I Vote For Technology

Gizmodo is not endorsing a presidential candidate. Nearly everyone on staff agreed that it would be a bad idea, for a lot of valid reasons. Besides the fact that Gizmodo is seen by many as a means of escape from the the real world, we simply don't cover politics. Many on our staff felt that, even if we weighed our selection using just the candidates' statements on technology, we'd just be trivialising the truly pressing issues—the economy, the wars, national security, America's cultural divide and our standing in the international community, to toss out a handful. But I think you guys should know where at least one of us is coming from: Technology is political, because it's tightly intertwined with every major issue. If you don't grasp technology, you no longer understand the world. I'm voting for the guy who gets that.

I'm not suggesting you have to use Twitter—or know what Twitter is—to make sound judgments as a leader of the free world. It's not about being pro-net neutrality, either. These things are trivial. It's the long view—can someone who doesn't know how to read a newspaper online by himself truly comprehend just how connected the world is? (How can someone who can't read newspapers online function at all when they cease to be printed on paper?)

How can the techno-illiterate appreciate that technology is both the cause and the cure for our bruised economy, from the globally connected financial crises at hand to America's potential economic revitalisation through a charge into green energy systems that spur innovation, create jobs and help to shatter our dependence on oil? Temporarily cheaper gas is not a means to economics growth—and we will run out in our lifetime. US entrepreneurship is driven by technology and innovation, and it's key to maintaining our superpower status. A green energy—i.e., technology—economy would reboot all of that.

Technology constantly redefines the way we wage war, but it also aims to assuage the global food crisis. It will heal sick people who couldn't be cured before. Hell, it's what will make flights finally arrive on time. The person at the wheel should know how to use a GPS—and Google, online newspapers, maybe even a smartphone.

That's a small list, but there's a big point. No, I'm not naïve enough to think this will change anyone's mind—in fact I hope your decision is not made so lightly that it possibly could. But I wanted to be clear: The future of this country, on many fronts, is tightly tied up with technology and what we do with it. I don't think it will ever again be possible to vote for someone who doesn't understand that. So why do it now?

[Left Image: Giz Photoshop Contest; Centre Image: Thirty30 Photography; Right Image: Gary He]

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