Even since the idea of Silicon Valley congealed in the popular consciousness, libertarians (and Libertarians) have fantasized about tapping into the nation's rich geek playground as ideal recruiting and fundraising turf. But with a few notable exceptions, that strategy hasn't really panned out. But now Fast Company magazine has arrived at the same conclusion from the rich geek's perspective:
If Libertarians want to have a real impact in 2010 or 2012, they need to recruit from the business world, where their values will resonate most. Places like Silicon Valley, Austin, and Seattle. You don't have to look far to find high-profile CEO types who are likely Libertarians hiding out in the major parties. Starbucks's Howard Schultz has broken with Democratic tradition (and his political donation record) and fought unionization. Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman, a Republican candidate for governor of California, strays from her party on social issues. Same goes for Cisco CEO and Republican fund-raiser John Chambers. These leaders could help build a financial base for the party, a complement to its significant grassroots online fund-raising operation that Ron Paul created in 2008 (only Obama and Hillary raised more).
Author Carlos Watson offers an an electoral strategy based on a peculiar comparison with the TV show 30 Rock:
Candidates would need to be a visible and sharp departure from the party's current wing-nut-and-professor rep—young folks with pedigrees in clean tech and biotech, not politics, and solid ideas of how to get us out of the economic crisis. The party would then cast a larger shadow than justified by its numbers—kind of like 30 Rock three years ago, a show that slowly evolved from critical darling to broader phenomenon.
Counterproposal: Maybe the Libertarian Party should just skip the middlemen and offer fictional CEO Jack Donaghy the nomination.
Via Michael Sciortino.