Ralph Nader, the legendary consumer advocate, political activist and repeat presidential candidate, has a new book out later this month that could add some heat to the national protests inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement.
The title, “Getting Steamed to Overcome Corporatism,” is a beautiful blend of the colloquial and the wonky — a perfection reflection of Nader himself through the years. And the message remains vintage Nader. The man who led the charge to get legislation to mandate seatbelts and other safety features in cars is still going after corporate America. He is also still trying to get Americans to march in step with his outrage at what he calls in the book “corporate abuses, harms and crimes.”
“Getting Steamed” is a compilation of reported corporate outrages from 2009 with Nader’s commentary — all geared to “get you steamed for action,” he writes.
“Throughout our history,” he adds, “enough Americans finally became steamed against slavery, for women’s right to vote, for better treatment of workers and farmers, for protection of consumers and the environment. That’s when conditions started changing for the better.”
Nader has spoken out in favor of the Occupy Wall Street movement and has sent his encouragement to the throngs. Back in October, he posted his rallying cry on his Web site: “Keep expanding the numbers of Americans who show up all over, who stay, who discover each other’s talents and the emerging power of the powerless. Go to 300,000, then 800,000, then 2 million and onward.”
On Monday, Nader spoke about the movement and his book with Scott Harris of the progressive radio news magazine Between the Lines.
With the revival of activism, Nader may sense he can get back into the driver’s seat.
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