A few weeks ago I was listening to NPR and heard that Ralph Nader had written a novel, a parody called, Only the Super Rich Can Save Us. When the book list came from PopMatters.com the following week offering Nader’s book as a title, I found myself selecting it, largely out of curiosity.
In the book, Nader fictionalizes the super rich of America. The book stars Warren Buffet, who decides after Hurricane Katrina that the government stinks, and that he and other super rich people should save the world. He calls together a round table in Hawaii, and then the rich go on to change the world. Kind of a cute idea, I thought.
Then the book came. 736 pages. This is the man who said he was going to save the environment??? What the hell could he possibly have to say that would require the use of that much paper? So, yes: I opened to page 1 already feeling hostile. But that doesn’t mean that I’m not completely unbiased when I say: Nader is a mediocre writer and a terrible humorist. Am I supposed to think it’s funny that Warren Buffet drinks Cherry Coke every two pages? I’m not sure. But clearly, “How To Be Funny For Dummies,” or whatever book Nader read to help him create this attempt at satire, advised him that quirks and repetition were useful devices.
What’s worse, is that after he’s done trying to be funny, Nader sinks his text with disjointed passages that sound like campaign platforms. Dude, we heard you the first time. We didn’t elect you. Move on!
I need to be honest. I’m not that far into this book. If the radio show is right, Nader’s going to suggest some ways that the super rich could save the world, which will be cool. But I already don’t want to read anymore. I don’t want to carry all 736 pages of it on the subway with me anymore. I also think it says something important about Nader’s character.
Nader is a professional encroacher. First, he helps Bush win by stealing important Democrat votes. Now, he’s stealing book deals from writers that can actually write. Everybody knows there’s an acquisition freeze. Let the real writers get the book deals! (And if you’re going to be a non-writer and write a book, at least get a ghost writer like the athletes do so your book doesn’t completely suck.)
Did I mention I’m becoming a yoga teacher and giving up anger?