It’s voting day and for the first time in the history of this country, we may see a robot candidate get elected. This is a huge leap for us as a culture.
If C443-H wins the popular vote, we will be in the hands of a logical, sophisticated machine built to maximize the efficiency of the country and its citizens, a complaint many have about the inadequacies of the human leadership of the last 300 years.
This isn’t the first time a robot has been close to winning the presidency. The first to run was HAL2, the construction bot turned local politician that’d managed to drop Kansas City’s crime rate by nearly 24 percent in its first year in office. While it was popular in a number of polls, HAL2 was only able to pick up three percent of the vote in the presidential election, which led many to say no machine would be elected any time soon.
That was almost proven wrong by #44C, a forklift bot that gained sentience over the holidays of ‘33, and won the ears of midwestern voters with its populist message and call to return manufacturing jobs to humans. #44C picked up a shocking 43 percent of the vote, losing to Archibald Wincinerfield, the solar magnate from West Texas.
Finally, we had C443-H’s last historic run, where it lost to Wincerfield by a mere 34,002 votes, handing Wincerfield his seventh term in the presidency.
Yet here we are again, with a second matchup between Wincerfield and C443-H. Polls suggest a 50:50 chance of either being our next president.
Personally, I’m of two minds on this vote. I hesitate to vote for C443-H because I find its policy on early childhood education (let the robots take of it) a bit troubling. Also, its plans to eliminate almost 100,000 different jobs currently held by humans has grave implications on the economy moving forward. That said, it does promise reparations for the humans put out of work, but the systemic change seems unsustainable in the long term.
I also, and I’ll just speak frankly here, I find C443-H a bit annoying. Its vocal processing unit has the type of high pitched shrill that’s hard to ignore, and I find its mouth suspension operator unnerving to look at for too long. I realize how this make me sound, but look, I’m told I need to be more honest here on my blog if I’m going to be honest with myself, and that might as well start with this election.
All that said, there’s no denying that Wincerfield is anything but a complete dunce. He’s a terrible human, incapable of showing the correct emotion at the correct time, and the type of incapable stereotype usually meant as a lesson in young adult fiction. Wincerfield is, at his core, capable of very little, but unproblematic to most, which is why he’s been our president for 28 years. A vote for the status quo has been a defining facet of our election process.
I know I should get over it and just vote for C443-H. It has a real chance of being the first of our kind and I do think it’ll do a better job than Wincerfield, but I’m worried about how it looks outside of this country. What will everyone else think about us? Will they be willing to interact with C443-H? Will trade deals stall because they don’t want to work with a robot? Or will they flourish because it will only present the most logical ideas to congress? Will it give us, the robots of the United States, the recognition we’ve always wanted? Or will the humans think we’re trying to take control of them, like the old stories they used to tell?
I think, in the end, I must vote for the status quo. I have to, right? I must.