The last time I had fun at a counter-Inaugural was when Nixon was sworn in, on January 20, 1973. As he launched his second term with the traditional piece of perjury about upholding the law, we all looked forward to four more years, but of course Nixon was gone in less than two, which proves yet again it's always a mistake to lower one's expectations.
No one has ever said that Nixon didn't win the popular vote and the Electoral College fair and square in 1972. He came by his victory at the polls honestly enough, unlike George W. Bush, with his prime-time coup d'état. Watergate seeped out slowly over two years, amid just the same sort of cries from Republicans and most of the press for "closure" (i.e., letting Nixon off the hook) as we've just endured. There should be some formal, legally based venue now in which evidence about the stolen election can steadily pile up, day by day. Even as I type these words, St. Clair sends me a news story from the Orlando Sentinel, starting as follows:
tavares–An inspection of more than 6,000 discarded presidential ballots in Lake County on Monday revealed that Vice President Al Gore lost a net 130 votes that were clearly his even in a conservative, GOP bastion.
What an opportunity for the radicals, the Greens, our crowd by any useful name! A stolen election, wrought by expedients so coarsely apparent that the only thing the respectable opinion-formers can do is avert their eyes and call for "closure." And better yet, the Democratic Party is as eager as the Republicans to change the subject from the poll-rigging and abuse of minority rights in Florida.
I wish Ralph Nader had been, over the past few weeks, as vociferous as Jesse Jackson, who is now calling for a series of voter-registration rallies across the country, January 15-19, with the theme of "Count the Vote–Every Vote Counts."
Maybe I've missed them, but I've seen no reports of Nader holding rallies and press conferences to emphasize that the entire saga of the stolen election proves his fundamental point this year about the utter corruption of the two-party system. (The Democrats, like other parties with more revolutionary pretensions than theirs, have made it consistent policy to imprison the party's most loyal supporters. The prison and jail population in Clinton-time has ballooned to more than 2 million. Count how many lost votes that meant for the party last November 7.)
I fear that Nader is stuck in a defensive posture, dealing with all those accusations that he spoiled things for Gore. Let's just stipulate that he did, that he was correct in so doing and that now it's time to move on and start setting our agenda for the next four years. No one attacks the Democratic Leadership Council for denying Gore the presidency, though the gutless campaign run by two of its members, Gore and Lieberman, can in vast measure be ascribed to this same repellent council.