I made a mistake in 2016.
As an INTP, I don’t like making mistakes in my analysis, so I try to learn something from them when I screw up. The biggest mistake that I made in supporting Blompf was that I paid too much attention to his rhetoric and positions on the issues and too little to the character of the man.
Quite honestly, I didn’t care about the Access Hollywood tape. I didn’t care about the Russia conspiracy hoax or that he was lying about banging Stormy Daniels. That wasn’t my problem. The only thing that I cared about was whether he could start solving our major national problems.
Blompf told me that he was going to build the wall, get rid of sanctuary cities and was going to be “strong on the border.” He told me that he was going to end the suicide and opioid epidemic in White America. He told me that he was going to rebuild our infrastructure and preserve entitlement programs. He told me that he was opposed to regime change wars and that we would have an “America First” foreign policy and a more positive relationship with Russia. He told me that he was going to renegotiate our awful free-trade agreements that had deindustrialized America. He condemned the media as the “enemy of the people” and ridiculed his opponents like Jeb Bush as puppets of big donors.
At the time, I was dismissive of the “character argument” because it was being made by people like Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and there wasn’t much that I admired about their character. They all repeatedly said he was a con artist. In hindsight, it was absolutely true though that Blompf’s character – his vanity, whoremongering, gambling, scams, etc – gave us a lot of insight about the man and what he would be like as president. It’s just that this message didn’t resonate in the primary because it was being made by conservatives and we were so hell bent on overthrowing those people.
Who is Andrew Yang? Is he anything like Blompf? He likes to say that he is the opposite of Donald Trump:
“I was talking to my wife last night about introverts who are/were politicians. It’s probably not the norm. Having met Barack Obama several times, I believe that he qualifies. After meeting him, my wife said, “For an introvert, he seemed very personable.”
I was a very nerdy, bookish kid. My favorite thing to do was read books. As a kid, I devoured biographies of Native American leaders and fantasy books: Dragonlance, Piers Anthony, Terry Brooks, Anne McCaffrey. I played Dungeons & Dragons with my brother and our neighbors growing up, and later moved on to video games.
I struggled with various social interactions throughout my adolescence, particularly when people started drinking. I went from nerdy kid to somewhat mopey adolescent, listening to the Smiths and the Cure. I was in the high school play and joined the debate team. But I was still the last person that anyone thought would become a politician much less run for President. My high school yearbook photo recently appeared in New York Magazine. I suppose my fashion choices are proof that I’d never intended to run for anything. …
I had a bit of a chip on my shoulder, and started working out and playing basketball in my late-teens. Going to the gym became another way to process things.
I noticed recently that my emails have become a bit similar. They say something like, “Look how much awesome progress we are making! Here are some news clippings and photos! We are going to grow and grow and shock the world!”
All of which is real and sincere. I mean, it’s staggering how far we’ve come. Now that we are cool, I realize just how uncool we were until recently. #YangGang. I appreciate all of the creativity and artwork that people are producing—including the good memes. People being excited enough about this campaign to put their time and energy into it is awesome. Thank you for believing in me. …
As an adult, I remained an introvert, but I found myself developing different capacities. Mainly because I revolted when I found out it was supposed to be my job to process other people’s documentation as a corporate attorney. I was like, “No way this is what I’m going to do for a living. I need to figure something else out.” I was willing to adopt behaviors that were very uncomfortable for me at the time to reach certain goals. Putting myself out there. Selling an idea for a company. Asking women out on dates. (I am now grateful to be married.) Over time, those behaviors became, if not second nature, at least things I could do in service of something I felt strongly about. …
This is, I believe, how an introvert finds himself running for President. You have certain goals. You realize that the only way to make them happen is certain behaviors. You get better at those behaviors. Eventually, you find yourself with a goal so big that it is almost impossible—prepare society for the automation of labor that is already tearing us apart. Keep the country whole. There is a vanishingly short list of ways to meaningfully do so.
I’ve said in various forums that I don’t much care for the actual job of being a politician. It’s true. I think one of the reasons we despair for our future is that politicians traffic in certain behaviors and get rewarded for them. There is little need for deep thought or consideration.
Maybe he is.
If this is the real Andrew Yang, he sounds nothing like Donald Trump. Ironically though, the real Andrew Yang sounds a lot more like Donald Trump’s real base, which is the disaffected populist Right. Aside from being an Asian Democrat with various positions on the issues, the two are actually very similar. In contrast, Blompf the man is nothing like his populist Right base in real life.
Note: This was the first time in his life that Marco Rubio the politician ever said anything honest.