The Last President

I have a new life goal. I want to run for President on the Anarchist ticket in 2024. I’ll lose, but the campaign will fuel an interest in the party that gets a Senator elected from Montana. In 2028, I run again and win on the platform of being the Last President of the United States. Over the first four years I’ll dismantle the judicial and penal systems and replace them with distributed systems. During my second term, we do away with the military, taxation, and finally each person becomes their own sovereign entity in a complete democracy.

U.S. Presidential Seal

I’m not the last President because all the problems magically go away, I’m the last President because we figure out a way to deal with the logistics of running a society without concentrating so much power in the hands of any one individual.

My dad did his Masters research on the effectiveness of in-patient versus out-patient programs in psychotherapeutic outcomes. He found that the best way to treat someone is to do so within the environment where they will be living and maintaining the change they are trying to make in their lives. Even people who are serious about making a change have to be able to practice.

In 1986, he was serving as the director of Child and Family services for Bristol Regional Medical Center when he found out that our State Representative was a part of a plan to build a new psychiatric hospital and the contract was going to a friend of the politician. I have a picture of him standing on the site where they are breaking ground for the new hospital announcing his campaign to oust the corrupt Representative.

He won. On a campaign popularized by signs hand spray painted on particle board and speeches standing on the bed of his pickup truck, he managed to generate the momentum to take on what was considered to be an unassailable opponent.

ToDo: Get a copy of that picture and stick it here.

The problem is once he got to Nashville he knew about the issues that he was passionate about, but there were lots of issues he knew nothing about. This isn’t a failing of my father, our government is a massive organization, no one is going to have a well-formed opinion on more than a few opinions. For everything else they need someone to synthesize the pertinent points on the issue and feed them. Where the system has a problem is that whoever I trust to feed me information is going to intentionally or unintentionally pass their biases on to me.

I watched Oliver Stone’s W while home. There’s a scene where Bush gets whipped in a debate and resolves to not let it happen again. He has the uninformed politician problem in spades, and unfortunately he relies on Dick Chaney and Karl Rove to fill his blanks. Not that they were bad people, but they didn’t realize that empires can’t be maintained in an age that understands asymmetric warfare. Their oversight became W’s oversight, and we invaded Iraq without UN support — the worst foreign policy decision in the last 100 years.

It’s not that I want to overthrow the government, I want to make it obsolete. Hierarchical control structures have systemic pressures (like the uninformed politician problem) that lead to corruption over time. There’s no way to solve the problem other than to put the control of various policy issues in the hands of those most interested and informed. We’ve never lived in a world where that was possible before, but if we work at it, we can in another 15 years.

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