Monday, February 4, 2013
How I Will Campaign for CSM
By now, you've probably heard that I am running for CSM. You all know me. Many of you are inclined to vote for me without any hesitation, no questions asked. I thank you for that trust. On the other hand, a small number of you may yet harbor biases against my candidacy, due to mistaken notions about what I plan to bring to EVE. But I don't want you to vote based on your preconceptions, positive or negative. Over the course of the following days and weeks, I will present to you my vision of CSM 8. Today, I begin the campaign by telling you how I will campaign.
Most of the CSM candidates will tell you about what they consider their accomplishments in EVE, or they'll describe their affiliations: "I'm the lowsec candidate", "I'm the wormhole candidate", "I'm the carebear candidate", "I'm your alliance candidate". As for what they actually stand for, it will remain something of a mystery. Maybe because they haven't given it much thought, or because they want to avoid alienating voters.
I promise you that you will get none of that from me. I will tell you exactly what I stand for, and I'll describe precisely what I intend to do if I'm elected to the CSM. I won't conceal my positions on the issues, I won't play to the middle, and I won't pander. As I see it, my job in this campaign is not to trick the maximum number of voters into thinking that I agree with them. Rather, my job is to tell you where I stand on the issues and, if possible, to persuade you that I'm right.
By the end of this campaign, you and I may not agree on everything. Odds are, we'll agree on some things but not others. The truth is, unless you're a candidate for CSM yourself, you're not going to find anyone running who agrees with you 100% on all the issues. They'll have you believe they do, though. It's a time-honoured tradition in politics for a candidate to present himself as a blank canvas upon which all the voters can project their own expectations. According to conventional political wisdom, a candidate should be as vague as the voters will let him get away with.
Beware the candidate who tells you about how much experience he has in this game, or how much he knows about it. Beware the candidate who tells you how hard he'll work, or how well he gets along with others, or that he's still forming his opinions on the issues, or that he can believe two contradictory things at the same time. Those are the candidates who are telling you everything in the world except what they'll actually do if you send them to the CSM.
The problem with the blank slate candidate is that you never really know what you're voting for. Even when they do offer you a few bullet points here or there about what they supposedly believe, you can't trust it. If a candidate is willing to manipulate voters by hiding his views, he'll be just as willing to manipulate the voters by misrepresenting his views.
If it sounds like I have a dim view of politics as usual, it's because I do. Look at where it's gotten us so far. Voting for CSM has been a crapshoot; you never know what you're getting. You vote for a candidate and then they disappear after they're elected. You vote for someone with PvP credentials who turns out to be in favor of eliminating non-consensual wardecs. Nobody ever runs for the CSM saying they'll be a spoon-thrower or a doormat or apologist for the carebears. But that's the risk you run when you vote for someone because he hasn't said anything you disagree with--yet.
I'm not a mystery candidate, just an honest one. Brutally honest at times, yes, but honest. You may not like everything I stand for, but at least you'll know what you're getting. And when you do hear me say something you like, you'll know that I really believe in it and will fight for it.
In subsequent posts, I will describe, as fully as possible, my agenda for CSM 8. If you show me the respect of devoting your time to reading it, then I'll show you the respect of giving you the truth and nothing more or less.