Pres-elec Barack has a shiny new website up an running called change.gov.
The initial purpose is to allow for transparency and discussion while he builds a cabinet team capable of cleaning up the mess in government accrued over the last few years.
Speculators say the days of fireside chats with the president on saturday mornings over the radio in the living room are over. It’s interesting to have a president who is very tech savvy, ready to change the way we communicate, and has changed the way campaigns communicate/raise money.
He ran the most successful campaign in history. Conspiracy theorists can argue that some of the money raised on the website was through anonymous ‘visa type gift cards’ – campaign finance laws state that you do not have to refuse any money, but should give unidentified (or over contributed individual funds) back to the person donating. In the case of random gift card donations, there is no one to trace the funds back to. So what – water under the bridge imho.
The point is – you can leverage the internet regardless of you business, service, idea – so anything you create that is worth talking about, can be talked about with the greatest of ease and laziness. Just perfect for the ADD generation. The trick is to actually be creating something worth talking about. For more resources on how to do that, read anything Seth Godin writes.
The Change dot Gov site could really be a cool public forum, in which the voice of the people – aka true democracy – is actually disseminated, organized, measured, and most importantly, listened to. Someone should figure out how to catalogue all the comments/opinions, because anyone familiar with open forums knows the majority of the posts are junk – but great ideas tend to rise to the top.
Exciting times, indeed.
In the words of Abraham Lincoln:
…That this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
“In the case of random gift card donations, there is no one to trace the funds back to.”
Ironically, the McCain site did not allow these as they thought the donations would not only be unethical, but become fodder for detractors.
My big question, is when we see Emanuel ushered in as chief of staff and some of the other names of Washington insiders being banterred about, I wonder when the change is going to be coming… or are we going to give Obama the standard “all politicians lie” pass?
I’m fine with ‘insiders’ being a part of the change. It’s primarily about leadership in my opinion. It would be foolish to think that Obama could come into the white house, fire everyone who knows anyone, and start anew. Not only would that be losing any ‘talent’ that already exists, and knows how the systems work, but would create a new fire storm of ‘who are all these unvetted people, blah blah blah’.
Regardless of the appointments that are made, people will be unhappy. As far as making change happen – to make the rhetoric come true – time will need to pass. Last time I checked there was no staples easy-button in the oval office.