Showing posts from August, 2007

The Rip Van Winkle Method Of Candidate Selection

Washington Irving imagined a Rip Van Winkle who fell asleep under a tree only to wake up twenty year later. Imagine for a moment that you fall asleep tonight and wake up on the morning after next year’s presidential election, November 5, 2008. Now, honestly, try and imagine how happy you would be if you picked up the morning paper on that day and read “[blank] WINS ELECTION”. Substitute the current candidates for [blank] and rank your level of happiness to the news. Be sure to NOT base your decision on what you think is the probability of that person winning, or on who you are currently supporting, but on how happy or unhappy you would be after being asleep from now until after the election and awake to the news.

I took the test on myself and here are my results (on a +10, most happy, to a -10, most unhappy scale). And I was surprised at how this point of view helped me adjust my choice of whom I should really support. It is a bit like the concept of following your bliss.

+9 Bara…