> Change


Posted on Tuesday, January 5, 2010 | No Comments

Following Mike Arrington’s list of top things in tech 2009, Jason Calacanis of Mahalo fame recently put together his list of top in tech which you can find here. Right there in the middle of his list was his electric Tesla Roadster car which was included alongside the following rant:

RANT: For over a year, I haven’t visited a gas station and have been able to
give the finger to the bastards in the Middle East who believe that women and
gays are about as valuable as dogs, and that the freedoms we enjoy in the United
States are the root causes of all evil. If Obama had any leadership ability, as
opposed to his consensus-building nonsense, he would have taken the billions
we’re going to spend in Afghanistan and simply spent that money on electric car
and solar subsidies in America. We have to stop wasting our money building
schools and bridges for backwards societies that don’t appreciate them and start
spending that money on energy independence. There is no reason we couldn’t put
solar panels on every rooftop in America, and electric cars in every driveway,
instead of spending money fighting enemies that don’t want the freedom we’re
promoting. Sorry about the rant, but I’m really frustrated that Obama, who I
voted for, is such a disappointment. He was supposed to bring some innovation to
politics and his policies feel no different than the failed strategies of
Cheney/Bush (in that order). If I was president, I would cut our losses in the
Middle East and stop sending any money there, instead investing it in nuclear,
solar, wind and EVs. This is such an obvious solution to everyone except the
idiots we put in power. Shame on all of us. END RANT

It absolutely amazes me that the Americans have openly come out and criticised Obama one year into his Presidency – particularly over healthcare and Iraq. The healthcare thing I admit I don’t really get; he saw a way to improve it and on the back of his “change” campaign that got him elected he tried to change it for the better, only to come up against a backlash of protest. Here in the UK we have the NHS – and whilst we complain about it and dream of it being vastly better, its still a lot better than having to deal with insurance companies every time you need to visit the doctor or hospital and charged for your care like in the US.

The “War On Terror” bit however, I don’t really know why Obama is under being judged so harshly, it wasn’t his war he inherited that problem from the previous administration and has had to progress with an aggressive strategy that he perhaps wouldn’t have pursued had the US not been so far into Iraq that they are now committed to finding a suitable exit strategy.

I do love Calacanis’ optimism for changing the US and the world for the better. A shift away from traditional fuel sources towards solar power units on the roof of every American home, Nuclear power, harnessing wind power all to make that change to the electric car and away from fossil fuels would be an absolute World-changing commitment to make and more than likely a very popular one to make by Obama and for him to lead the world in a new radical approach.

There’s a scene in the “West Wing” where fictional President Jed Bartlet proclaims that despite a Presidents four year term, there isn’t enough time to everything that they originally set out to achieve when they made the decision to run for office – especially in the first four years. The first year is a learning year and to adjust the strategies that were already in play from the previous administration (a task even more complicated I’d imagine if taking the White House over from the opposing party), and then they have two years to achieve their goals, followed by the last year campaigning and running for re-election.

My point is that you can’t change the world over night and that trying to achieve everything you set out to achieve in a short space of time, especially where agreement and consensus has to be achieved between a large group of people (the American People, Congress, opposing parties, etc), can’t be an easy balance and environment in which to achieve everything – especially with new challenges being presented in amongst trying to achieve these ideas every single day.

Is it up to Government to change the world? I hope so, but it’s also the responsibility of everyone else to change too, there’s no reason why you can’t go and purchase an electric/hybrid car or a solar panels on the roof of their house. Obama can still make radical ideas work, but he needs more than a year to make these things happen – here’s hoping that Calacanis and the rest of the Tech industry does their bit to help change the world in the meantime.

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