Ralph Nader, was identified as a “former presidential candidate” by CNET several days ago – hardly his claim to fame – old guys like me, remember him more for his 1965 expose – Unsafe at Any Speed – which took a powerful swing at the North American auto industry.
His evisceration of the Chevrolet Corvair (my first car incidentally), established Nader as a rogue consumer advocate. It is fair to say however, that all consumer advocates were viewed as suspicious by the establishment at that time.
So, was Nader correct in his condemnation of the Corvair as a “death trap.” Not exactly. At least, not according to a 1972 study (completed well after the fact, you’ll notice), conducted by Texas A&M University on behalf of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Their conclusion – “the 1960–1963 Corvair possessed no greater potential for loss of control than its contemporaries in extreme situations.” In other words, Nader’s “study” was bullshit.
Taking advantage of the truism that “bullshit baffles brains” – not a detriment it seems, to a media created legend – in the following years, Nader stayed in the public eye pontificating on issues as diverse as -
Ralph Nader on Abortion, Ralph Nader on Budget & Economy, Ralph Nader on Civil Rights, Ralph Nader on Corporations, Ralph Nader on Crime, Ralph Nader on Drugs, Ralph Nader on Education, Ralph Nader on Energy & Oil, Ralph Nader on Environment, Ralph Nader on Families & Children, Ralph Nader on Foreign Policy, Ralph Nader on Free Trade, Ralph Nader on Government Reform, Ralph Nader on Gun Control, Ralph Nader on Homeland Security, Ralph Nader on Technology, Ralph Nader on War & Peace.
Believe it or not, this is an incomplete list. The full list is available at On The Issues.
It’s clear to me, that this man is a studious expert on EVERYTHING. So his observation, that “Video game firms are ‘electronic child molesters’”, recently spewed out during an interview at Politico, must have value. It must be an astute and educated observation – one that’s denied to the average person.
We just don’t have the background I suppose, to be able to digest a complex set of issues like video games – gun violence – and, the existence (or not), of a link between them – readily identified by Nader.
We just don’t understand as Nader puts it – that video games producers “odious fare is becoming more coarse, more violent, and more interactive to seduce these youngsters into an addiction of direct video game involvement in the mayhem.”
It’s extraordinary that none of this has anything to do of course, with the ready availability of sophisticated weapons, a culture of gun insanity, a heritage of violence as a method of settling grievances, in the United States – a set of circumstances shared virtually nowhere else in the developed world.
Nader would have us set all that aside (along with our common sense), and have us instead, be guided through the forest of his misconceptions, distorted studies, and outright lies (most particularly on this issue) – by an expert at everything – Ralph Nader.
Just thinking about this moron makes my head hurt. Why, for the love of all we hold sacred, does the media give this idiot a forum in which to push forward his nonsense – his facts – his simple solutions to complex issues. Poorly identified issues at that. But, then it’s the media – isn’t it?
The media and the “facts” – an oxymoron if there ever was one!
As regular reader and occasional guest author Mark Schneider remarked here yesterday – “Ralph Nader – desperate for attention and relevance. I’ll continue to ignore him as I have for 40 years.”