May 27, 2024

What Do You Want in a President?


If you were to ask anyone what they want in a President—not just the candidates that we have today, but in general—and you’re likely to get answers that match the qualities of the current candidates.  But if you could press further into their thinking, and start to analyze qualities, I bet you’d find this to be true:

I want a candidate that would respond to situations like I would respond to them.

Because, when it boils down to it, I believe that we actually look for people that think and act like us.  Which is why when someone connects with us, and we find them likable, we don’t have a problem seeing them in a position of power, but when we find someone that we dislike or disagree with we cannot see them leading us.

Knowing Our Strengths/Weaknesses

I believe that most of us are pretty aware of what we know and what we don’t know.  For instance:

  • Few of us have ever met a foreign leader.
  • Most of us have never been a boss.
  • Many of us do not have a grasp of complex economic concepts.
  • Few of us can run a business meeting, let alone understand Roberts Rules of Order.

The list continues on, but there are many qualities and experiences that we lack.  And we look for our leaders to have those qualities.  We want our leaders to know how to behave on the world stage, and to understand those things that we don’t grasp.

But in the end, we want them to agree with us.  We want them to have our principles, to have our ideals, and once they have the data, to make a decision that is consistent with those principles.

Character Counts

This is why character counts.  This is why the discussion of track record is so important.  This is why I don’t think a legislator makes the best candidate for the executive branch.

You see, a legislator is rarely a leader—most of the time he’s a compromiser.  He’s someone who seeks middle ground, and he often has to compromise in order to get things done.  This means that there will be votes that he wishes he didn’t make that can be twisted to say anything apart from core principles.

Character counts because we want to know that what a person says he believes is what he truly believes—because when the data’s all in we want them to make a decision based on principle, not on prudence.  We want him to take the hard road when he has to, to make the tough call and weather the storm that follows.  We want him to take responsibility and even if it’s unpopular, make the call consistent with principle.

Why?  Because inside, we believe we’d do the same thing.

Anyone Can Truly Be President

It’s not just a cute thing to say, but it’s also not easy.  It requires discipline of character1.  It takes a lot of work, and a consistent life.

Anyone can become President.  Few will, but that should not stop us from living lives that would be worthy.

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  1. Who you are when no one can see. []

3 thoughts on “What Do You Want in a President?

  1. Things I look for:

    1 – I want a president who strictly interprets the Constitution.

    2 – I want a president who recognizes where the Constitution is not being upheld and is willing to act to restore it.

    3 – I want a president who does not take contributions from special interest groups.

    4 – I want a president who understands economics and who will take real measures to protect the economic liberties of Americans and that necessarily means restoring hard currency and disbanding the Fed and the IRS.

    5 – I want a president who understands civil liberties and who will take real measures to protect them, and that means repealing all laws that infringe upon the rights as enumerated in the Bill of Rights.

    And I won’t vote for anyone less, because to vote for anything less is to vote against freedom and liberty and to put to shame the founders of our great nation.

    Do I want a president who will react to situations the way I would react? ABSOLUTELY NOT! I’ve seen the way I react to situations, and I would not vote for my present or former self!

    But I do want a President who stands for the things I believe in. However, notice this: a true leader will foster self-education in politics and economics beyond the level of his or her constituents, a true leader will stand on Truth, that unchanging, unfaltering and solid virtue, and that virtue will be recognized for it’s inherent value. That is how a leader leads… not by slogans, catch-phrases, muckraking and mudslinging.

    Your article here illustrates exactly the problem in american politics today: People aren’t looking for leaders who have rational, sound, logical justifications for their political platforms, they are looking for leaders who have “qualities” intangible, malleable, abstract, even ethereal, “qualities”.

    You know what? You can look for those “qualities” and always miss them, because the one who has real quality stands on sound reasoning, but America has ignored those candidates out of selfishness, foolishness, arrogance, ignorance and even naivete.

    Arthur Eisss last blog post..Confiscation Through Inflation

  2. @Arthur Eiss: You certainly have good goals, and I appreciate your decision to stand on them. However, it’s certainly possible that your goals would eliminate everyone– not even Ron Paul is perfect.

    I’m not sure that there’s that much of a difference between “wanting a President that would react to situations the way I would react” and “wanting a President who stands for the things I believe in,” since, in truth, if a person agrees with your beliefs, he will act as you would act. The proof is in the pudding. And by react I didn’t mean emotionally, I meant mentally.

    You want a leader that follows your worldview, shares your values, and have decided that only that leader is fit in your mind– and you’re welcome to it. It’s exactly my point.

  3. Well I think the reaction of the politician is his or her action… not necessarily their thoughts or emotions.

    The interesting thing about a good leader is that he/she is capable of making better decisions than myself. And yet their justification for those decisions doesn’t irk me or fall below the standards of usual objective reasoning and logic… in fact, the stated justification, because it stands on Truth and objective reasoning and logic, serves to EDUCATE me! Imagine that… So would a leader who agrees with my ideals act as I would act? No. If a politician can only equal my performance, then perhaps it is I who should be running right? My chosen leaders are people who I can get behind and follow with a sincere heart.

    Before I started reading and listening to Ron Paul I didn’t even know a leader could do that! Is he perfect? No, and I don’t expect him to be. Notice I gave 5 points that I said I wouldn’t compromise on… everything after that doesn’t fall under the uncompromising bit.

    I disagree with your assertion that my standards eliminate all possible candidates. Afterall, it was a candidate who taught me those standards in the first place. However, if the goal of following the constitution eliminates all possible candidates then I think it’s fair to say we live under tyranny.

    Before I discovered Ron Paul I had forsaken all politics, believing them to be futile. I didn’t even know it was possible for a politician to stand for real sound logical Truth.

    Ron Paul has dropped from the race and is no longer a candidate. However I’m not about to submit to the ‘lesser of two evils’ philosophy. If you had the candidates were Fidel Castro and Adolf Hitler… would you really vote for one of them knowing that either of them would strip you of your freedoms?

    Well, I’m not necessarily comparing our candidates to those two, but I do believe that their political platforms will only serve to further debase the constitution and the liberties of the people. So I can’t vote for either of them.

    Arthur Eisss last blog post..Confiscation Through Inflation

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