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ME 2020


I'm in! I am running for President of the United States. The ultimate outsider. My qualifications:

I have a Political Science background and would be more than happy to share some of my (typed on a typewriter) term papers, especially those from Professor Wolfenstein's (RIP) demanding graduate courses. Aced 'em. In fact, if you ignored my lackluster grades in Design (looms = hard. Potter's Wheel = hard.), I think all of you would be impressed with my grades. I even beat an English Major at his own game (a story I'm saving for a stump speech).

I was in the Navy. See?

Okay that's not true. But there's precedent for that sort of fibbing nowadays. I don't think it should impact your support.

I make video games. White. Male. Vote.

By 2020, I promise to have Lines published. A published book is a prerequisite for candidacy. It's about politics, baseball, rock n roll, and love. It's mostly fiction and I wrote it myself. Actually, my wife kinda came up with the right solution for the ending. She tied everything together nicely. Three other people kindly read brutally awful first drafts. Nothing is written alone. I take criticism and advice well.

Psst: If you're a publisher, Lines is yours. I'll help get it printed and sold. If it makes money, give it to 826 Valencia. One of the most inspirational elements of Doonesbury is the charitable generosity of its Soldier Stories series (and I'm not just saying that because I'm running for president and lied about being a vet about eight sentences ago).

My first order of business will be overhauling the tax system.

1) I'll replace almost everyone's individual income tax with a Carbon Tax. This is not my idea. In fact, it's most vocal supporter is Republican Bob Inglis. He proposed a complete replacement of the income tax (yes, there's enough money in the carbon production industry). I'm hesitant to completely obliterate the income tax. I mean, eventually the carbon tax will disappear. That's the point... to encourage the switch to sustainable energy production. If I removed income tax completely, it'd be real tough to reinstate. Really. Tough. So let's say everyone below an income of $250,00/year pays $100 dollars. Everyone above, plays 5-20%. Nothing above 20%, I promise. It's almost flat.

2) Corporate taxes! Any company (with 50 or more employees) that can get to zero waste and/or produce a sufficient amount of energy to power its business, gets a 10-year free pass from paying any corporate payroll tax. Sustainable and charitable behavior also cuts a company's payroll tax. Government gets smaller when companies behave. Take a break EPA, industry's got this.

3) For capital gains, I'm going to steal an item from Hillary Clinton's plan. If you hold a stock more than six years, your capital gains tax is just 15% (down from near 40% at year one). I have worked for a couple companies that pitted big ideas vs. impatient investors. This rewards a little patience. Quality takes time.

Running mate: Steve Nash. Point Guards would make great presidents. Also, he skateboards and plays soccer and directs his own advertising. Unfortunately, he's Canadian. So... Theo Epstein (Red Sox '04, Cubs '16). If he's not available, Steve Kerr or Gregg Popovich. Motion offenses are beautiful and courageous creations. I've been coaching baseball and basketball for many years now. It's ridiculously stressful. Do I call a time-out? Do I send the kid from third base? My running mate is going to be sporty.

This post is a purposely incomplete agenda. I plan on crowd-sourcing the rest. Everyone gets an opportunity to shape the platform. I'll supply the app. You supply the content. Send ideas. Vote on solutions. I want to know what you're thinking, including the angry rustbelt gentleman. I want to gauge everyone's enthusiasm. I'm listening.

I'm serious... unless Clooney womans-up and runs in 2020. If that's the case, the presidency is yours, George.

Sound Accompaniment (Campaign Song): Mekons, Robin Hood (yes, the chorus is "take from the rich and give to the poor." I won't do this as president. But I think my policies will encourage individuals and companies to practice empathy. Heck, the backbone of my tax policy is financial incentives for good behavior. My first 100 days goal: reaffirm empathy as a core human value. There's no reason dolphins, dogs, and primates should behave better than Americans.).


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