August 14, 2011

Voters have a right to know a lot more than they do about the qualifications of political leaders making decisions on economic policy.  A wide spectrum of visions exists about how best to achieve an improving standard of living without documentation of how different candidates came to hold such views.  Far less rigor is demanded of politicians to demonstrate the basis of their opinions and self-proclaimed expertise than for other professions like doctors, accountants, or electricians. 

Wouldn’t it be nice to know what courses in economics President Obama took, the grades he received, whose teachings have influenced him, and why?  These ought to attract more interest than his place of birth.  It would be even more appropriate to learn such information for all challengers claiming that they will do a better job as president if given voter support.  Is it too much to ask of all candidates before election day to divulge the identity of people they might select as top economic policy advisors and the credentials of those possible choices?  Why are the SAT scores of candidates so widely concealed, and does that concealment not undermine the message that a top-class education system will be critically important to the future?  To be adequately informed in a democracy, voters ought to be given the information to determine if a candidate has reached the final four in politics because of what they learned in school and the proficiencies they demonstrated against fellow students at that stage of their lives or in spite of any real distinction as a scholar.

Copyright 2011, Larry Greenberg.  All rights reserved.  No secondary distribution without express permission.


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