in an election year where either party’s candidate seems absurd depending on which side you’re on, it’s easy to focus on the best choice in 2016. yet, i view this election as merely the local maximum, to use a design term, instead of the kind of candidate we need, desperately.
a few notes before i get started…
i don’t closely follow news or politics, but i’m guessing i do so more than most of the country.
i’ve supported candidates on both sides and generally disregard the impact of the president. not much seems to change regardless of who is in power. it’s hard to turn the ship very much.
i’ve largely voted 3rd party all my life (not that it mattered much since i’ve lived in texas, new york, and california -- states that are called red or blue the moment polls close).
parties frustrate me since policies are fluid. inevitably the sitting president ends up taking a position the used to belong to the other side. e.g. didn’t republicans used to like free trade before trump showed up? e.g. didn’t democrats like to support civil liberties before snowden showed up under obama’s watch?
with that said, a few assumptions that i’m working under…
the economy has changed dramatically. pandering to factory workers is a waste of time.
education is broken. school is not the answer to economic equality or advancement.
government's sole duty is to unburden its citizens and open opportunities.
so, my ideal candidate for president, which could easily come from either party at this point…
someone who is loathe to protect dying industries. the state of new york, for example, just banned airbnb. how is any major party’s candidate not against this? there is no better example of the internet disrupting the old, which will lead to productivity and economic gains, but the government is getting in the way. either party could and should own the platform of internet disruption and opportunity.
someone who doesn’t add to the debt. whether or not the united states should be a hegemon is up for debate. the structure of tax policy is up for debate. how we address entitlements is up for debate. what should not be up for debate is spending (whether on wars or governmental programs) that put america deeper in debt.
someone who moves our collective thinking forward. i can’t believe it’s 2016 and abortion or gay rights is an issue that matters to people. democrats are about civil liberties. republicans are about the government staying out of personal business. how are we all not on the same page of getting antiquated issues out of the debate?
someone who can see issues in multiple dimensions. for example, immigration is not simply about national security. for me, it’s largely an economic issue and a way to move the country forward. the fact is america is still where the best and brightest want to live and work. i don’t care if you’re a dishwasher or software engineer, you should be able to come to this country to work if you want.
finally, someone who doesn’t pander to fear but moves our country forward. borders, lines, and alliances have never been more fluid. both state lines and international, the internet is changing everything. the only way america competes is by embracing our biggest competitive advantage -- the fact that everyone wants to do business here. from fundraising to legalities, the united states is still where everyone wants to live, invest, and vote.
here’s to a fun election day… and a better one to follow hopefully not too many cycles down the road.