Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Lessig Is Moar

Apparently, Chris Hayes thinks it is outrageous that the DNC has not invited the single-issue gimmick candidate Lawrence Lessig to participate in their upcoming multi-issue Presidential debate. Just think how enlivening it would be to hear Lessig turn literally every question into a discussion of campaign finance reform. Perhaps he could use his occasional turns to speak to do PowerPoint presentations in the manner of a TED Talk. With such contributions to dazzle them one wonders whether the pundit class would forget to devote every paragraph of their post-debate analysis to snark about Hillary's physical appearance and her inescapably sinister affect. You know, Hayes is right, it really is hard to fathom why so few Democrats are taking seriously a candidate who has promised to resign the Presidency even before he wins his party's nomination or attracts a single percentage point of support. Lessig may not get to be leader of the free world but he will never not be a Thought Leader amirite?

Over at the Lessig Presidential website, a click on "The Plan" leads to the following "strategy" to "make it happen" (these words are in quotes because, believe it or not, "plan" and "strategy" and so on are actually the words he is using to describe what follows):
Win the Presidency
Compel Congress to pass reform
Establish a government that works
You have to love that "Compel Congress" there. So pithy! Such vim! "Establish a government that works" -- now why hasn't anybody thought of that before? The "Collect Underpants" part after "Win the Presidency" is simply implied. (Yes, Lessig is promising an Election Reform Act most of the principles of which I find not only congenial but familiar from other proposals from actual Democrats running for actual office who don't promise to "crowdsource... the details" later.)

I wonder, if a techbro claimed to be running for President as a single-issue environmentalist and he promised he would build a weather machine technofix if he were elected President, would Chris Hayes take him seriously, too? The techbrotastic reductive obliviousness and frank narcissism of Lessig's, no doubt they will call it "quixotic," bid for attention in this silliest of silly seasons is truly a wonder to behold, if you ask me. Perhaps Lessig should seriously consider a white techbro Presidential ticket with transhumanoid robocultist Zoltan Istvan. Democracy and/or Singularity are assured! Don't blame me, I voted for Kodos.

1 comment:

jimf said...

> You have to love that "Compel Congress" there. So pithy! Such vim!

"In business and politics, the solution is to establish structures
that will take into account the deficiencies of the narcissist,
and counterbalance them. So if you have a narcissistic chief
executive officer in a company, you should establish a very
strong board of directors that will constantly look [at] what
the narcissist is doing, criticizing, mak[ing] offers, block[ing]
him sometimes, preventing [him] from making mistakes and
ruining the company. If you have a narcissistic politician
in a senior position like president or prime minister, you
should take care as a nation to establish structures which
will check this person, which will prevent him from taking over,
which will ameliorate and offset his disadvantages, his
problematic behavior, his lack of perception of reality, his
misjudgment, his bad decision making, and so on.
So, checks and balances, as the Americans call it, checks
and balances. The American constitution, for example, assumes
the distinct possibility that the American president would be
a narcissist. It is built, even though it was written 300
years ago almost, it's built to cope with narcissists.
It assumes the worst. And when you work with narcissists you
should assume the worst, prepare for the worst, and be surprised
by the gifts that narcissist does have to give. As I said,
narcissists are ambitious, they are natural-born leaders, they
are innovative, they're creative, they are highly intelligent
most of them, so they have a lot of gifts to give. But these gifts
are like the Trojan horse. They come with a huge price tag.
You need to build structures in politics and business to offset
this price tag."

Macedonian TV interview with Sam Vaknin
(Part 1/2, 22:08/31:43)