Frank Hyland’s Food for Thought:
Politicians at the federal, state, and municipal levels all come into office with their own cherished To-Do lists. Since, at the federal level, there are 535 Members of Congress and many more White House Staffers and Cabinet Department stalwarts, a clash of To-Do lists inevitably ensues. It’s called “Politics.” One of the qualities of the more effective leaders is that they orchestrate the agendas and resolve the different lists. It should come as no surprise that the way that good leaders do this is by prioritizing the items on the myriad of lists. The focus that we see – speeches, hearings, investigations, regulations – tells us what the elected officials have on their lists and in what priority order.
Your To-Do list is: Jobs, jobs, and jobs, in that order. Even a brief look at the issues that have received major attention from Congress and the White House in the past couple of years will shed light on whether their lists are similar to yours: Cash for Clunkers; Roger Clemens’ alleged use of performance-enhancing substances; the yacht race engaged in by the then-BP Chairman; Green Power; Shovel Ready jobs; “illegal” wood used in guitars; how many hours of sleep California babysitters get each day; banning e-cigarettes on commercial plane flights. Had enough? I thought so.
In the meantime: The stock market has been on a roller coaster ride, plummeting steeply in recent days and ravaging the 401K plans of millions of Americans, including middle class retirees; the taxpayer dollars spent on food stamps skyrocketed from 30 billion to 65 billion dollars; illegal immigration continues; and Iran continues to threaten not only Israel, but the entire Middle East and the United States.
Got the picture? Sure you do. You work, or at least you used to work until government policies caused a layoff. You save and invest. You worry about threats to your financial and physical safety and that of your family members. You pay your own way, or at least you would like to do be able to do that. It is clearer and clearer to you that your priorities – your To-Do list — differ greatly from those of most office holders in Washington and elsewhere nowadays. What to do? It may seem daunting at first because of the sheer size to which “Government” at all levels has ballooned, but the answer is simple and straightforward – after investigating the candidates elect those who seek to enact your To-Do list. The next time you hear a candidate speak of “fundamentally transforming America,” draw a line through their name and continue your selection process. Be especially wary of incumbents.
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