Off Topic – But Really Interesting

Okay. By now you’re probably bored to tears of the 2012 election coverage. Blah blah blah. Same old people saying the same old boringly wrong stuff.

That’s why this is an intriguing idea: Americans Elect 2012. While I don’t quite get if their strategy makes legal sense, in short: get moderates to register what they care about, match them up with politicians, technocrats, or real people who share their ideas and are interested in office, and then get them there, from outside the two-party system.

It’s also fun in a Web 2.0 sort of way. You get quizzed on how you think the country should move forward, and they show you how many other people in which states thought the same way, and how you rank in your level of concern against the site average.

Then you can browse a listing of  executive potentials and how they answered (or would answer) the same questions. You can track the ones who strike you as right-headed.

It’s an interesting social experiment, if nothing else. And I know it’s a bright 300,000 who are already using it, because the 3rd most tracked potential is Jon Huntsman, my personal republican fav, but who doesn’t even get ranked in The Economist. (Least tracked person: Clarence Thomas.)

There’s also a debate section where you can post questions for political candidates to answer. I have no idea who is going to ask them when, but it’s fun to skim and hit the plus or minus button on them.

Anyway, hop on over and check it out.

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6 thoughts on “Off Topic – But Really Interesting

  1. It looks like a RINO fest. If you’re a democrat, just pick one. Why the need to pick a democrat that calls himself republican? There’s a reason Huntsman can’t get more than 1-3% of the primary voters. Also, thumbs down to any site that puts Clarence Thomas last. 😦

  2. I want Chris Christie to run for prez. Every single one of the candidates now are jokes. Christie is the man America needs!

  3. guyinla: the ranking is strictly who is following who. The site doesn’t rank them. But the site’s users realize that Clarence Thomas isn’t worth following because he’s not going to take office.

  4. Am I the only one clicking “unsure” about at least half of the issues? And/or doing a quick wikipedia read before choosing? Carbon trading?

  5. Ha, you’re right. However, moderates generally fall into one of three categories: People that have strong opinions on both ends of the spectrum, like Ron Paul; very left foreign policy and very right domestic policy. So they can’t be placed in one party. Then there are those that don’t have strong opinions on issues and just like to get along with everyone, and can be swayed from one side to the other. They tend to hop from one side to the other in every other election, because there are always things incumbents do that get them attacked. And lastly, there are those that are just totally disinterested in the whole process, and if they happen to vote it’ll be on a whim along the lines of “that candidate seems like a nice guy”(think hope and change). Moderates in the first group often vote for third -party candidates, of whom there is no shortage. My point is those that care already have their third-party candidates, and those that don’t will not begin to care from a site like this. There’s nothing wrong with a two-party system; the electorate just needs to be more engaged and hold members of their own party accountable via primaries.
    p.s. I’m just wondering if you’re really into politics or more of a casual observer.

  6. relarela: It depends on how into this stuff you are. Carbon trading also goes by “cap-and-trade/tax”. It was a bill that aimed to limit pollution from factories. It died in the senate, I believe that was about a year-and-a-half ago.

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