New Obama scam: visitors vote for questions he'll be asked
Barack Obama has recently launched a new effort that lets visitors to change dot gov submit questions he should be asked. Others then vote those questions up or down, and he'll presumably answer the top rated questions at some point in time: change.gov/page/content/openforquestions
This is, in a word, a scam: it shares the same huge design flaw as other popular voting systems in which weak questions are pushed to the top while the questions he should be asked are ignored. In fact, he has experience with such a scheme, where a weak question from the 10Questions group was asked of him after MoveOn asked its members to propel it to the top of the list.
For instance, MoveOn has three million or so members. If a discomforting question looks like it is rising to the top, all they'd have to do is tell their members to go vote up a weak, setup question and the "problem" would be solved.
And, the current top question is incredibly weak:
What will you do to establish transparency and safeguards against waste with the rest of the Wall Street bailout money?
That's akin to asking, "Comrade Lenin, what will you do to ensure that the Five Year Plan is carried out?" Obama won't have any problems with that question, and they probably have boilerplate in one of his past statements answering the very question.
NOT-VERY-SURPRISING UPDATE: "Blagojevich questions censored on Transition site" (link) has a screengrab of three questions involving Blago that were marked as "inappropriate" and removed from the list of possibilities. Who could have predicted that something like that would happen? Oh, yeah, I did.