When XKCD first became popular, some of my friends said they thought it was me writing the comics. Hell, I agreed with them. I remember thinking to myself, “Wow, this guy is pulling thoughts out of my mind!”.* Apparently, I wasn’t the only person who felt this way, and it’s for this reason that the stick-figure comic has become immensely popular. I, personally, love the comic. It’s even inspired me to write/draw a few comics of my own, which I’ll probably post whenever class and work isn’t driving me nuts.
However, it appears that XKCD artist Randall Munroe and I finally have something on which to disagree.
Today, on his blag at xkcd.com, Randall Munroe endorsed Barack Obama.
His endorsement statement seemed to be largely in favor of the Illinois senator’s stance on open government:
Obama has shown a real commitment to open government. When putting together tech policy (to take an example close to home for xkcd) others might have gone to industry lobbyists. Obama went to Lawrence Lessig, founder of Creative Commons (under which xkcd is published) and longtime white knight in the struggle with a broken system over internet and copyright policy. Lessig was impressed by Obama’s commitment to open systems — for example, his support of machine-readable government information standards that allow citizens’ groups to monitor what our government is up to. Right now, the only group that can effectively police the government is the government itself, and as a result, it’s corrupt to the core. Through these excellent and long-overdue measures, Obama is working to fight this corruption.
This is a good thing: Obama’s support of open government is well-received.
I will concede that, of the remaining Democratic candidates, Obama is my favorite. Kucinich held that title until he dropped out last Friday.
However, parties matter very little to me. I became a Republican in order to vote for Ron Paul, and even wrote a HOWTO for Pennsylvanians who want to switch parties, as well.
I ask this, then, of Randall Munroe: Why not Ron Paul?
I don’t expect Randall to answer me personally, but I’d expect that before a public answer on his blag. I think I fail to understand his position based on such a short statement. If that issue is of utmost importance to Randall, then I can understand his endorsement—Ron Paul, as far as I know, isn’t as strong in this area, but Paul does wish for something which I feel is much better: an overall smaller government with less need to be secretive.