about. If we give John Kerry a blank check, he will have no mandates. I have not met any group supporting John Kerry that’s demanding anything of John Kerry. When I met him over a month ago, I said, you know, if you win, you’re not going to have any mandate. He said, don’t worry, I will do this and that when I’m president. Yeah, we have heard that before. That’s the key here. Who is pulling in the direction of the interests of the American people? There’s necessities on the Democratic party if you have 'an anybody but Bush' mentality. Anybody but Bush closes the mind immediately. There is no room for any variable, strategies, tactics, any innovation presidential campaigning, and you’re signaling to the Democrats that they can take your vote for granted. When you do that, you are taken. That’s particularly true of labor and minorities without which the Democrats wouldn’t win any elections. They are being taken for granted. They cannot even get a living wage for 47 million full-time workers in this country. One out of every three workers makes less than $10 an hour, 25% of the workers are making in this country — just think of that — are making less than $8.70 an hour, gross before deductions, and before the cost of driving to work.
AMY GOODMAN: Will you remain in the race to the end?
RALPH NADER: Yes. Of course. All of the thousands of people who are volunteering for us who are now as we speak getting signatures to get us on the ballot in various states, those people will never be betrayed by the Nader-Comejo ticket.
AMY GOODMAN: How many states are you on the ballot now?
RALPH NADER: The dead it line is for 46 states. We are just getting underway. The deadline is in July and august. We expect to be well on over 40 states. We will be on Oklahoma or Indiana other than write-ins. The Democrats are challenging us in Texas, where we got over 80,000 signatures. We have a nice constitutional lawsuit that we have filed against the secretary of state in Texas in federal district court. We’re looking for pro bono lawyers. We need them. This is a civil liberties fight, not just for us, but all third parties and all independent candidates who give more voices and choices to the American people, and who are the source, historically in the 19th and 20th century of political regeneration. That includes abolitionist of slavery, women’s right to vote, the right of workers to foreign trade unions, the farmer populist progressive movement. If you marginalize and exclude third parties at the local, state and national level, you are ossifying an increasingly converging two-party system.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, last election, Michael Moore supported you. He is definitely throwing his support now calling for support for the Democrats and throwing out George Bush. Your response?
RALPH NADER: I don’t know what’s happening to Michael. I mean, he has made a very successful film. All of good luck to him, but you know year he’s for this candidate, another year he’s for that. He endorsed Wesley Clark in New Hampshire. Then he said something about he wanted to take our votes away. He mentioned that to Kerry. Then he said, falsely, that I promised in 2000 not to campaign in the close states. That’s not true. He campaigned with me in the close states. Right up to two days before the election. He was supporting us in the giant M.C.I. Center rally in Washington, D.C. So, I don’t know where he is politically. I thought more highly of him when he was. A challenger, a resistor, when he defied the political system, and he’s got to sort out his own political positions more clearly.
AMY GOODMAN: The Green party also chose a candidate who basically is taking that safe strategy, saying that they want to build the green party from the grassroots up, but in the swing states, taking a different strategy.
RALPH NADER: Yeah, well, then you shouldn’t have a third party. The only leverage third parties historically in our country have had on the two parties is when they can deny them votes in close states. Why should Kerry or Bush listen to the Green party if the Green party is just going to campaign in safe Republican or safe Democratic states? The argument I make in the book, "The Good Fight," is basically that people have got to understand what corporate control is all about. It’s not just something that people feel generally. They have to understand how they’re being controlled as taxpayers as corporations become tax-free institutions. They have to understand what corporations are doing their children and exploiting childhood. It’s how they’re doing it that motivates people, and not just that they are doing it. The environment. We have chapters in all of these areas, and we’re trying to generate the kind of élan, civic élan where people can understand the suppressed necessities in our society, and the concentration of greed and power, but be motivated to do something about it, rather than being demoralized. I think it’s going to be a best seller. That’s the purpose of the "The Good Fight," book.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, I want to thank you for being with us. This is Democracy Now!.