America is now just a few days away from electing its 45th President. To say that this election has been ‘quite a rollercoaster’ is both an understatement and a possible insult to inertia, force, speed, gravity and the entire coaster-industrial-complex. Throughout all of the fervor and furor, and despite the many disagreements brought to light in our Facebook feeds during this election cycle, one particularly popular opinion is that “neither candidate is ideal, but these are the only options we have.”
To that, we say “What if?”
What if we had another option? What if we had a candidate without any of the typical east coast, Washington ties? What if one of the nominees was programmed from birth with the kind of temperament and intellect necessary to calmly and rationally answer virtually any question asked? What if we could vote for someone whom the American people trusted more than most traditional institutions?
What if Google ran for President?
We know that Google is widely trusted, an advantage that none of the current candidates in this race can claim to have. In fact, according to the 2016 Edelman Trust Barometer, over 60% of people surveyed said they trust Google for news more than they trust most news outlets in the traditional, main (or lame, depending on your outlook) stream media. In fact, more people are likely to believe a news story if they learn of it from Google’s search results than if they were to find it from the original source. In this campaign of dirty politics and deleted emails, wouldn’t it be nice to have a candidate we could actually believe when they tell us they’re going to get things done?
A leader we can trust is presumably also a leader we can believe will act with our best interests in mind when it comes to foreign policy. To do that, they need to have cordial, mutually beneficial relationships with leaders from around the world. We’re not suggesting they have to cozy up to dictators and despots, but having a solid reputation that stretches beyond borders and across oceans is always a good look, especially in today’s tightly connected global economy. Good news, Google’s got that covered too! In 2015, it was named the second-most reputable company in the world by Forbes.
A strong understanding of the world and a sterling international reputation means we’d be saved the embarrassment of a full-on Presidential “What is Aleppo?” moment. Google reads and archives everything that gets published online, so it knows anything anyone is saying on any given topic. We can rest assured that when pressed on issues or asked to cooperate with foreign leaders, President Google would leverage its vast knowledge and established relationships to find a diplomatic solution.
From private email servers to WikiLeaks to sneaky Russians, the theme of privacy and security, particularly on the internet, has loomed large over this election and the actual candidates from whom we have to choose. Google has a strong and storied history of fighting for online privacy rights. More importantly, it’s exhibited a deep understanding of the issue throughout the years and an eagerness to hold its ground when challenged on privacy issues both at home or abroad.
Assuming the Earth hasn’t been completely microwaved by the sun by the time Google runs for the highest office in the land, we can take solace in knowing that our candidate supports the environment. Google has put its money where its mouth is, having already spent billions on its own clean energy efforts. On top of that, along with some of its most powerful friends, Google once pledged $140 billion to reduce carbon emissions.
PERSONALITY AND TEMPERAMENT
Still, even as it keeps its eye toward the clean, sleek, and stylish future, it’s not above the occasional “dad jean” moment. And that’s fine! We don’t need our president to be the coolest person in the room, we just want them to be presidential. All we want is to feel comfortable with our choices. And when you really break it all down, what’s more comfortable than trusty, baggy denim? Don’t answer that.
Look, obviously corporate relationships with democracy are in a tenuous state today, at best— Citizen’s United, anyone? But with that said, there is a certain amount of predictability we get from corporations and brands that make it easy to imagine how they’d behave in a given context. And with term limits, maybe it’s not such an absurd idea after all? Why can’t one entity perform a singularly defined function, human or other? Centaurs (Human and AI hybrids) are winning at chess, why not win at democracy? If you’re not opposed to that, maybe we’ll all be hearing “Google 2020!”