In the world of politics, conferences are tools with many uses: they gather the faithful under one roof, they educate and inculcate, and the best ones entertain. But there's a part of the conference apparatus that works only sporadically. It's the star-maker machinery, and yesterday it was operating on all cylinders as congressional candidate Darcy Burner of Washington State addressed the afternoon plenary with a presentation that did all of the above. In other words, I have seen the future of political rock stars, and her name is Darcy Burner.
Burner had the unenviable task of being the opening speaker for a keynote session that also featured senatorial candidates Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii. The session, titled "2012 and the War on (and for) Women" was formatted to allow each candidate to make a speech, followed by a discussion moderated by the Huffington Post's Amanda Terkel.
Where a standard-issue politician would have used that occasion to deliver her best version of her stump speech, Burner's remarks were, by turns, prescriptive and inspirational, accompanied by a PowerPoint that outlined a plan for winning not just elections, but hearts and minds.
As awesome as it was to see all the interest in an app that'll let consumers spend in accordance with their values...
...my company, Spend Consciously, has been working on just such an app for over a year now.
So basically, from my perspective, Burner's keynote was a call to action to progressive techies to ... well ... compete with us.
I kid. The more interest in this field the better. Consumers have never been TRULY empowered to vote with their wallets. And no one has the time to research every product they buy - not thoroughly anyway.
We're working on a crowdfunding campaign on StartSomeGood, if this sort of thing sounds awesome to you.