As we hit the stretch run of another great American Presidential election race, the din of the displeased has once again made themselves heard. As usual, there are a significant population of the electorate who see this year's vote as a false choice, and would just rather select "neither of the above" in one of various ways.
Such as it is we in Sounders Nation are presented with a false choice of our own, as the much ballyhooed marketing scheme of our quadrennial General Manager vote draws near.
Aside from the fact that the entire idea strikes me as egregiously incomplete (I'll get into that in a bit) what really strikes me is that this is little more than a scheduled recall election; one in which only demonstrable incompetence would see the GM thrown out. Adrian Hanauer is of course perfectly competent.
To most logical people the idea of voting out Hanauer at this point is asinine - unless someone has a pretty big bone to pick with the man. Of course, it's a logical fallacy to assume that means Hanauer is the only man for the job, or even the best man for the job.
I am left to wonder if voting for Hanauer is the equivalent of giving the man a "get out of jail free" card for the next four years. Of course, any competent sports team ownership/executive group would assess their GM on an annual basis -- if not even more often than that -- but what happens if after next season the collective wisdom has shifted, that Hanauer has had his run and it might be time to find someone else?
Indeed, the biggest reason voting out Hanauer is foolish at this point is that there is no guarantee we will get someone better, or even as good. In fact, there stands a very real chance that his replacement may well turn out to be incompetent; and does this leave us with a four-year reign of bad-GM terror?
Beyond that, I am still left to figure out why it is the GM that we are voting on. If we are to follow the model of the European mega-clubs -- the Barcas, Madrids, and Bayerns -- then the office we should be voting on is Club President. [as an aside, who can name the Sounder's Club President?] Furthermore, we ought to reasonably expect some sort of nomination process and actual race leading up to an election -- because as much as we may not like these things they do serve a purpose of vetting the candidates (or at least that's the intent).
So we are left with a false choice... as point of fact we are left with no real choice. This is why I will just be leaving my ballot blank.