What I've worried about over the holidays? The 2008 Presidential Race

We had an exciting holiday season at Spreadshirt. We hit records and had INCREDIBLE performance across our teams — marketing, production, customer service, and IT that keeps it all humming. Why can’t we have Christmas every few months? It is a real adrenaline rush! But, to the point of this post…

After the Christmas shopping days, we all got a chance to take a breath, and what did I do? I worried. I am not a political activist by any stretch, but I am a voter, and I take it fairly seriously. I felt uninformed, so I spent time reading about the candidates to check what I thought I knew and learn more.

Where did I end up? I don’t feel that I have a candidate for whom I can vote at this point. I’m concerned about our economy, not a steep decline, but a slow, anguished one that keeps us comfy until we hit the rocks. More people are swinging this way too, according to USA Today’s early December poll on important issues for the Presidential race. The war in Iraq was down 14% as an issue and the economy up 23%.

I know I’m more keenly focused on this, but have any of the candidates noticed the state of the US dollar in the world’s economy? The US dollar is at its lowest point in over 10 years compared to the Euro and Canadian dollar. [Note: I want all of these markets to remain strong!] My favorite “commentary” on this status is that US rap star Jay-Z flashes Euros in his latest video, rather than dollars.

I don’t see that any of the candidates get that the economy is the key issue — the war has a different light with a strong economy. Focusing on one issue is hard… remember Carville had to post a note to remind the (original) Clinton campaign about this: “It is the economy, stupid.” From my perspective, it is STILL the economy, stupid.

So on my wish list? To see the candidates answers to the question in the “Lessons in Leadership: The Three-Minute Manager” article from Fortune’s 12/24 edition. (Annoyingly enough, I cannot find a link to this online, but it was a good issue as a whole! My favorite article: 101 Dumbest Moments in Business.) The question posed to three management gurus was “What do you do if you discover a huge loss at your company?” Of course, for the candidates I would change this to “huge loss within your country”. The responses were broken into four categories:

  1. Assess. What is your first move?
  2. Fix. How do you clean up the mess?
  3. Take responsibility. Don’t pass the buck.
  4. Study others. Who’s done it right, and who hasn’t?

I’d like to see the candidates answer as succinctly and clearly as these gurus. Anyone have any pull at any of the campaign HQs?

Don’t worry, this won’t turn into a political blog this season. As I said, I’m not an activist, just thought I’d share what I did over the holidays.

What is on my shirt today? Well, it is a gift I gave for the holiday season:

Whine less
    Wine more

Done in Greg’s hand (1st line) and Santa’s Sleigh (2nd line) fonts, and Burgundy (a.k.a., maroon) flex on a white shirt.