Rob Carlson, Democrat for US Congress
New Jersey District 1
Rob Carlson, Democrat for US Congress
New Jersey District 1

Who is Rob?

That’s kind of a strange question to ask of myself, but I guess I ought to give it a whirl.

I am an Information Technology Director by trade in Collingswood NJ.  I’ve been doing this for well over a decade, I’ve been involved in systems administration (basically computers and networking) for almost 20 years now.  On the side I do artwork– mostly painting.  I love to bake, throw disks, collect music (and sing along badly) and play with my kids.

Regarding that, I have been happily with my wife for over 15 years, and have 4 wonderful children ranging in ages from 22 to 7.

I’ve had many jobs, I know what it is like to be without money.  However,  I don’t know what it is like to be completely destitute– because I have been privileged enough to have family and friends who could lift me up a bit when I really needed it.  Many Americans do not have that.  This is truly a case of “there but for the grace of G-d, go I”.

I am a passionate person–  I get angry at injustice and bullying.  I see political timidity in the face of evil and it pisses me off.  We may lose battles.  But we sure as hell should leave a scar on those who would make us a country of desperate paupers.  Now you see I resorted to profanity.  I tend to do that a lot.  It’s a character flaw.  Just thought you ought to know that going in.  I also crack a lot of jokes, as you doubtless have noticed if you have been looking at this website.  That’s a both a blessing and a curse.  I’m fairly self-reliant as well.  I designed and set up all the infrastructure around this web page and did the lion’s share of the writing for it (so far all of it actually, but hopefully that changes).  It may not be the most professional or slickest page around, but it’s mine.

So why would I make a good Congressman?  One aspect of my skill sets — as reflected in my career choice– has been my ability to distill a problem down to its barest elements and to effectively communicate that problem.  I try to be the person in the room who can focus on the problem at hand and not be distracted by paths that take one away from a solution.  I try not to let the perfect be the enemy of the good, but also try to remember that patches are patches– not solutions.  On a more particular note, while I am not a technical genius, I understand the communications and computer industry.  I know how phones, networks, software, and media platforms work and interoperate; as this is what I do.  I won’t be buffaloed by people who have a tech agenda that is bad for America.

Voters have to be concerned with both their representative’s stands and their understanding of the issues of the day.   People may not agree with everything I say, but they will understand my philosophy and will know that I have done my homework. My beliefs may prove to be a lightning rod. I may make controversial statements that seem impolite, but I will speak the truth.  I will not shy away from taking a stand on issues that may not have popular support — but on the other hand, I will not be drawn into making blanket statements when answers require nuance.  Whatever the issue you will know where I stand, unless I realize that I don’t know enough about something.  I will be able to admit that as well, and won’t be ashamed to seek counsel from those more knowledgeable than me.

Lastly, I like to dream big.  Impossible today does not mean impossible forever.  We can not fail to plan for what we will one day be able to do.