Ralph Nader Radio Hour

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RALPH NADER RADIO HOUR EPISODE 103: Harvey Wasserman, Comedy, Listener Questions
March 5, 2016

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Ralph challenges old friend, Harvey Wasserman, on his claim that electronic voter fraud turned the presidential elections of 2000 and 2004 and could also do so in 2016. Also, Ralph and Steve debate the value of comedy. Plus: Listener questions!

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Harvey Wasserman

Harvey Wasserman is a journalist, author, democracy activist, and advocate for renewable energy. He has been a strategist and organizer in the anti-nuclear movement for over 30 years. Much of his recent work has focused on the issue of electronic voter fraud. His book, due out later this year with co-author Bob Fritakis, is entitled, The Strip & Flip Selection of 2016: Five Jim Crows & Electronic Election Theft.

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RALPH NADER RADIO HOUR EPISODE 103

Steve Skrovan: Welcome to the Ralph Nader Radio Hour. My name is Steve Skrovan with my co-host David Feldman, who rumor has it, is vying to be Donald Trump’s running mate. Hello, David.

David Feldman: I read a book recently so that disqualifies me.

Steve Skrovan: You read a book. See, there you go. Reading books.

Harvey Wasserman: Well, was it a comic book? That’s the question.

Steve Skrovan: That voice is Harvey Wasserman who’s our first guest. We’re going to get to Harvey in a second here. Before, we want to check in with the man of the hour, Ralph Nader who had a birthday last weekend. Happy Birthday, Ralph.

Ralph Nader: Thank you.

Steve Skrovan: We are going to devote the entire second half of the show today to listener questions. We’ve been getting a lot of them from both Facebook and the Ralph Nader Radio Hour website. And we’re going to try to work our way through as many as we can. We’ll also hear, as always, from Corporate Crime Reporter, Russell Mohkiber, the Adrian Monk of the White-Collar Crime Beat. In the first half of the show though, we’re going to be talking about the possibility of electronic voter fraud, which leads us to our first guest. David?

David Feldman: Well, this week, Donald Trump swept through the South like General Sherman -setting fire to the Republican Party. The divided Republican Party – that got a laugh, Steve, so I’ll take credit for it.

Steve Skrovan: Okay.

David Feldman: That was Steve’s but I said it, so it’s funny. A divided Republican party in the general election will be a desperate one. So how the votes are counted becomes even more important. Our guest today is Harvey Wasserman, journalist, author, democracy activist and advocate for renewable energy. Harvey’s been a strategist, an organizer in the antinuclear movement for over 30 years. Much of his recent work is focused on the issue of electronic voter fraud. His book due out later this year with co-author Bob Fitrakis is entitled The Strip & Flip Selection of 2016: Five Jim Crows & Electronic Election Theft. Welcome back to the show, Harvey Wasserman.

Harvey Wasserman: Well, it’s great to be with you, especially on the day after Sherman marched through Georgia. So we’re happy for that.

Ralph Nader: Harvey, it’s good to have on again. I want to go through a whole sequence here as if I’m cross-examining you so that the listeners get the idea of what’s going on, how evidentiary based it is, and what they can do about it - and especially if you live in the swing states like Ohio and Florida but also in states around the country that have these electronic voting machines. So once you state the case that you’re making, number one - when you make it - tell us why you think the elections of 2000 and 2004 at the presidential level were stolen because of these machinations involving what you call “stripping and flipping” and then define “stripping and flipping.” And then we’ll take it from there.

Harvey Wasserman: Okay. So Ralphy, I’m glad you mentioned evidentiary. The number one question there one has to ask. You know, people roll their eyes because it’s another conspiracy theory - aside from the fact that there have been plenty of conspiracies in American history that turned out to be true. The question I have to ask is: How is the electronic vote count in the United States in the 2016 election going to be verified? Where is the verification of the electronic vote count especially in states like Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Michigan, Iowa and Arizona where you have a Republican governor and a Republican Secretary of State? If you do not have a hand counted paper ballot that will tell you off the top that there is no way to verify the electronic vote count. We’re talking about a public election, an election for - not only President United States but the Congress, governorships state legislatures, all the way down to dogcatchers that’s being conducted on electronic voting machines. Most of which are 10 years old or older. I don’t know how many of your listeners are working on a 10-year-old personal computer, but these machines were bought a good decade ago. How do you verify the vote count on those machines? The fact of the matter is, you don’t. There is absolutely no public control, no back up. These machines are privately owned, mostly by corporations that have clear Republican Party ties and where the courts have ruled that the source code is proprietary. So if you start from a situation where we’re all voting on black box, we go in there, we push the – or whatever we push on the screen, it lights up or it doesn’t light up in many cases, you push at the end of the process, you push the button that says you’ve voted and you walk away with nothing. Now in some cases, they’ll give you – and they can’t give you a receipt actually because the receipt would allow you to sell your votes and confirm that you sold your votes. You walk away basically voting with nothing, there is no legitimate recount as we tried to do it in Ohio two times before. And it’s a scam.

Ralph Nader: Let me interject here. Who owns the voting machines? I thought the tax payer bought those machines, apart from the propriety software. Who owns the machine?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, there are cases where the federal government bought them. There may be leases out there we have not really would search it because there’s no reason to because these courts have said that no matter who votes and owns the machines, you can’t have access to the source code even though…

Ralph Nader: Let me – let me examine that. That can be overridden by a contract between the State and the software company. So here’s the question. The software company wants to have proprietary ownership obviously. And I want you to name the companies in a minute. But, if you represent a municipality or a State, and you're paying this software company, you can have a contract which in effect overrides the proprietary secret and allows the public interest to weigh in here. Why weren’t these contracts written that way? And who got paid off, if that was the case?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, you tell me, Ralph. I mean they don’t do it. They don’t do it. These…

Ralph Nader: No one has done it? No State? No municipality? Nobody?

Harvey Wasserman: Not that we know of. I suppose there may be an exception out there, but they didn’t bother to do it. Most of these machines were bought with federal money.

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: And they help them to vote at. I mean, you recall Ralph in 2000, there was this whole lunacy with the hanging chads and the response of the federal government led by a congressman from Ohio - who went to prison named Bob Ney - was to put aside a couple of billion dollars and pass these machines out to localities. And then that part of it was not done. They have a vested interest.

Ralph Nader: Yeah. Now Harvey, you claimed that the 2000 election and the 2004 election were stolen in this way because you had Republican governors, Republican Secretaries of State and they dealt with these companies providing the software and that they stole the election. If they stole the election this way against the Democratic Party, against Al Gore, against John Kerry, well why is the Democratic Party not making this emblazed issue especially when they controlled Congress in 2009-2010. You don’t hear anything from the Democratic Party. Do they want to continue to lose the elections to the Republicans?

Harvey Wasserman: No. But you would have to guess that they would continue to want to have the same power as the Republicans when the time came. You know, we’re Greens, Bob Fitrakis, my co-author and I are Greens. Our interest in this – our partisan interest - is that should the Greens or another left third party ever get strong enough, we don’t want to have the elections stolen from us by the Republicans and the Democrats. The reality is, Ralph, that in 2000, when you had the temerity to run for President of the United States and everybody screamed at you, in fact, it was rigged by a stripping maneuver, when Jeb Bush, the governor of Florida used the computer program to strip more than 90,000 African-American and Latino voters from the voter rolls so that they couldn’t vote.

Ralph Nader: How could he do that? Let’s define stripping for our listeners. How could he do that?
Harvey Wasserman: Stripping is removing people – stripping people from the voter rolls. Very simple process.

Ralph Nader: On what basis?

Harvey Wasserman: In 2000, they used the idea that 90,000 ex-felon and now in Florida they had a law getting back to the Jim Crow Post-Reconstruction South, that if you’ve ever been convicted of a felon, you’ll lose your vote permanently, unless you have a private meeting with the Governor and he reinstates it. That was the law. So Jeb Bush went. He got his computer program, took the names of ex-felons from a number of different States, not just Florida, and if Jim Jones had been convicted of a felony in Alabama, and there was a Jim Jones on the voter roll in Florida, Jim Jones in Florida lost his vote.

Ralph Nader: That’s been well-documented, Harvey. That’s quite true what they did and it was Kathleen Harris, the Secretary of State for Jeb Bush in Tallahassee, who was involved in that. Okay. That’s a clear voter fraud question. Why wasn’t that prosecuted?

Harvey Wasserman: Because, you know, George W. Bush came into office, Al Gore totally folded, never said a word after the Supreme Court decision, still hasn’t said a word after the Supreme
Court decision. Now, there was a well-documented flipping electronically in Florida in Volusia County. About 20,000 votes were flipped from Kerry to Gore.

Ralph Nader: Define specifically flipping. Very carefully now…

Harvey Wasserman: Okay.

Ralph Nader: …because your new book – we’re talking to Harvey Wasserman. His new book with his co-author is called The Strip & Flip Selection of 2016: Five Jim Crows & Electronic Election Theft. So you’ve described stripping and that does go on as voter suppression and it’s been written about. Now, specifically define flipping.

Harvey Wasserman: Flipping is merely taking a vote for one candidate and electronically flipping it to another candidate. This was done in Volusia County in Florida in 2000. And it was massively done in Ohio in 2004 between 12:20 and 2:00 AM after the votes were counted on election night. J. Kenneth Blackwell, the Secretary of State of Ohio - and you have two consecutive presidential elections decided in States where the Secretary of State, who ran the election, was a co-chair of the committees for Bush and Cheney, small conflict of interest, was never pressed, never said a word. So at 12:20 at night, there was screenshot taken where the outcome of the election on CNN showed John Kerry winning Ohio by 4.2% - over 200,000 votes. Suddenly, the electronic vote count went dark and then no more votes came in until 2 o’clock in the morning, when suddenly George W. Bush was leading by 2.5%. So the electronic vote count was flipped from a 4.2% margin for John Kerry to a 2.5% margin for George W. Bush.

Ralph Nader: Okay. And – okay.

Harvey Wasserman: And it’s just…

Ralph Nader: Harvey, let me interject here. You used the passive voice, was flipped. Who flipped it? Was it premeditated? And why didn’t the Democrats even after Kerry and Edwards abandoned any kind of recount - they threw in the towel as you know the day after the so-called election - why wasn’t any prosecution? All it took, you know, was any local prosecutor. There’s got to be some prosecutors who aren’t bought and sold in Ohio, because what you just described could not happen accidentally, correct?

Harvey Wasserman: Absolutely correct.

Ralph Nader: Okay. It’s a premeditated crime under Ohio law, correct?

Harvey Wasserman: Should be. Absolutely.

Ralph Nader: Okay. Now, you and I and others got John Conyers, who is a veteran member of the House of Representatives from Michigan to have an informal House congressional hearing on this. Could you describe that, because they excluded me from testifying, but you were involved in it? What happened? Who testified? And what was the result?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, Bob Fitrakis and I testified and others and nothing happened. You know, they ran up a nice big record. And I got to tell you Ralph that we sued in federal court and won and nothing happened. What happened was – they actually denied me. I voted in Columbus at the same precinct since the 1980s - they denied me an absentee ballot. I was a – plaintiff in – a co-plaintiff - in the Federal lawsuit. My co-author, Bob Fitrakis, was one of the attorneys. We won in Federal court a decision mandating that all the 88 counties in Ohio bring their records to Columbus. By this time, we have a new Secretary of State, Jennifer Brunner, a Democrat. She set up a repository in Columbus. The 88 counties were ordered by Federal law to bring in all their records from the 2004 election. And when it came time for them to bring them in, 56 of the 88 counties had nothing to bring. They said that their records had been destroyed. We had one county Board of Elections say that all the ballots have been destroyed. They used hand drawn ballots. All the ballots have been destroyed because a coffee urn had spilled on them. One county said that they had accidentally put everything out with the recycling. So there was no recount. Federally mandated via Algenon Marbley, a Federal judge, our lawsuit, and there was never a recount.

Ralph Nader: Name the lawsuit and the Federal judge.

Harvey Wasserman: King-Lincoln Bronzesville lawsuit. It was Algenon Marbley was the judge. Now, Ralph, in that 12:20 to 2:00 AM period where the vote count was flipped, J. Kenneth Blackwell was in charge of the electronic vote count. He had given them the contract, a no bid contract to a company called GoTech, which was aligned with Smart Tech. The head of the company was a guy named Mike O’Connell. He is the guy who did the flipping. We deposed him in a Federal court the day before the 2008 election. And we got very, very close to getting him to tell us what happened. We think he was going to crack. And then in December of 2008, he died in a mysterious single passenger air crash in Canton in December 2008. So we – Mike O’Connell would only be deposed now from the grave. We find that very suspicious.

Ralph Nader: Let’s go back to the court decision for our listeners. How can I get the details on the court decision? Do you have a website you want to give them?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, we – it’s at freepress.org, www. freepress.org. Bob and I have written seven – well this would be our seventh book about electronic election theft.

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: It’s not voter fraud.

Ralph Nader: Okay. Let's get back to this point. Why isn’t there one prosecutor - there are a lot prosecutors, you know, in Florida, in Ohio - why didn’t one prosecutor with all this evidence you have, why didn’t they take it and move against this criminal behavior?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, you know, if you can psychoanalyze the Democratic Party and tell us why they haven’t done this, I’d be glad to know. John Kerry had a $7 million fund designed specifically to deal with election theft. He went windsurfing at 1 o’clock the day after the election. We told him - we were in touch with his people in Columbus - there were 250,000 votes and Ohio…

Ralph Nader: Yeah. But you dodged the question. I’m not talking about the Democratic Party. I’ll get to that. I’m saying one prosecutor with the evidence that you put out and in federal court and all. Why didn’t one prosecutor, either Ohio or Florida, prosecute?

Harvey Wasserman: You know, I have no idea, Ralph. I could never answer - maybe because Jim Garrison doesn’t live in Ohio. But nobody has come forward to do it.

Ralph Nader: All right. Let’s get to the Democratic Party. You can say that John Edwards and John Kerry - and I agree - they threw in the towel. But there are other Democrats, who have to be considered worried about this. They’ve lost elections, they’ve lost two presidencies in Florida. You're right, they did steal the election, and Gore didn’t want to pursue it. The Democratic Party blamed the Green Party. There were 537 votes before the recount that was stopped by 5/4 decision in the Supreme Court led by Scalia, stopped the Florida Supreme Court order, which was underway to have a full state recount. So, just that ex-felon maneuver was 90,000 votes. So, it’s a lot more than 537 votes - not to mention other things like a quarter of a million Democrats in Florida voting for George W. Bush in 2000. But why wasn’t there some Democrats, some local officials, some local prosecutors, why didn’t they do anything in Florida either?

Harvey Wasserman: Ralph, I wish I knew.

Ralph Nader: All right. You don’t know the answer to that. Okay. Now, how about some of these great investigative reporters, Center for Public Integrity, ProPublica, Seymour Hersh, Jeff Gerth, you know, people you know. None of them ever moved on what you presented to them. So what was their problem?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, Greg Palast did it and Bev Harris did it. They covered it pretty well. I mean, we got it out there…

Ralph Nader: Yeah. But we’re talking about the heavyweight press, Washington Post, New York Times, Boston Globe, AP. I mean, they’ve had some pretty fearless investigations of bad things. The New York Times just had two long articles in Sunday and Monday, devastating article on Hillary’s critical role in the unconstitutional illegal war in Libya, that blew apart the country spreading into Central Africa and weapons everywhere in the Middle East from Gaddafi’s weapon cache. So – and, you know, and the New York Times endorsed Hillary - so there are gutsy reporters. This is a Pulitzer Prize winning opportunity, Harvey Wasserman. How come nobody stepped forward with the major press? Was it that you didn’t contact them?

Harvey Wasserman: You know, that’s right. And what we – we were interviewed by the New York Times. They had my picture in the New York Times sorting through ballots in Troy County in Troy Ohio and they just never followed through on it. I think there’s a scene in A Few Good Men where Jack Nicholson says, “You can’t handle the truth.” I don’t think these guys can handle the truth. This is a total delegitimatization of the entire American sham of the…

Ralph Nader: Okay. All right. Let me ask you another question here. Quickly, name the private corporations who have this proprietary software. Tell our listeners who they are.

Harvey Wasserman: Okay. Originally, it was Dieboldt, which has been taken over by Dominion now DSNS. DSNS is the big one. The other one is called Triad, but DSNS is the number one corporation. They were originally with Chuck Hagel, who stole a Senate seat in Nebraska twice in a row and nobody said any word about that except us. I mean, we can’t even get funding, Ralph.

Ralph Nader: There’s enough you put in the public record that some local prosecutor, some Democratic official, party, some investigative reporter should have picked it up and run with it. And it keeps going on, you were saying. It’s not just ancient history. You're saying this is going to happen this year.

Harvey Wasserman: Ralph, the stripping this year is worse than ever. You know, there’s voter ID…

Ralph Nader: Yeah.

Harvey Wasserman: They are stripping millions…

Ralph Nader: Yeah.

Harvey Wasserman: …of people from voter roll…

Ralph Nader: But this…

Harvey Wasserman: [00:19:31 inaudible]

Ralph Nader: But the flipping…

Harvey Wasserman: This Democrats think they’re going to waltz into victory. There’s nobody out there to vote. Why don’t you think the voter turnout in 2014 was so low?

Ralph Nader: Right.

Harvey Wasserman: [00:19:41 inaudible]

Ralph Nader: Voter suppression. No one’s arguing the absence of voter suppression except for why the Democrats don’t make any bigger deal out of this in Republican States but it’s the flipping that’s premeditated crime after the vote precinct closes. That’s the premeditated crime that you claim you've documented and that is why I keep asking: this is an easy investigative opportunity for a journalism prize. It’s an easy prosecution. It doesn’t happen. Before I go further, what is your remedy? Do you think we should be like Canada? Canada, you have old-fashioned paper ballot, big country, by 11:00 PM, everybody knows in Canada the Northwest Territories, Quebec, you name it, Maritime Provinces who won and who lost. Why aren’t we like Canada? And are there kickbacks in the procurement area that have been prosecuted? Now, it’s often the easy crime with these voting machines being sold to high prices to government agencies. Can you cover that quickly?
Harvey Wasserman: Yeah. One is that the congressman - who was instrumental in pushing the Help America Vote Act, Bob Ney - he did go to prison for kickbacks and spreading these machines. Canada, Germany, Ireland, now. Ireland had an electronic voting. They got rid of it. Romania, Japan, all have hand counted paper ballots. In Germany, the hand counted paper ballots agree with the exit polls to within a quarter of 1% and that’s what we have now.

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: …Hand counted paper ballots. You have universal automatic voter registration where everybody when you turn 18, when you get your driver’s license, your…

Ralph Nader: And – yeah. okay. So all these countries doing it the right way, especially Canada. Now, let me ask you this. Do you have any doubt that in Ohio in Florida in 2016 - they’re going to be closely contested between the Republican and Democratic presidential candidates; they’re controlled by the Republican Party; the governors are Republican; Secretary of States are Republican; everything's in place for another rerun - do you have any doubt that they’re going to steal the election if the Democrats are say, a half one or one percent ahead?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, they can definitely do it. There’s no doubt that they have the opportunity to do it. And what these guys do is, because they’re all anti-choice, you know, they justify doing it because they’re saving babies. That was Mike O’Connell’s line, the guy who ran the company of that flipped vote in Ohio in 2004. He would justify doing anything including flipping elections because he was saving babies from abortion. That’s the justification; and it can be done. There are some States where you have Democratic governors and Democratic Secretaries of State as well, but those aren’t the key swing states.

Ralph Nader: Is there such thing as electronic voting machine with paper verification and who has it?

Harvey Wasserman: They’re working on – well, they’re on one in California. It’s a fairly complicated set up. I suppose it could be done but it makes no sense to do it. It’s expensive. It’s complicated. Why not just cast hand counted paper ballots? And they have a justification in California, because there’s so many different languages spoken there, and they’re working on something there. But the bottom line is, there’s no reason not to have hand counter paper ballots. You do have some complications with people who are blind or have other disabilities. Those can be taken care of. That’s always what they hide behind is that, you know, you need electronic machines because of the disabled thing. Now, these things can be worked around. The bottom line is well, we want to have, Ralph, is a four-day National holiday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday where everybody is off work so that working people could vote. It’s a real hardship on a Tuesday, you know, people have to just leave work. That’s not right. You have a four-day national holiday, the polls are run. This is what we call the Ohio plan. The polls are run by college and high school students who get paid $15 an hour and senior citizens. They count the ballots at the end of the day and you have universal automatic voter registration. When you turn 18, you’re automatically registered to vote. That’s it. Why should we have to run drives to get people registered to vote? It should be automatic.

Ralph Nader: Harvey, let me ask you this question. There have been others, Johns Hopkins for example who have raised the flare of electronic voting machine frauds. I suspect there are at least three or four real specialists in this area that seemed to warn the public the way you are. Do they agree with you and have you ever brought them on an open letter or some sort of collaborative petition to the powers that be and release it to the press in order to put your flare at a higher level of visibility? How about the Johns Hopkins experts?

Harvey Wasserman: The Brennan Center in New York has confirmed that the voting machines are hackable. We’ve had a number of public hacks where computer experts have just gone, you know, flat out in front of the cameras, taken an electronic voting machine and, you know, made mincemeat out of them. And you got to remember, Ralph, that the machines now are 10 years old. All these machines were bought under the HAVA Act in 2003, 4, 5. The better the year – they’re both…

Ralph Nader: Yeah. But saying...

Harvey Wasserman: Yeah.

Ralph Nader: Like the Johns Hopkins specialists saying they’re hackable is different than saying they’ve been hacked at midnight after the voting precincts closed. Do any of these experts go all the way with you on your description of these crimes?

Harvey Wasserman: Yes. We have Ron Veyman and Steve Freeman and a number of other high level computer experts basically come out - this is the phrase they use, Ralph - it’s a “virtual statistical impossibility.” All the statistical experts who’ve looked at the – mathematicians and so on - who’ve looked at the flipping that went on in 2004 used the term “virtual statistical impossibility.” And so yes, and we had – for example, we isolated the 11 key swing states in 2004. And in all 11 States, except Wisconsin, which had a Democratic Secretary of State, in all 11 – in 10 of the 11 key swing States in 2004 where the election was decided, there was a red shift, a shift from Kerry to Bush. And two of those States, Colorado and Florida, they stayed in the Bush column. In four of the States, they stayed in the Kerry column, they didn’t shift enough. But in four of the States, they shifted from Kerry to Bush including Ohio. And those were the State that decided the election. And then…

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: …every State petitioned who’s looked at…

Ralph Nader: Yeah. Let me ask you. Let me give you a chance. You have a multi-point reform program. Do you want to run that by very quick? Then I want to take this to our two jurors, David Feldman and Steve Skrovan, who must saying to themselves, “What’s going on here?” And would you be willing to answer the questions that come from our listeners who are as puzzled as I am why the Democratic Party doesn’t do anything, why nobody in the Democratic Party in an official capacity doesn’t do anything to State or local level, why there are no prosecutors, why there are no leading investigative reporters. This is the political story of the decade, easily in the USA and our listeners saying, “Is something wrong. We don’t understand. We want to ask Harvey Wasserman the question.” So run through your really interesting reforms and then I’m going to throw it to Steve and David to see what they’ve been simmering to say.

Harvey Wasserman: Okay. Well, if you want to ask the question it has – I will give you the program in a second. The one – the two people who are most responsible for not dealing with this are Al Gore and John Kerry. And you can ask, why these two guys have not followed up this. One gets a Nobel Prize, one becomes a Secretary of State and neither one of them have said a word about the elections that they actually won. And then, you know, our program of reform is very simple. Universal automatic voter registration, 4-day weekend for voting, universal hand counted paper ballots. And basically, that’s it. And the polls run by college students, high school students, 15 bucks an hour, senior citizens as well. And as you say, Ralph, it’s a big country but we can have a hand counted paper ballot decision by midnight. certainly on election day.

Ralph Nader: And any – has anybody put a bill in the State legislature or Congress reflecting what you just said?

Harvey Wasserman: No. Nobody wants to deal with this. Bernie Sanders has…

Ralph Nader: Not even – not even john Conyers, your friend?

Harvey Wasserman: No. No. Bernie Sanders has endorsed universal hand counted paper ballots. And he’s the only one that came forward.

Ralph Nader: Has he endorsed automatic registration?

Harvey Wasserman: I think he has actually. Tom Hartmann told me that he has done those two things.

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: So I believe he has. But beyond that, no one is talking about it.

Ralph Nader: [MISSING]

Harvey Wasserman: Okay. And what kind of presence that you had on radio, TV? Have you been on NPR? Have you been Diane Rehm Show, Terry Gross? Have you been any of these NPR and PBS shows?

Harvey Wasserman: Ralph, we cannot get on NPR, the NPR station in Columbus, Ohio on this. They will not have us on.

Ralph Nader: Charlie Rose? Charlie Rose?

Harvey Wasserman: No. Nobody.

Ralph Nader: How about state NPR? Wisconsin’s got a good one. Have you ever tried that?

Harvey Wasserman: We’ll try them all. The book will ready in less than a month. We’re going to let you know if you want to help us…

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: …with publicity. We’d appreciate it but…

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: …we can’t even get a grant, Ralph. We can’t get any money at all to help us.

Ralph Nader: Okay. Before I – before I throw it to Stephen and David, give your website once again, indicate you’re willing to answer these questions from our very serious listeners. We have serious listeners. These are not people who suffer from justice fatigue and short attention span, Harvey. So are you willing?

Harvey Wasserman: Oh, of course. Absolutely. We would welcome @freepress – you can write at truth@freepress.org. You can go free press through our website and you can write me directly. I’ll give you my email which is solartopia, S-O-L-A-R-T-O-P-I-A, @gmail. I’d welcome any inquiries. And, you know, it’s beyond me why no one wants to cover this. It’s just too big if you – if you reveal and then if you lift the curtain on Wizard of Oz, everything falls apart. We are living in a total fraud. Even you, Ralph, you know, they continue to hammer you for daring to run in 2000. And no one will deal with the fact that the election was stolen. And, you know…

Ralph Nader: Yeah, I agree with that. What I don’t understand is why, with all the prosecutors, all the investigative reporters, all the media that likes sensational stuff and, you don’t deal in rhetoric, you’re very specific, nothing happens. So let me throw it to Steve and David. What are you thinking listening to this? This is a political crime of the decade, if what Harvey is saying is true.

David Feldman: Steve, can I go first?

Steve Skrovan: Go first, David.

David Feldman: I think when Reagan got elected, he said America should be run like a corporation and we’re being run by a corporation. The shareholders do not have a vote. So I’m not trying to be glib here but maybe we have to reform corporate America first before we get to vote. If you own stock in IBM, you don’t get any say in anything.

Ralph Nader: Steve?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, if you own a stock in America, apparently they’ll either…

David Feldman: Yeah.

Harvey Wasserman: And, you know, this is who is by the way three seven seats in 2014 were pretty sure were stolen and then just Kay Hagan in North Carolina. And she just walked into the – into the mist and didn’t say a word. We know she won.

Steve Skrovan: Harvey, as I listened to this, you make a lot of great points. But, you know, if I’m a juror and this is a trial, I’m hearing a lot of circumstantial evidence and I’m not seeing a smoking gun. What do you think the concrete, smoking gun evidence, the best evidence you have is to convince people. who are obviously not willing to – or are reluctant to even look at it – that this and that there’s a real, real problem here.

Ralph Nader: Especially on the midnight flipping, Harvey.

Harvey Wasserman: You’ve got 11 States and we have a screenshot of the CNN at 12:20 at night at 11 States, key swing states. Wisconsin is only one that didn’t shift. 10 of the 11 swing states electronically shifted from Kerry to Bush, including four that switched definitively from Kerry to Bush with electoral votes. But in all of 10 of the 11 States, you had red shift, 100% in the direction from Kerry to Bush. It’s a virtually statistical impossibility. I’ll can line up a thousand statisticians and maybe one or two of them will say, “It was random,” but there’s no way this happened as a virtual statistically impossibility without some kind of divine hand intervening here. But yeah, we do have a problem. These are black boxes, these are electronic voting machines. That’s why you want to have hand counted paper ballots. As long as you don’t have hand counted paper ballots, they’re going to be able to get away with this.

Ralph Nader: Yeah. But Harvey, listen. As what Steve was saying, you got midnight flipping. That means there are human beings that are basically changing the election results that close at 8:00 PM or whatever by finagling these electronic machines. Obviously, it takes more than one human being and if you’ve got a dozen who are involved in this cabal and it’s done in one State after another and election after another, there’s no whistleblowers? There’s nobody who leaks?

Harvey Wasserman: It’s doesn’t – it doesn’t take a dozen. It takes three. It takes the governor, the Secretary of State and the IT guy. That’s all that they…

Ralph Nader: And give me – and give me their narrative with each other after the precinct closes at 8:00. What would they say to each other in order to flip it?

Harvey Wasserman: They would say, “Gore and Kerry are pro-choice and will allow abortions to happen, therefore babies will die. Bush is anti-choice. He’s going to stop abortion. Therefore by flipping the election, we are saving babies’ lives.”

Ralph Nader: Okay. And I’m talking about the mechanics, not the rationale. The…

Harvey Wasserman: Although…

Ralph Nader: The governor says to the Secretary of State - he gives your arguments - and then he says, “Do what you have to do.” So you mean the Secretary of State then individually without any assistance flips votes in various precincts in Ohio?

Harvey Wasserman: No. What they do is they tabulate the – they tabulate the votes. They have to compile the votes. And so what happens then is that the IT guy, the person that has the contract -who's electronically counting the vote - hits a couple of key strokes. It takes about 60 seconds.

Ralph Nader: In other words, it goes from the Secretary of State to the proprietary software company that does the dirty job?

Harvey Wasserman: No, they would have hired an electronic compiler, a company that will…

Ralph Nader: Right.

Harvey Wasserman: …compile all the electronic results. So that’s what happened in Ohio…

Ralph Nader: Okay. And they’re the ones who get the directive – they’re the ones who get the order?

Harvey Wasserman: Yes, that’s how we think it happened in 2004. You have to remember in 2004, the electronic vote count for the State of Ohio was done on servers that were in the basement of a building in Chattanooga Tennessee on the same server farm that handled the email from the Republican National Committee and for Karl Rove. And the guy who did the electronic filing in 2004, Mike O’Connell, worked for the Bush family as well as having the contract with State of Ohio – a slight conflict of interest.

Ralph Nader: By the way, just tell our listeners, remind them how – what was the official vote disparity that got George W. Bush beating Kerry in Ohio in 2004, your home state?

Harvey Wasserman: Well, at 12:20 at night, John Kerry was ahead by 4.2% and we’re over 200,000 votes in Ohio. The election had been called for John Kerry in Ohio in 2004. That was at 12:20 at night. We have the screenshot from CNN. At 2 o’clock in the morning, the vote count, it went dark. The all vote count procedure went dark at 12:20. And at 2:00, they emerged with George W. Bush winning by 200 – 2. 5%. And initially, it’s 130,000 and it came down to 118,775 votes. That was the…

Ralph Nader: Right.

Harvey Wasserman: …official final margin for George W. Bush, even though 250,000 votes are still to this day uncounted from the Ohio 2004 election.

Ralph Nader: There were really shenanigans in Ohio and, you know, like in Oberlin somehow the lines were very long and people couldn’t wait three, four hours because that was a heavily Democratic precinct. Yeah, we’ve heard that. Harvey, we’re running out of time but we – this is going to be continued. This has got to be pursued. Two points. One is: the Democrats engage in shenanigans. This Iowa caucus where Hillary apparently squeaked through ahead of Bernie - Bill Curry who writes this political column for Salon, says that Bernie won the popular vote there. And the Iowa Democratic Party doesn’t want to release certain details because they favor Hillary. And of course, we know what is going on historically in Chicago, in the old days, and phony voting and under the political machines here and around the country. So, you know, there are books written on the history of stolen elections in American past. So we’re not trying to say, you know, this can’t happen. But let me ask you one question. Finally, and we’re going to continue this in coming programs and I hope the listeners will really, not only ask questions but say, “I know a prosecutor who’d bring something like this case.” Have you ever been publically cross-examined by a tough inquisitor who knows about voting machines, proprietary and the history of voting in America? And would you be willing to expose yourself to that public cross-examination?

Harvey Wasserman: Of course, I love it.

Ralph Nader: Okay.

Harvey Wasserman: And don’t think it’s – that what used to go in Chicago - let’s look at how Rahm Emanuel allegedly got elected in Chicago. This is one of the reasons the Democrats don’t want to touch this, because they want to defend themselves against exactly what happened in Chicago which is a renegade leftist that they couldn’t control. And so, you know, it’s not…

Ralph Nader: So they both want to take advantage of these voting machine shenanigans. But my skepticism is: there’s got to be some honest people inside these parties, inside the media, inside the prosecution world, who basically say, “No, we’re not going to go along with the theft of democracy in the United States that has such serious consequences.” Listen, Harvey Wasserman, tell our listeners how they can reach you and we’re going to have to conclude, because we’ve run out of time.

Harvey Wasserman: Okay. It’s at freepress.org. You can write to us at truth@freepress.org or write to me, Harvey Wasserman at solartopia@gmail.com, S-O-L-A-R-T-O-P-I-A @gmail.com, and we are happy to answer any and all questions.

Ralph Nader: Thank you very much, Harvey Wasserman. If listeners wonder about Solartopia, Harvey Wasserman has been for years a major opponent of nuclear power and a major proponent of solar energy. Thank you very much, Harvey. To be continued.

Harvey Wasserman: Thank you, Ralph and thank you, guys. We’ll be back.

Steve Skrovan: We’ve been speaking with Harvey Wasserman, co-author with Bob Fitrakis of the upcoming book, The Strip & Flip Selection of 2016: Five Jim Crows & Electronic Election Theft.
Go to freepress.org for more information. We’re going to take a short break and come back and answer some listener questions. You're listening to the Ralph Nader Radio Hour. Back after this.
Russell Mohkiber: From the National Press Building in Washington, DC. This is your Corporate Crime Reporter Morning Minute for Wednesday, March 2, 2016. I’m Russell Mohkiber. Aubrey McClendon, the former CEO of Chesapeake Energy has been charged by a Federal grand jury with conspiring to rig bids for the purchase of oil and natural gas leases in Northwest Oklahoma. The indictment alleges that McClendon orchestrated a conspiracy between two large oil and gas companies to not bid against each other for the purchase of certain oil and natural gas leases in Northwest Oklahoma. During this conspiracy, the conspirators would decide ahead of time of who would win the leases. The winning bidder would then allocate an interest in the leases to the other company. Federal prosecutors said that McClendon formed and led a conspiracy to suppress prices paid to leaseholders in Northwest Oklahoma. His actions put company profits ahead of the interest of leaseholders entitled to competitive bids for oil and gas rights. For the Corporate Crime Reporter, I’m Russell Mohkiber.

David Feldman: Welcome back to the Ralph Nader Radio Hour. Don’t forget to go to nader.org and subscribe to Ralph’s weekly column. Ralph, we got a lot of positive feedback last week from your obvious question. Do you have an obvious question for this week?

Ralph Nader: Yes. These are obvious questions that are almost never asked. And that doesn’t mean there are no answers, it’s just that our culture doesn’t go to that level. And to ask the obvious question that’s never asked, you have to ask some preliminary questions that are often asked. So I’m going to direct this obvious question that’s never asked to Steve Skrovan, because last week, we asked you about music, David. And this week, I want to ask Steve the following preliminary questions.

Steve Skrovan: All right.

Ralph Nader: So Steve, you are a comedian.

Steve Skrovan: Some say, yes.

Ralph Nader: Yes. Yeah. When you go to Yale for the alumni reunions, you’re the star. You’re on the stage, you’re making them laugh. Do you like comedy?

Steve Skrovan: Yes, I do.

Ralph Nader: And do you like humor?

Steve Skrovan: Yes, of course.

Ralph Nader: Do you see any difference between the two?

Steve Skrovan: Between comedy and humor?

Ralph Nader: Yeah.

Steve Skrovan: Well, usually – and David should probably back me up on this - in our circles within the fraternity, if you call somebody ‘comedian’ that means they’re funny. If you call them a humorist, that means they’re not that funny.

Ralph Nader: And, you know, what kind of comedy do you like? There are all kinds of different categories.

Steve Skrovan: I’m partial to the kind that makes you laugh.

Ralph Nader: But you wouldn’t say that you prefer satire to standup fluff?

Steve Skrovan: Well, whatever makes me laugh is going to probably have a certain characteristic. If it’s too fluffy or something what we call in the business ‘hacky’, I’m not likely to laugh. And again, David will back me up. It’s tough to make comedians laugh. We generally – if we hear something funny, we don’t even laugh. We just say to the fellow comedian, “That’s funny.”

Ralph Nader: And did you think Bob Hope was funny? He was the famous comedian on radio years ago and his jokes were never more than two or three lines long.

Steve Skrovan: Right. Well, I mean he was probably funny in the context of his times and the context of his generation. I know he was very funny and still is in his movies playing sort of this pre-Woody Allen type character in his movies. I mean Woody Allen actually said that he was a big influence, Bob Hope was a big influence on his own movies. But just like in athletics, there is a – there’s a context of time and space.

Ralph Nader: So they wouldn’t be as funny today for example. What do you think of George Carlin’s type of comedy?

Steve Skrovan: George Carlin, I grew up on George Carlin. If you really listen closely to his comedy, especially the early years and even into the later years too that still was a theme for his, it was a lot about language, lot about word play. He had been compared to H.L. Mencken a lot.

Ralph Nader: Yeah.

Steve Skrovan: In his later years, he got very political, very bitter actually, too. So he always had – he was always interesting in the later years. He wasn’t always laugh-out-loud funny.

Ralph Nader: Would you agree, Steve Skrovan, that comedy is big business in America?

Steve Skrovan: Sure.

Ralph Nader: And would you agree that at least 10 times more television time is devoted to comedic shows and comedy, and comedic talks interviews then is devoted to serious important talk that affects the wellbeing of the American people.

Steve Skrovan: You know, I don’t know what the statistics would be on that.

David Feldman: Yes.

Steve Skrovan: David wants me to say, “yes.” I would say the more effective shows that deal with the political situation are comedic shows. I mean, there’s - listen of CNN, MSNBC, Fox, everything in between. They devote a lot of hours to supposedly serious talk. But for me, it’s the comedic shows, the Daily Show, John Oliver, the Colbert rapport, and this new show of Samantha Bee ‘Full Frontal’, I think they deal with it much more effectively, and they ask questions that the others don’t.
Ralph Nader: By the way, listeners, we’re talking with Steve Skrovan who was a prime scriptwriter for the successful TV show ‘Everybody Loves Raymond’. All right. So you like to make people laugh, right?

Steve Skrovan: I do.

Ralph Nader: Okay. Here’s the obvious unanswered question. Steve Skrovan, comedy is big business in America. Humor fills all kinds of books and tapes. You are a comedian.

Steve Skrovan: Uh-hmm.

Ralph Nader: And you say it only works when you make people laugh.

Steve Skrovan: Uh-hmm.

Ralph Nader: Here’s my question.

Steve Skrovan: Yes.

Ralph Nader: Why do you want to make people laugh?

Steve Skrovan: I think I want to make people because when they laugh, that’s kind of a mating call. People can’t laugh when they’re confused or bewildered or don’t understand something. So when you hit a joke right and they laugh, that is a point of clarity. Every laugh is a point of clarity, so you know that you have gotten through to somebody. I find that just a very powerful thing to be able to express yourself that way. And it's been proven over my career and lifetime, everybody wants to be funny and I think they want to be funny because that’s a very powerful thing to be.

Ralph Nader: Well, you mean in humor, there is truth to take the old adage?

Steve Skrovan: Of course.

Ralph Nader: Are you going that – are you going that far functionally?

Steve Skrovan: I would – of course. I think yeah, there’s got to be some truth to that and there’s a lot of power in truth.

Ralph Nader: Well, and what do you think of people who say, “I want to make people nervously laugh”? Like you have a lot of adolescents who constantly “heh, heh, heh, heh,” you know, doesn’t react to any joke or anything. It’s just nervous laughter. Do you think that that’s good thing?

Steve Skrovan: Well, nervous laughter can be a product of touching on a subject that is taboo. And there can be a lot of value in that, sure.

Ralph Nader: Good. Well, I think this is an interesting exchange. I think people ought to ask one another why are they paying so much money to make people laugh. Because laughter is big business and it’s a profitable business and they automatically say it’s a good thing and they ought to ask themselves, “Why do they think it’s a good think?” And if it’s too much of a good thing, Steve Skrovan…

Steve Skrovan: Uh-hmm.

Ralph Nader: It can drive out more serious exchanges and more serious time and more serious attitudes. In other words, a society can be inebriated with manufactured laughter.

David Feldman: Uh-hmm.

Ralph Nader: One last question.

Steve Skrovan: Yes.

Ralph Nader: And that is this, in what context is laughter the most intense and draining of a person? When they are laughing with their own friends or when they watch a TV comedic show? What’s the most intense laughter? And there have been studies showing that real intense, prolonged laughter is like physical exercise, literally.

Steve Skrovan: Well, the intenseist is when you're seeing it live and you’ll know – and David will back me up there again, you know, the people in front are laughing harder than the people in the back. And that’s not because the joke got less funny as it traveled back to the room. It’s because it’s really predicated on intimacy. So it’s very hard to make people laugh on television because they are way – that television is essentially - you’re way in the balcony there.

Ralph Nader: Is what you’re saying is that when you’re with friends, you have reached higher gales of laughter by far than you ever have watching a comedic show?

Steve Skrovan: Probably yes. Yeah, sure.

Ralph Nader: Yeah. That’s my experience too. Yup.

Steve Skrovan: Sure. Because there’s intimacy and there’s also shared knowledge and culture you have between you that is easily shorthanded.

Steve Skrovan: So I’m all for amateur laughing, more amateur laughing in communities, neighborhoods, homes. And stop funding all these fantastically expensive shows, which you fund through the advertising that they sell you.

David Feldman: Amen. Well, hang on.

Steve Skrovan: Wait a minute. Wait a minute, you. That’s our business!

David Feldman: Ralph, I’m trying to keep my mouth shut here but I didn’t call him this term “cheap grace.” I know Adam Clayton Powell’s father had written about cheap grace and I’ve told audiences, “You don’t deserve to laugh.” You know, when you talk about a wavy issue and then they laugh, it’s cheap grace. It’s like you’ve laughed it off and now you can forget about it. That’s the danger I think of political satire is that, “All right, I brought up something. We all laughed about it. Now, let’s get back to our lives.”

Ralph Nader: And, you know, Jon Stewart who was under no illusion that he said, “If you think watching my seven-minute segment is going to inform you about today’s news, then you're not thinking right.” So he had no illusions. But you’re right. You know, the millions of young people watch these political satire shows and it’s like, “Hey, look at that.” They make fun of the big boys and – in Wall Street and nothing happens after that. They don’t move from satire to any kind of
engagement politically in their own right. Anyway, this is a conversation that can be extended in future hours, but so we do want to get to some of our listener questions.

Steve Skrovan: Yes. We promised listeners questions. I'll take the first one since…

David Feldman: That was fun.

Steve Skrovan: Yes. And I don’t feel like I’m being…

David Feldman: We don’t – America – we don’t deserve fun, Ralph.

Steve Skrovan: Yes.

David Feldman: This was cheap grace.

Ralph Nader: We’ll see what the listeners reaction is to this one.

Steve Skrovan: All right. This first question is from Michael Pappas. And he was listening to last week’s show and he said, “I’m a second year student at Georgetown Medical School and was listening to your most recent radio hour.” He listens every week. Thank you. And he thought the coverage in the beef products was a good and crucial topic. But what he thought what was left out was that the huge environment impact of beef consumption and animal consumption in general, meaning in relation to water usage and global warming. And he brought up the documentary ‘Cowspiracy,’ which has been going around that talks about how animal agriculture causes more greenhouse gases than transportation. So he says, you know, “How come we eat meet knowing all of that?” And that’s kind of a question I tried to ask Denis Hayes things last week.

Ralph Nader: Well, on behalf of Denis in his book that he does talk about the global warming effect, the enormous amount of methane that comes from cow waste and the enormous consumption of water. I don’t have the right figure, but next time you eat a hamburger folks, it’s tons of water are required to take that hamburger to your dinner table from the corn that's grown and the drinking of the cattle, et cetera. Denis did cover it, and we didn’t spend too much time on that unfortunately in the program. So I’m glad that the student from Georgetown Medical School raised it.

Steve Skrovan: Take the next one, David.

David Feldman: This next question comes from Gerald Johnson. He writes, “Mr. Nader, you warned listeners against using credit cards. I use a credit card to pay for almost everything I buy. My card charges no annual fee and pays me at least 1% cash back every month on all purchases. I pay my monthly balance in full every month and never pay a penny in interest. I don’t have to carry cash, and the credit card is paying me several hundred dollars each year to use their card. Why won’t you endorse the use of credit cards for intelligent users?”

Ralph Nader: Because you’re exposing your privacy to a worldwide intrusion, misuse, including formal ways like credit scores and credit rating. And if you’re complaining off into an auto dealer for example or some other business and you press your complaints, then their last resort is to say, “You know, if you keep going this way, you’re going to damage your credit score. You’re going to damage your credit ratings.” So I don’t like that. The second is, the credit economy is inflationary. It induces impulsive buying, maybe not with our caller. But generally speaking, it does. And also, there’s always a percentage that’s added on to the retail price that your vendor has to transfer eventually to you, of course. And finally, I think we’re only seeing the beginning of the chattels around consumers from a total immersion in the credit and debit economy. And not only going into deeper and deeper debt, but also being flimflammed like, you know, I get 1% cash back. Yeah, but how much do they take from you before they give you a fraction of it back? It’s like the old Green Stamps. So we have to judge all this and the caller may like it this way. The caller may not worry about privacy, worry – not worry about credit rating, not make complaints that would generate lower credit score behind his back with unknown criteria. He may not object to all that. But I think a lot of people do. And that’s why favor as much as possible paying cash. And I think if cash payers organize, they can get discounts at Main Street all over America. I mean, you could do this and Consumers Union wanted to do this years ago. It didn’t get that far. But you’d have label on the window of a retailer saying, “We discount cash purchases.” I just read a story where people are getting significant discounts, if they pay cash for healthcare. And I mean, you know, 70, 80% in some cases. So it’s up to you how you want to interact with the modern economy.

David Feldman: Okay. I think we have time for one more question. This comes to us from Tim Harjo and he says, “It’s my understanding that there are several food processing plants in Clinton, Michigan, some include Vlasic and Frito Lay Incorporated. These products are sold nationwide. Have they used Flint water in their products? If so, have these products been tested? If these companies knew about the water, why didn’t they raise the alarm?

Ralph Nader: Excellent question. That’s another source of public alert that didn’t materialize. General Motors knew about the corrosion of their engine parts from the Flint River water and they switched sources and they did an osmosis test, and they didn’t alert the public. And by the way, my letter challenging GM about that was answered just recently by a GM official, who said that they didn’t test for lead. Well, if you do an osmosis test, it’s hard not to test for lead. They said they just test for a certain corrosive ingredient that affected their engine parts. My best answer to this caller is that these food companies usually have their own water decontamination processes. Like if you buy Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola claims that the water that they use for the drink goes through activated carbon systems and that if anything, they’re cleaner than your regular drinking water which has to go through pipes. So the question about Frito Lay and others is why didn’t you alert the people of Flint, because you automatically have to test your water when you're engaged in food processing just to cover your own risk pattern and liability?

Steve Skrovan: And that’s our show. Thank you for your questions. Keep them coming either on Ralph’s Facebook page or on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour website. I want to thank our guest today, Harvey Wasserman whose upcoming book in electronic voter fraud is The Strip & Flip Selection of 2016: Five Jim Crows & Electronic Election Theft.

David Feldman: A transcript of this episode will be posted on ralphnaderradiohour.com.

Steve Skrovan: For Ralph’s weekly blog, go to nader.org. For more from Russell Mohkiber, go to corporatecrimereporter.com.

David Feldman: Remember to visit the country’s only law museum, The American Museum of Tort Law in Winsted, Connecticut. Go to tortmeseum.org. I think I’m going to go visit there April 2nd, Ralph.

Ralph Nader: You’re welcome.

Steve Skrovan: The Producers of The Ralph Nader Radio Hour are Jimmy Lee Wirt, Matthew Marran. Our executive Producer is Alan Minsky. Our theme music, “Stand up, Rise up” was written and performed by Kemp Harris. Join us next week on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour. This was a lot of fun. Talk to you then, Ralph.

Ralph Nader: Thank you very much, Steve and David and listeners. This is your chance to help make this electronic voting machine scandal a major news item before the election. It goes to my point about this program. We can make it happen, but only you can make it effective.
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Re: Ralph Nader Radio Hour

Postby admin » Sat May 19, 2018 4:45 am

RALPH NADER RADIO HOUR EPISODE 195: The Difference Between Liberal and Progressive
December 9, 2017

Ralph and Washington Post columnist, E.J. Dionne debate the distinction between “Progressive” and “Liberal,” and Original Nader’s Raider, Robert Fellmeth tells us why he thinks speech on the Internet should not be anonymous.

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E. J. Dionne writes about politics in a twice-weekly column in the Washington Post and on the Post Partisan blog. He is also a senior fellow in governance Studies at the Brookings Institution (https://www.brookings.edu/), a government professor at Georgetown University and a frequent guest on NPR, ABC’s This Week and MSNBC. He is the author of seven books, the latest of which is “One Nation Under Trump: A Guide For the Perplexed, the Disillusioned, the Desperate, and the Not Yet Deported.”

“I don’t see the same sharp distinctions between the center/left and the left right now in the U.S. or – as you put it – between liberals and progressives. For example, take the issue of universal healthcare. Some of my progressive friends say that only single-payer is the way to go. I have nothing against single-payer. It’s a system that works in many countries. I also think that universal coverage that would essentially treat the health system as a public utility, which is kind of what you do in Germany or the Netherlands – that that would work as well. I think we should have a healthy argument about what’s going to work better, not some argument that says only single-payer is the way to achieve universal coverage.” E.J. Dionne

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After helping Ralph investigate the Federal Trade Commission as one of those original “Nader’s Raiders,” Robert Fellmeth became an attorney for the Center for the Study of Responsive Law, Ralph’s office in DC. In 1980, as a University of San Diego Law School faculty member, he founded that school’s Center for Public Interest Law. He is also the founder of the Children’s Advocacy Institute, one of the nation’s premiere academic, research, and advocacy organizations working to improve the lives of all children and youth, with special emphasis on reforming the child protection and foster care systems and improving outcomes for youth aging out of foster care.

“People talk about the right to speak and free speech on the utterance side. But that’s only one part of it. The other part of it is the right of the audience to weigh the credibility of the speaker. Who is that? What are their biases? What’s their expertise? The first amendment is not just defending the right of people to bleat, to make noise. It has a purpose in terms of ascertaining the truth, and developing the points of view, and educating people. And the identity of the speaker is critical to that function.” Robert Fellmeth

Love Me, I'm a Liberal
by Phil Ochs
Phil Ochs Jukebox

(In every American community, you have varying shades of political opinion, and one of the shadiest of these is the liberals. An outspoken group on many subjects, 10 degrees to the left of center in good times, 10 degrees to the right of center if it affects them personally, so here then is a lesson in safe logic:)

I cried when they shot Medgar Evers
Tears ran down my spine
And I cried when they shot Mr. Kennedy
As though I'd lost a father of mine

But Malcolm X got what was coming
He got what he asked for this time
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal
(Get it?)

I go to civil rights rallies
And I put down the old D.A.R.
(D.A.R., that's the dykes of the American Revolution)
I love Harry and Sidney and Sammy
I hope every colored boy becomes a star

But don't talk about revolution
That's going a little bit too far
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal

I cheered when Humphrey was chosen
My faith in the system restored
And I'm glad that the commies were thrown out
From the A.F.L. C.I.O. board

And I love Puerto Ricans and Negros
As long as they don't move next door
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal

Ah, the people of old Mississippi
Should all hang their heads in shame
Now I can't understand how their minds work
What's the matter, don't they watch Les Crain?

But if you ask me to bus my children
I hope the cops take down your name
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal

Yes, I read New republic and Nation
I've learned to take every view
You know, I've memorized Lerner and Golden
I feel like I'm almost a Jew

But when it comes to times like Korea
There's no one more red, white and blue
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal

I vote for the democratic party
They want the U.N. to be strong
I attend all the Pete Seeger concerts
He sure gets me singing those songs

And I'll send all the money you ask for
But don't ask me to come on along
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal

Sure once I was young and impulsive
I wore every conceivable pin
Even went to the socialist meetings
Learned all the old union hymns

Ah, but I've grown older and wiser
And that's why I'm turning you in
So love me, love me
Love me, I'm a liberal
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