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How the Right is Shredding the Vote

Populism is the theme when America’s #1 populist, Jim Hightower, joins Ralph to outline the six ways the right is trying to shred our vote this November. Also, we learn how the Trump Administration’s policies have really affected Iowa’s farming community from Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and co-editor of the Progressive Populist, Art Cullen.

Jim Hightower is a syndicated columnist, national radio commentator, and America’s Number One populist.  He has written many books including Swim Against the Current: Even a Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow. Mr. Hightower is a board member of Public Citizen. He is also a founding member of Our Revolution, an organization inspired by the issues brought up in the Bernie Sanders campaign. Along with that, he writes a monthly newsletter called the Hightower Lowdown.

“You can understand the Republicans wanting to steal the election, but why do the Democrats just roll over? Why don’t they make this a priority? And there hasn’t even been a presidential candidate make a priority, much less congressional leaders. Some of our Democratic leaders are weaker than Canadian hot sauce, when it comes to standing up for the people’s most fundamental right.”

Jim Hightower, America’s Number One Populist

Art Cullen is half the ownership and 25% of the news staff of the Storm Lake Times, located in Storm Lake, Iowa and which he founded with his brother, John. Mr. Cullen is the winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. He won that for his editorials taking on corporate agribusiness for fouling the state’s water and despoiling its soil. His book about that is entitled Storm Lake: A Chronicle of Change, Resilience, and Hope From a Heartland Newspaper. Mr. Cullen edits the newspaper, The Progressive Populist.

“40% of Iowa farm income this year will come from government disaster payments as opposed to the markets.”

Art Cullen, author of Storm Lake: A Chronicle of Change, Resilience, and Hope From a Heartland Newspaper

“Iowa farmers have been losing money seven years in a row. And there are half as many as there were in 1980.”

Art Cullen, author of Storm Lake: A Chronicle of Change, Resilience, and Hope From a Heartland Newspaper


“Trump is trumpeting his aid to farmers. [Yet] this relief bill that Congress passed, a lot of that money that was headed for farm country ended up in the hands of the big agribusiness and giant farms, not in the hands of small farmers.”

Ralph Nader

Ralph Nader Radio Hour Ep 341 Transcript (Right click to download)


  1. Elizabeth Axtell says:

    Often on Radio Hour comments are made about problems with the Electoral College and how it needs to be changed or abolished. Maybe we need to also look at the U.S. Senate. It is not a democratic institution, each state gets two senators–regardless of population. Especially now, under the Republicans and Mitch McConnell, the Senate is not doing anything to help ordinary Americans suffering the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. It wants only to stay in power. Maybe it is time to change or get rid of the Senate. Please comment on this.

    • Afdal Shahanshah says:

      What is “democratic”, really? Is it just when a body is proportional to the number of people it claims to represent? If you asked the ancient Greeks, they certainly would not have considered the US House to be democratic either. Aristotle outlines clearly in his “Politics” that the Athenians considered all such institutions to be oligarchic in nature because it’s always the upper classes of society that actually have the free time and resources to run for office. In fact, for hundreds if not thousands of years the word “democracy” was taken by those actually aware of the word to mean a system of governance where government officials were selected by a system of random lots (just like jury duty). It was only sometime around the late 18th or early 19th century that an Orwellian word inversion occurred associating electoral systems with rule by the people.

      We should absolutely get rid of the Senate, and then go even further by transforming the House into a citizen legislative body with members chosen regularly through sortition.

  2. Donald Klepack says:

    Would voting ID stop voter fraud? Example, your middle name is missing, you recently moved, you look to young… etc. Maybe block chain voting the same way banks use it to deposit and withdraw money.

  3. NooN says:

    Secretary of Agg woke me when he explained that Corporations R buying FARMLAND up…
    Plucking Forrest’s of Trees, then Strip Mining
    from the Tree’s Virgin Minerals. Since they $ell the Dirt toLandscapers; sand for CONCRETE, & Minerals to be RadioActivated for War Material
    What’s to dropping concrete into the Tree Roots AreA☠️or☠️CHAIN.ReACTION FRACKING MATERIALS 👀Former Secty Agg Hightower tells ELIZABETH WARREN offered a RECOMMENDABLE FARM PROGRAM.
    I am Impressed.
    BRIBING Elected Representatives & officials;
    EMBEZZLING Pentagon Funds;
    One Should Never Usurp Justice
    because JUSTICE is what MAN has been
    Trying to Build since Socrates asked Plato
    “What if there were a Ring of Invisibility”
    “Wood U Still Desire to be Be HonesT”(?)(?)

    Do the Rich have a Short Stop in a Fluffy Federal Camp so the Wealthy see what a Great Investment it is for them, too (?)(?)☠️

    👉🏿Yet a person selling individual cigarettes
    for Food or Rent gets choked & killed.👈🏽
    Thank you all; yes we have work to do together.

  4. NooN says:

    Admiral Bucky Fuller suggested we VOTE by C0MPUTER. For years I have wondered “HoW”(?) believe if we used R SPECIAL 6 PERSONAL #’s:
    Birth Certificate
    Social security
    Drivers iD or License

  5. Afdal Shahanshah says:

    Nothing about election fraud and election insecurity… Again? This is like the fifth discussion about voter suppression on the show this year, and you STILL won’t touch the twin subject of election fraud? What are you afraid of, Ralph? People smearing your public image as a conspiracy theorist? Is that actually it? Or is it the cognitive dissonance of accepting the truth just too uncomfortable?

    Hightower should be careful about that claim of “not spending enough to fund voting machines” being used as a suppression strategy. In addition to being cartoonishly insecure vectors for manipulating vote counts, the voting and counting machine industry is also a huge private racket. Very often county clerks actually spend more money simply maintaining these machines than it would cost to run a paper-ballot election.

    Also find it really disappointing to hear no pushback on Hightower’s establishment-serving lesser evilism from four-time Independent and 3rd-party presidential candidate Ralph Nader. I’m sure he would vote for Paul von Hindenburg too.

    • Skro35 says:

      Afdal, Ralph has spoken often about paper ballots being the most secure, and we have had a number of programs devoted to fraud in 2000 and 2004. He has also spoken about Diebold and other corporations having the ability to rig voting machines. You are best on this page when you are analyzing issues and not questioning anyone’s motives. I suggest you stick to the former. When you have done as much as Ralph has done to stand up to power and taken as much abuse as he has from the powerful and still remain undeterred, then maybe you can get your own show and cover these topics any way you want. Steve

      • Scott Hazelton says:

        Great points. I get a lot out of listening to Ralph and his guests. He’s one of the few, very few, moderators whom I enjoy inserting his comments into the monologues of his guests. He does so in a courteous way, but when he talks, he speaks volumes. Thank you Skro35 for your feedback to Afdhal. I cannot stand half-baked intellectualism as much as the next person. I do not think a crash-course in Aristotelian thought on ‘Democracy’ will help me understand the show’s import any better. It’s not rocket surgery.

    • Mark Hughes says:

      Yeah I had problems with Hightower’s discussion also. With all the talk of fraud, he neglected to mention the Democratic Party kicking the Green Party off the ballot in Pennsylvania. We’re supposed to vote for these honorable, “pushable” people. Ok.

    • Dave Carlson says:

      I was a life long Schwab guy until this show. Schwab is definitely the best broker out there…now what?