Tech 4 President?

Cornfields in the rearview mirror.  Time to park the personalities – and focus on the key issues.

Innovation ignites America’s economy. Let’s face it, China’s not trying to steal our Constitution.  Europe doesn’t covet our right to bear arms.  Isn’t Putin trying to make Russia great again?

Think Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Google, Intel, Microsoft, and Oracle.  These tech titans define this nation’s competitive advantage.  Tech provides the juice that powers our economy, which feeds our tax base, which pays for healthcare and muscles up our military.  It’s that excitement that makes people want to come to live here.

But, if tech increases the divide between the haves and have nots – distancing the one percent – those displaced citizens will attack progress at the ballot box.  What will taxi drivers do when cars drive themselves?  Consider the top 62 folks in the world own as much wealth as the poorest half of the global population.  If tech continues to amplify the divide, we have big problems.

And, tech has utopian and dystopian personalities.  Without regulation, industry will run amok.  But, with too much government control, it’s 1984. Balance is everything.

What have we heard from the candidates on tech policy?  Crickets …

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So, if the candidates don’t seem to have a tech agenda – how about we give them one?  That’s exactly why a group of former Federal CIOs, IT execs, and some of my MeriTalk colleagues have spent the last year hard at work.  Known as the Tech Iconoclasts, this group and its policy platform aim to shake things up.  No 25-points to fix government IT.  And, it’s much more ambitious than government IT – the Iconoclasts provide five big tech policy recommendations for America.

If you want to know more, join the Tech Iconoclasts for breakfast at the National Press Club in D.C. on February 11th for the launch.  Register for the breakfast here.

As you drive to New Hampshire, Cruz, Trump, Hillary, and Bernie – we’re talking to you.

Steve O'Keeffe
About Steve O'Keeffe
The most connected executive in the government technology community – O'Keeffe is an accomplished entrepreneur and tech-policy expert, with 30 years’ experience as an innovator at the crossroads of government and industry. He founded MeriTalk, O'Keeffe & Company, 300Brand, among other entities. O'Keeffe is a fixture on the Hill, in both the House and Senate, testifying on IT, budget, government workforce, and the requirement to modernize government IT to enhance outcomes for the American people and government employees. He is a champion for change, simplification, transparency, and clear communication of IT value without jargon. A committed philanthropist, O'Keeffe has served for 15 years on the USO-Metro Board of Directors – Vice Chairman of the Board and Chair of the Annual Awards Dinner. He started his career as a journalist – O'Keeffe has contributed to The Economist, Government Executive, Signal Magazine, The Washington Post, and, of course, MeriTalk.