Monday, March 02, 2009

An Unreasonable Man

An Unreasonable Man is a fascinating documentary that explores Ralph Nader's consumer protection and social activist work and his family background, then moves on to follow his horrifically fascinating run for president in 2000, and how that turned him into a pariah in many of the liberal circles in which he was formerly regarded as a champion.

This is a very even-handed film, in which a variety of people are interviewed, including Ralph Nader, himself. I came away feeling very sad that Nader's early triumphs, protections that most of us take for granted, have been eclipsed by the fact that he might have inadvertently put George W. Bush in the Whitehouse (Harley Hahn has a very concise article about what Ralph Nader has accomplished for us). Nader is depicted as a man with tragically black-and-white vision, even in his personal life, if it can be referred to that way. He states that he never married because he felt that he could not have both a serious career and raise a family: you're either there for your kids, or you're not.

And, to be fair about what happened in 2000, nobody knew what George W. Bush would do to us, nobody. Plenty of democrats voted for Bush and Bill Clinton did not exactly do much for Al Gore, either. However, that Nador insisted on running again, being so stubborn with his "we need a third party" movement, was indeed unreasonable.

Ralph Nador has a fascinating mind, and he is not someone who should be called irrelevant, but obviously he has harmed himself with his tactics. He says that he doesn't care about his legacy, and I believe he's sincere about that.

Anyway, this documentary is worth seeing, if you haven't, already. (I liked it!)


Nessa said...

Nador is an interesting person.

Tom & Icy said...

You either like him or you don't, oh, that's being too black and white about him. Just kidding, but we do wonder why some people are that way, maybe they really have complex and often conflicting ideas but want things to be simple. Maybe like a neurotic does the same things all the time, b/w thinkers wants to easily categorize and organize things to make life seem simple or understandable instead of chaotic and inconceivable. Like that. sort of. Maybe. Maybe not. Being b/w is not so simple. Heck, we're confused and don't know what we're talking about.

Doug said...

It sounds good. I don't blame him for swinging the 2000 election. I tend to think we need independent politicians more than Al Gore.

Bone said...

I never blamed Nader for 2000. I always thought it was that segment of the population who thought the deciding factor in determining the leader of the free world should be which guy you'd feel more comfortable having a beer with.

actonbell said...

Nessa, indeed he is.
LOL, Tom:)
I usually agree, Doug, even if I do like Al Gore.
Bone, that's the truth. He went out for a beer run and came back the leader of the free world.

actonbell said...
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