Diary

Need help deciding who to vote for in 2016? Imperfect America's Election Decision Engine

I for one am dismayed beyond imagination about the political situation the United States finds itself in today. We may be seeing the worst pair of candidates to grace the top of the main party tickets in the history of the country. Both are morally corrupt. Both are arrogant, self centered and greedy. Both are incompetent when it comes to foreign affairs.

We can’t really blame the Democrats’ fault for nominating Hillary Clinton. Modern Democrats are hybrid socialists / Communists / fascists by nature and they simply want more of what they’ve gotten for eight years with their strongman, Barack Obama. To expect them to want something else is simply foolish. It’s really the Republicans who have caused this angst as they wasted the opportunity to make this an historic election in terms of salvaging the country. But alas, they failed to do so because they were (willingly) led astray by Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, two men who have spent decades lying to the American people as they posed as conservatives. Their embrace of Donald Trump belies their base opportunism, but it’s the country that will pay the price for their guile as they sit back and laugh. Good riddance to the careers of both.

Of course blowing off steam about the current mess doesn’t really help decide what is the best, or more accurately, the less bad decision to make in November. As such, I’ve created a decision engine to help make that decision.

The reality is, none of us will ever likely encounter a candidate we agree with 100% of the time. As such, the choice always comes down to; “Of the candidates on the ballot – among those with an actual opportunity to win – who do you agree with most?” Of course most doesn’t mean always, or even 50% of the time… but rather, of the two candidates, who do you agree with more. Agreeing with a candidate only 25% doesn’t seem like a strong reason to vote for them, until you realize that you agree with their opponent only 2% of the time.

Below is a screenshot of the decision engine intended to allow you to evaluate the two candidates on 10 different issues. You can click here for an online version or click here to download an Excel version.

The decision engine gives you the opportunity to weigh the importance of 10 different issues from 1-5. (There’s a dropdown arrow to the right of each cell) You can change the issues based on what is important to you.  The order does not matter for the scores or the recommendation, only the weighting and which candidate you choose.  As for the weighting, you could keep all issues at the same number, meaning you value each equally, or you could adjust any or all to reflect your level of importance, with the most important rated 5 and the least important at 1.

Then you choose which candidate is closest to your views on each issue.  Again, a dropdown arrow is to the right of each cell… and Neither is also an option. If you select Trump for any given issue, you probably will want to remember that while you might agree with him today, you have no idea what his policies will be next week never-mind next year.  With Clinton there’s no such concern as her views don’t change, they’re consistently red and usually wrong.

The engine will multiply your choice of candidate by the weighting of each issue and then give a total score for each candidate. Once you have made your choices for all of the issues the engine will recommend the candidate you should vote for based on your choices. In actuality the engine tells you throughout the entire process, giving you the recommendation based on the choices made thus far, but it is the final score that you should consider as your recommendation. When all is said and done, if the candidates are tied, the engine simply suggests you write in your own name…

At the end of the day, there will likely be many people writing in their own name or that of Mickey Mouse. Frankly were Mickey on the ballot this year I might actually be inclined to vote for him…

I hope this helps clarify what to do in this horrible, sad, frustrating situation…