|In These Times Review
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In 1966, General Motors, the most powerful corporation in the world, sent private investigators to dig up dirt on Ralph Nader, an obscure thirty-two-year-old public interest lawyer, who had written a book critical of one of their cars, the Corvair.
The scandal that ensued after the smear campaign was revealed, launched Ralph Nader into national prominence and established him as the leader of the modern Consumer Movement. Over the next thirty years and without ever holding public office, Nader built a legislative record that rivals any contemporary president. Many things we take for granted including seat belts, airbags, product labeling, no nukes, even the free ticket you get after being bumped from an overbooked flight are largely due to the efforts of Ralph Nader and his citizen groups.