A Very Random Nomination

The Dallas Morning News thinks I might be a good choice for Chief Technology Officer in the Obama administration. This makes me giggle on many levels, and I rather very strongly suspect I will not actually be a finalist. On the other hand, I wouldn’t mind being asked. It would be an excellent excuse to blow a book deadline.

48 Comments on “A Very Random Nomination

  1. I’d much rather have him pick you than Orson Scott Card. Yeesh! I do still enjoy the man’s books but with his politics I want him to stay very far away from having any kind of power.

  2. Seems more likely you’d be appointed secretary of overseeing Bacon Related Internet Phenoms. (BRIP)

    It’s serious business.

  3. Seconding Jdack’s call for making “bacon-related internet phenomena” a Cabinet-level position.

    By the way, I might claim bragging rights for correctly guessing the electoral college results in Monday’s thread on the subject: Obama is currently at 364, with Missouri’s 11 votes still outstanding.

  4. Funny, I’ve been telling friends you ought to be White House press secretary (based on your Prop 8 postings and the recent ‘Reality Check’ post). And you could telecommute, once the White House gets one of CNN’s hologram systems installed.

  5. But who will be the Secretary of the Internets?

    Cory Doctorow. Duh.

  6. How bizarre…

    He obviously equates SF writing ability with actual tech skills…

  7. Good Lord, was he *trying* to find the most assorted group of male SF writers possible? (Actually, no, because then he’d have had to include Will Shetterly with Card.

  8. Please, God, no. I’ve been counting the days until we get to stop talking politics on this blog.

  9. “guys who think big, know how to communicate and are beholden to no one. ”

    Well, that certainly describes you, John I think our government could use a few more intelligent, articulate, and non-pandering people.

    And it will be nice to have an administration that is not at war with science.

  10. The nomination of Card and Pournelle in the same category as you is an interesting contrast. I mean, I see how he got there, but it suggests that he was rating people solely on books and not knowing their politics.

    Card as an advisor to Obama is an amusing (in an absurd way) image, though.

  11. I think science is likely to be safe now. What’s needed is sensible shepherding of other endeavors. How ’bout this —

    ::looks skyward and holds out hands to frame the vision::

    Scalzi for Director of Faith-Based Initiatives.


  12. Don’t get too big a head– you only got on the list because you have a Chicago connection, and Charlie Stross and Cory Doctorow aren’t citizens.

  13. I agree with William Donahue. You should specialize in the hologram technology that CNN recently introduced just for the simple fact that it is cool. You could be like the Emperor in Empire Strikes Back and there could be a gigantic hologram of just your head while Barack Obama kneels down to your might and listens to your every word as you instruct him on the uses of wordpress and various other Scalzi friendly technologies.

  14. I don’t think either Card or Pournelle would take the job. They’re too much the old conservatives (“paleo-conservative,” in Pournelle’s case, in his own words) for a Dem administration.

    I think a guy like Bruce Schneier would probably be better; he’s an articulate writer as well as a technology expert. Or perhaps I’ll see if Jeff Duntemann would like the job.

  15. The only + out of OSC getting the job, is that he would never get around to writing “Speaker for the Dead Horse”

    On the other hand, I can so imagine the Scalzi first day agenda:

    1. tape some pork to a barrel.
    2. upload to overhead projector in a planetarium
    3. tackle defence force staffing and senior citizen housing issue together
    4. fund cinnamon-scented rainbow emissions program

  16. Cabinet meetings with both Doctorow and Scalzi, I would pay to see. In fact, I think a whole PPV Schtick would be in order. I can see the ident now, Cory’s cape fluttering in the breeze, sun glinting heroically from his goggles. John giggling to himself taping bacon to Larry Lessig, head of the FCC.

    Oh I’d pay cash

  17. “I’m in your capitol, taping bacon to your leaders.”?

  18. “Ceiling Cat bless you, and Ceiling Cat bless teh United States of America”

  19. Like you need an excuse to blow a deadline. Plus, I don’t think PNH is going to let you off that easily.

    “No, really, Patrick, Kodi ate it. Really. Have you seen my dog? What’s that about not having a printer here… I can’t hear, you… signal breaking up… going into a tunnel….”

  20. 26. Glenn Hauman – I don’t think citizenship should matter in cabinet posts. They just wouldn’t be in the line of succession. Dr. Henry Kissinger (who was a naturalized citizen, tho born in Bavaria) was Secretary of State, but because he was foreign-born, wasn’t in the line of succession per the 25th amendment.

    Cabinet meetings with Scalzi, Cory Doctorow and Charlie Stross!!! You could make that a pay per view channel and help the national debt!!! Yeah!!!

  21. I don’t see why everyone’s jumping into the bash-Card parade–he’s a social conservative, which I know is a terrible crime, but this position isn’t about social policy.

    But yeah, it’s not like Obama would ask him. And there are better-qualified sf authors, if you want to go down that road.

  22. But if Card was in charge of technology, he might be able to beam socially conservative policy ideas into our heads from space without our knowledge!

  23. I’m reminded of Di Filippo’s “Plumage from Pegasus: Hail to the Hack”, where In an interview the President of the United States explains how, in 2016, SFWA won the Presidency and both houses of Congress. Teh awesome.

  24. MarkHB: Scalzi taping bacon during PPV cabinet meetings? I believe you’ve just come up with a new government income stream.

  25. Christine @39: I’m sure he’d be funding ways to de-gay babies in the womb.

  26. No blowing book deadlines! we want books, we want books


  27. I like the idea. And since Pournelle’s name was mentioned, too, it’s only fair to acknowledge his and Niven’s portrayal of SF authors (i.e., the “dreamer fithp”) as “big idea” advisers to the President in Footfall.

  28. Wouldn’t that mean you’d have to start posting regular vlogs as lonelypol27?

  29. Well John has certainly shown he can communicate and has on scientific topics.

    But beyond that, the article had a good point. A corporate executive advising on a topic that affects his former company (and likely much of his stock holdings) does create issues. I’d prefer a more academic expert.