Like many Americans, I came away frustrated by the first presidential debate. It seemed
more about each candidate's sound bites and their dominance over the moderator, Jim
Lehrer, than about a true debate over differences in policy.
I recently ran across a great
TED talk by Harvard Business School professor and researcher Amy Cuddy who
studies the amazing affects of power poses. One of the poses was a "Wonder Woman"
pose where she stands with her knuckles meeting her hips. I was excited to think how
that could apply to the presidential debate.
What would the debate have been like if Wonder Woman moderated? Her golden lasso,
which forces a person to tell the truth, would have come in extremely handy. We could
figure out once and for all what each candidate truly stood for. Speaking of standing,
Wonder Woman would not sit behind a desk below the candidates. Attuned to the
power of her posture, she would stand right in between the two gentlemen. If, as Mitt
Romney threatened to cut off funding to PBS, either candidate threatened to cut off
funding for the Wonder Woman show (were it still on), she would cross her wrists and
deflect that attack handily.
Most importantly, coming from Paradise Island, an island inhabited only by women,
Wonder Woman wouldn't forget to ask ANY questions relating to women. She would
make sure we all knew where the candidates stood on pay equity, women's health
issues and childcare issues.
Okay, so we can't have Wonder Woman moderate the next presidential debate. There
is something to be said about the power pose and the moderator though. Jim Lehrer
would have had more perceived power if he was on the same level as the candidates.
Let's ask Candy Crowley to stand and strike a Wonder Woman pose for two minutes
before the debate begins. Amy Cuddy's research shows this can make a difference.