Success and tenacity go hand in hand.
Dave Cunningham / October 21, 2008
We are two weeks away from election day which will, according to all promises, presage the “changes” we have been hearing so much about. We had time for a change, then change we can believe in, then the real agents of change. I don’t know about you. But I have heard enough talk about change. The truth is that change happens with or without campaign promises.
Just look at the past month’s change in our banks and the stock market. No one, not our political leaders, nor our egghead economists, nor our high-paid CEO’s saw it coming. Now we are investing billions, maybe trillions in a bank bailout or a financial recovery effort, call it what you want. Still our leaders are guessing. Will it work? They don’t know for sure. They hope it will. They think it might. But they don’t know.
What if one of the candidates was elected and was able to bring the change that they are talking about. For example, what if we saw a new era of partisan cooperation in Washington DC? What if we could all have the same kind of healthcare program as our elected Congressional Representatives and Senators? What if we could become energy independent? What if we could get all of our old manufacturing jobs back? What if we could update our education system in this country? I could continue. But I think you get the point. Once the shouting is done, the ballots are counted and the new team comes to town, we probably will not see much change.
Bottom lines; one, the system is entrenched and two, we don’t have any money left. It would be like deciding to return the scene of a devastating house fire to attempt to rebuild using the ashes and old charred remnants of the house while relying on the arsonist who set the fire to take charge of the repair.
But I still prefer optimism. Maybe there can be changes that will be good. Here are some changes that could happen.
We could seriously invest in education for our children. They are the future. We could offer them a good education, only if they want it and will work for it. The “one size fits all” approach to learning is dated and has failed.
We could spend serious federal dollars rebuilding our infrastructure. It has to happen and will provide much needed jobs. Same thing for energy innovation, it has to happen and will provide jobs.
Using the bully pulpit, a new president could kick off a Support America / Buy American campaign. Right now, we as Americans are shooting ourselves in the foot with our passion for buying the cheapest goods. Every time one of us opts for a less expensive Chinese product over a more expensive American product, we contribute to job loss.
The biggest change of all could come from “we the people.” We could start acting responsibly and in our collective best interest.
Until all or any of that happens, here’s a change we didn’t expect, the lost value of our nest eggs. Personally, after investing for over 30 years, I have a little less now than I would have had if I had stuffed my money under a mattress. Many Americans now fear that the final change we can believe in will be what is left of their investments, nest eggs, and retirement funds when this financial crisis finally passes, pocket change!