by Harold Evans May 14, 2014 5:45 AM EDT
National party politics are dead, but Ralph Nader argues in Unstoppable that there’s life after death in new political alliances that actually get things done.
Is Ralph Nader dreaming? When you hear what he has to say in Unstoppable about the emergence of a new bipartisan politics, you may be inclined to scoff. After all, this Don Quixote has tilted at the White House five times and five times broken his lance, and the exuberant optimism in his new book is at odds with the great glumness of our fractured times.
But check your skepticism. Nader, successively demonized and lionized, has consistently confounded naysayers by the insights from his intensively researched social campaigns. This time he is not erecting a platform for another run at the presidency, not endorsing a messiah candidate, not outlining a program for a political party. On the contrary, he is excited because his researches in D.C. and in countless grassroots meetings convince him there is a way to escape head-butting party politics altogether. He discerns it in the many surprising victories achieved by partnerships of conservative and progressives willing to put their party labels aside for a specific objective and only that. The little-noticed temporary alliances have been born out of frustration with the gerrymandered gridlock in Congress. They are being created on the run with popular support in the constituencies but with no other objective than getting some one particular thing done.