You remember those old movies from the 1930s? Filled with frugal people and their quaint lifestyles? I’m starting to worry that it’s not all memories. First it was the Murphy beds everywhere — two big Murphy bed-only stores popping up near us, and then the Murphy bed at the condo we stayed at in Palm Springs — which, let’s face it, I hadn’t until then encountered a single Murphy bed during my life. Then it was the gigantic, aisle-dominating displays of canning-related goods at Bed, Bath and Beyond. Seriously, they probably had more canning stuff than Tupperware.
Yep, we’re back in the bad old days, that’s for sure. No more throwing away our leftovers or sleeping in rooms entirely separate from those in which we spend our waking hours; it’s time to cut back! 1930 has returned. Fiscal prudence is good, but I’d hoped not to have to make myself master of botulism or sleep inside the wall.
I suppose that leaves us at a good place to talk about the imminent election, coming up in only a month. See, I’m frustrated: I don’t understand why anyone’s ok with the really, really miserable economy we have right now. Worse, from the point of view of the work I do, I feel like it’s headed further downhill. That’s really bad. While I greatly admire the resourcefulness and persistence of the Greatest Generation, I don’t think we all need to learn the same lessons as them in exactly the same way. It would be nice to be prosperous.
Now, I have a number of ideas of why things have turned out this way. But it’s election season, and I do think it’s probably time for me to be a bit more open-minded. So, I’m planning to spend the next month getting a better idea of what the various people I can vote for (or against!) are offering.
My perspective — as you might guess from the opening up above — is that the economy is problem #1. Further, I think that big issues, like the environment, education, China, and Iran, can all be looked at usefully through the lens of “gosh, the economy’s sure screwed up, what can we do over the short, medium, and long term to fix it?” Because ultimately we want to be rich, comfortable, and not blown up, and two out of three doesn’t really do it.
My perspective is further affected by the facts that:
- I’m a big stats geek, so I expect numbers to add up and events predicted to be actually likely
- I help people plan big, complicated things like designing and launching a new product or a new business every day, so I expect any plan to be full of specifics (or it doesn’t count as a plan)
I think that pretty much tells me what I’m looking for: people who have a specific, measurable, reality-based (in that it makes basic assumptions that can be measured and which are true right now) plan. People with proposals that aren’t specific or aren’t new also aren’t welcome.
And that’s really what I stand for here. I think everyone out there, from our President to the party not in power to our country’s bureaucracy has royally screwed up the current economic situation. Despite being a lifelong Democratic voter who thinks that the Republican party is racist, I’m prepared to vote for whoever I think will actually fix things. So, let’s see if I get impressed by any of these clowns out there. Because I want to get things fixed before this turns into a situation in which I can may leftovers and the wife and I pull our bed down from the wall every night and tie up our pillows to lift the whole thing back in, in the morning.