Today in the United States is Presidents’ Day – a federal and, in California, state holiday set aside to remember the first President of our country, George Washington, and one of our greatest presidents, Abraham Lincoln – both whose birthdays are in February. Being that it is Presidents’ Day it makes me also give thought to our country’s newest president, President Obama. Also, being that I have a home-based business and one of President Obama’s first priorities is doing something – anything – to help our economy, I thought this holiday an appropriate one to ruminate about it all.
I have much interest in this newest president for a few reasons:
- He’s the first president in my lifetime who is younger than me – don’t know why this is significant, just is
- He is from a diverse racial background and to me better represents Americans in general – I may be caucasian, but my family genetics come from all over Europe…most of them poor- I mention this because your skin does not have to have rich pigmentation for you to have a diverse heritage
- He didn’t grow up rich. I’m so glad to have a president in office who remembers what it is like to live on a budget; to “make do;” to appreciate the rewards of work
- He seems to be very intelligent and extremely and genuinely interested in this country
- And I finally feel as though there is a president in office who reflects my values – who I think actually represents me as a citizen of this country
So, I bought his second book, “The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream.”
I don’t usually get political in this blog…I like to stick to discussions of home-based business, direct selling, that sort of thing; but sometimes you just can’t help it. Yesterday’s business page in my local newspaper screamed scarey headlines of possibly more bank closures…or worse. What will this mean to the millions of people who are doing their best to keep shelter over their families and food on the table? Our federal government is in debt and the state I live in – California- fiscally is an embarrassement. [Let me just say on this subject that I am sick to death of partisan politics. Leave your party politics on the sidewalk before you enter the legislature and once inside do the job for what you were elected: be a citizen representing other citizens.]
In his book, President Obama writes [pages 30-31, paperback edition]:
- “…Of course, there is another story to be told, by the millions of Americans who are going about their business every day. They are on the job or looking for work, starting businesses, helping their kids with their homework, and struggling with high gas bills, insufficient health insurance, and a pension that some bankruptcy court somewhere has rendered unenforceable. They are by turns hopeful and frightened about the future. Their lives are full of contradictions and ambiguities….”
In the next paragraph he writes:
- “…A government that truly represents these Americans-that truly serves these Americans-will require a different kind of politics….And we will need to remind ourselves, despite all our differences, just how much we share; common hopes, common dreams, a bond that will not break….”
On this Presidents’ Day I am hoping fervently that politics will change. That it will cease to be an entity of its own and become a vehicle for establishing meaningful dialogue among diverse groups. I am hopeful that good men and women will shake off the shackles of party politics that has hamstrung our government at every level and actually realize they ran for office to be servants of the people…not servants of amorphous “platforms.” I am hopeful that good men and women will realize that their constinuencies need shelter, food, fuel and health care in order to keep the engine of commerce going…without it there is no country to govern.
I really like my little home-based business. I like that the company I’m with is international. I like that it offers anyone the potential for income that will make a difference in their lives through the vehicle of a product that makes a difference in their lives. I really want the marketplace to survive so that my business and millions of others just like it, will continue. If it means that a stimulus package is needed because President Obama says so, then make it so. I’m just one small voice in the world of commerce, but I’m tired that the only voices being heard are either “BIG” business or politics.
Does anyone else agree?