I don't know about you, but I am so glad this election cycle is over I could dance. That is, if I had any rhythm. And while I am not excited about the outcome, I fully intend to assume the best out of our new president-elect. I will continue to hope and pray he considers all voices in making the decisions necessary for the nation at this critical time.
After enduring 25 months of nonstop campaigning, I took a couple of days to review my thoughts and have compiled a list of observations we should consider as a nation. The events of this election have forever changed American politics. Some changes are positive and some very negative.
Anyone, and I mean anyone, can be president
There is no limitation now – not skin color or gender, not cultural or ethnic background. There are no longer limits, that is if you have an extra billion dollars lying around or can raise money like a televangelist. Elections in the future will require a billion dollar entry fee.
When Obama reneged on his promise to accept public financing and then went on to raise nearly a billion dollars; he forever destroyed the hope of removing money from politics. Any man or woman from 90210 down to the barrio will never be limited by the color of their skin or their upbringing, if they can raise money.
Communication will be crucial
Obama should learn from the mistakes of President Bush
. He should not adopt an arrogant attitude toward communicating with the American people. Silence breeds suspicion, and the American people are entitled to be informed by their president as to what he is doing.
During the campaign, President-elect Obama exhibited arrogance when asked questions. It was almost a "none of your business" attitude. Of course, that was when he would allow anyone to ask him anything in the first place. His campaign limited his exposure to the press. It may have been a great strategy to get elected, but it will be disastrous to his presidency.
A president is not required to go public with "classified" information. He must first and foremost keep the nation safe. He must, however, communicate with the people. Bush made a huge mistake by not talking to us about the war, Hurricane Katrina and many other issues. His lack of communication allowed the media to define him, instead of being able to define himself.
Any unbiased mind would agree: Obama received very favorable treatment from the press, but that is soon to change. And that is a good thing. The last thing Obama needs is a perceived "affirmative action" presidency. The press will do him no favor by doing him favors. Reporters must keep the same eye on this president as Presidents Reagan, Clinton and Bush. Equal accountability is essential.
The move toward socialism will not work
America is like a man who walks into a bar and announces, "Drinks on me." Immediately everyone embarks on hours of enjoyment. As the revelers leave, the bartender presents the bill to the benevolent purveyor of cheer. Only one problem ... the man has no money to pay. He looked good and seemed very rich. So the bartender assumed he had the ability to cover the tab.
America has long been holding a party we could ill afford and now the bill is due. The leaders are saying, "We have 150 million workers who we collect taxes from, so we will just collect a little more and pay the bill." But can they? You and I both know the answer. We cannot, and most know the jig is up.
So we will need a leader who is straight with the American people – one who will tell the truth. We need a leader who knows popularity is a weakness when trying to lead a people from fantasy into reality and a leader who must tell the people it is time to tighten the belt, live within our means and not depend on the government for all the cures.
America has recently accepted small doses of socialism to "fix" the financial markets. None have succeeded. Khrushchev once said, "We cannot expect Americans to jump from capitalism to communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving Americans doses of socialism, until they suddenly awake to find out they have communism."
Obama should not fulfill Khrushchev's dream. It is not too late to return to market-based solutions for the financial mess we are in. Government is making the problems worse, not better. It is time for government to stop bailing everyone out, step aside and allow the market to absorb what has already been done. Patience is what is needed now not more stimulus.
Soon Obama and Speaker Pelosi will receive what they have long been after – power. However, power has no value unless those wielding it have a plan that will restore confidence back to a system that depends on confidence to exist and thrive.
Wasteful spending and bigger government is a turnoff for the average American. Only socialists want more government. I can only hope that Obama abandons the move to socialism we have seen from both sides of the political aisle. He must embrace free markets with effective regulation, not just more regulation.
So, I wish our new president success. After eight years of nonstop attack on George Bush as payback for the eight years of attack on Clinton, it is time to call a truce. We need to work together as Americans – not Republicans and Democrats, not conservatives or liberals, not black or white – but Americans.
I have heard over and over, Obama is our first black president. He is not. He is our first half-white and half-black president. But more importantly, he is an American president. He represents all Americans now.
On Jan. 20, he will be my president and hopefully yours.
This election has forever changed elections in the future. If Obama and his party fail, I will take no pleasure in that. For if that were to happen, we all fail. There is a time to say enough, and I think that time has come.
I hope Obama learns from life experience, history and the advisers with whom he surrounds himself. I hope he takes the time to think the issues through and looks for solutions, not actions that please his party. I pray he learns that now he must have a dialog with the American people to enlist their confidence.
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