January 24th, 2009
11:59 PM ET

The urgency of patience

Michael Schulder
CNN Senior Executive Producer

Our CNN colleague, David Gergen, was giving a seminar on presidential speechwriting the day before the inauguration, and he said something that stuck: "One of Barack Obama's biggest challenges," he said, is to "keep patience alive." That original turn of phrase, keep patience alive, brought me back more than 20 years, to a rally I covered in Harlem, for the man whose mantra was "keep hope alive."

The event, on Malcolm X Boulevard, was for Democratic Presidential Candidate Jesse Jackson. To be a Jackson supporter required a lot of hope and patience. Jackson was late, as usual. Very late. The crowd waited for a half hour, an hour, an hour and a half. Patience was running out. To prevent a mutiny, the organizers started a chant of "Run Jesse, Run." One supporter finally lost patience and left muttering "Damn Jesse, Damn."

Attending the inauguration of Barack Obama required enormous patience among the million plus who attended. Getting into the inauguration grounds, ticket in hand, took hours. And there were very few good views to be had once you got beyond the gates. But that didn't matter.

Listen to the words of a leading technology executive named Robin Richards, who sent this text message to a CNN friend from the inauguration stands that day. "A sense of pride and civility between all American people at levels I have not ever experienced. Hope is the loudest sound." That from a Republican who did not vote for Barack Obama.

Mr. Obama has inspired hope among a wide variety of Americans. And hope and patience are, of course, connected. If the spirit of the crowds at the inauguration was any indication, he'll get some time to make things happen. But how patient should the American people be?

One of my formative experiences on the tension between patience and urgency came ten years ago when our first child was four days old. She stopped eating. My wife and I thought something was terribly wrong. One doctor urged patience – a "wait and see" approach.

"Wait and see is a sucker's game," said my father-in-law. So we rushed our daughter to the hospital. The abdominal x-rays told the doctors something was terribly wrong – that urgent action was needed.

Before we knew it, our daughter was on the operating table. What the surgeon found when he opened her up was a perforated duodenal ulcer, so rare in a newborn that none of the doctors at the superb Egelston Children's Hospital in Atlanta had ever seen such a case before. Sort of like today's economists and business leaders. Dr. Mark Wulkan patched up the ulcer. But our daughter didn't wake up from the anesthesia that day. One of the hospital's leading medical professors advised us to be patient, to take this one day at a time. We took his advice, as best we could, because we knew the doctors were doing everything they could.

That's what we want from President Obama, and the Congress. To do everything in their power to heal the country, with a balance between urgency and patience.

When I got on a plane in Atlanta headed for the inauguration I asked the pilot what he thought of that landing in the Hudson. How about that skill! "The hand of God was involved," answered the pilot. The hand of God? Wait. That's not the answer I was looking for. I wanted to hear this pilot tell me something like, "well, that's what we're trained to do."

I wanted the pilot to tell me it was all about skill and passion and commitment. That's what I want to believe about air safety. That's what I wanted to believe when the surgeon who took my 4-day-old-daughter into the operating room. And that's what I want to believe about Barack Obama and the new administration. That skills and sense of purpose possessed by President Obama, his team, and the members of the Senate and House, will guide us to a safe landing and lead our nation to a healthy recovery.

The founding fathers did not create a system of government that can quickly and safely bring down a plane whose engines have been knocked out by geese. They did not create a system of government that can, with minimal deliberation, open up the stomach of a four day old child. And yet the situation is clearly urgent. America is hemorrhaging jobs. The blood transfusion of taxpayer cash from the federal government is not yet getting to the people who need it.

"The recovery package that we're passing is only going to be one leg of a three legged stool," President Obama said Friday. In other words, we're working fast, but be patient. There are lots of pieces that must be put in place to create the foundation for a successful recovery.

And so, over these first 100 days of the Obama Administration, we must ask ourselves, each and every day, are our leaders in Washington doing everything in their power to serve America's interests. The answer must be yes, to maintain the urgency of now, and to keep patience alive.

As for my daughter, she is a healthy 10 year old. And as for the pilot who told me the "hand of God" was involved in the Hudson River episode, all I can say is that, for whatever reason, our flight to Washington was very smooth.

Filed under: Barack Obama • David Gergen • Michael Schulder • Raw Politics
soundoff (97 Responses)
  1. Surendra Rastogi

    Very fluid, to the point and nicely written article. I could not agree more that situation needs immediate relief before it is too late and people loose patience.

    January 24, 2009 at 6:08 pm |
  2. Gabriele, Ontario Canada

    Has anyone mentioned to President Obama that he got the job? His campaign is over. Stop the endless speech-making and do some work already!

    January 24, 2009 at 5:45 pm |
  3. nostradufus

    Excellent article. One of the few.

    January 24, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  4. Donna J

    This article was simply OUTSTANDING. As the pilot had stated it was "the hand of God", so I believe it is "the hand of God" who is going to govern Pres. Obama's path and they (all of them the House, the Senate, etc) will unite as one body to guide us to a better tomorrow. We are all aware we did not get here overnight and we will not get through overnight, but we need to keep our faith that we have come through before and we will come through this time. PATIENCE

    January 24, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  5. John Galt in Colorado

    The only people I feel sorry for worse than the conservatives who lost the election, are the liberals who are expecting so much and will receive so little. The policies that Obama's admin. and the liberal congress support are not going to make this country stronger. They will simply impower the Govt. to have more control over our lives and make us more dependent on them.

    WHO IS JOHN GALT? It is too late to answer the question now........

    January 24, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  6. Erika

    Great Post! I wish more people would adhere to the same logical balance you've offered. However, because the situation seems so dire and too bleak people lose their heads about them. I'm afraid we need to understand that Obama is just a person and like he said the day of his inauguration that it's got to be all of us. He will never be perfect, but that doesn't mean he can never be held accountable. Above all else, we need to give our newly elected government a chance before we resign to pessimism.

    January 24, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  7. ab

    "The hand of God" is certainly involved. Human beings have limits, "what we are trained to do" has its limits. So, anything beyond that would have to be something truly BEYOND, something called "God" by some, "luck" by some others. When people pray, they try to invoke and acknowledge that great beyond. While ordinary people make a "hero" out of the pilot, and thank the pilot, the pilot will privately (and possibly publicly) thank "God" for the simple reason that "Any number of things could have gone wrong". All of the passengers claimed to have remembered "God" and said "hail marys" in their time of crisis. This is also a request to the great beyond. So, it seems like an ingrained response in everyone. Maybe it's in the genes, despite all the skepticism we acquire as we live our lives.

    January 24, 2009 at 5:12 pm |

    I think this story falls really short, thinking that a few people can make that big a differance in the economy. It is easy to say print more money and start handing it out to select group. Trust me, if you have a job that makes $50,000 a year, and your wife makes 50 grand, they think your rich. I see plenty of so called people in poverty, but they all have a cell phone.

    January 24, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  9. JR

    Hope and Change are good campain slogans but will not be effective when it comes to solving problems. Obama can Hope his policies work, but he cannot Change Washington and the big money that controls it!

    January 24, 2009 at 4:55 pm |
  10. Larry of Massachusetts

    I will try to keep patience alive and pray that President Obama realizes that putting a tax cheat in charge of the IRS is not appropriate.

    I will try to keep patience alive and pray that Obama sticks to his promise of no earmarks or pork. In this vein, I know patience will allow the President to see that $250 million for condoms may stimulate students to action but not the econonmy.

    That millions for new swimming pools will get us all wet but not take us out of the recession.

    That while projects to be funded in 2011, 2012, and 2013 are surely patient in their start dates, they will not take us out of the recession fast enough.

    The millions for new grass on the Washington Mall will make those that sit on it feel more comfortable, but will not put them back to work.

    That vowing not to hire lobbyists in his administration is positive, but making a large exception 1 day later neither demonstrates patience or commitment to the promise.

    That vowing for a bi partisan approachs does not mean ramming through Congress a largely useless spending pork bill, with zero (as in zip, nada, no) republicans cast a vote for it.

    That closing GITMO is noble, but knowing what to do with the enemy combatants before the War on Terror is over, takes both patience and foresight.

    Yes, the urgency of patience is important .... but so is common sense, fair play, and keeping promises. Many of us are still waiting patiently to see the latter.

    January 24, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  11. Fay - California

    What other choice do the American people have but to be patient? President Obama has an enormous task ahead of him and although he and his cabinet have made some impressive moves this past week, it is unrealistic to think that the deep-rooted problems we face economically and otherwise will somehow disappear within the "First 100 days".

    January 24, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  12. Stephen

    Its very interesting the call for patience after the elections when it comes to the economy, yet there seems to be a great deal of urgency for this administration to deal with other issues in the most liberal fashion. Simply amazing!

    January 24, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  13. prasad

    I am in total agreement with your assessment of the current economic situation and the need for patience as the new administration takes it in and tackles the enormity of the task that is in front of them due to the market knows everything policies of the previous administration. I hope people of all ideologies will wish them Godspeed in their effort to right the wrongs and bring about the change that this nation so desperately needs.

    January 24, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  14. John T. Matthias

    God will straighten out the United States mess in his time frame not our time frame. Being patient wull be required by all believers and non-believers.



    January 24, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  15. paul Ciavarra

    maybe mr. hannity should read this........

    January 24, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  16. Faith


    Thank you for articulating the issue of patience. CNN can do so much to help us have the information to judge when and how patient we as citizens need to be. Macro economics will take much time to change and yet initiating actions need to be immediate. Giving the pubic tools to gauge which issues are critical (in your daughter's case a doctor serious enough to make it his business to investigate quickly) and which require patience (again, in your daughter's case having to wait to see if medicine is effective) is important.

    It would be a welcome change, if media–perhaps with CNN leading– could help people begin to delve into the complexity of the economic, environmental, social, and security challenges we are facing as a nation. I thought the series, Planet in Peril. was an example of information based coverage. Although "crisis" and "sound-bite" news reporting is exciting and elevates everybody's interest and blood temperature and ratings, without some in-depth information, it is difficult for people to make the informed decisions that are needed to move forward. Good luck and thanks.

    January 24, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  17. curtis whiting

    Anderson, I agree with that pilot that the hand of god was with the other pilot. No matter how much skill and training he had, there were too many things that could have gone wrong. The same as with your child and the same with this election. The hand of God was in the hands of those physicians and the hand of God was in this election. If you look at everything that has happened, starting with the win in Iowa, this all looks like a fantacy movie. I saw new reporters trying to report what they had just witnessed and none could find appropiate words because they knew that they had witnessed something special yet they weren'tt quite sure what. I saw a young black man raise more money that anyone dreamed possible. I saw people from all over the world drawn to a man as if he were their own. I saw record number of people turn out to elect a young black man, and I saw two million people, stand all day, in freezing cold, just to witness his inaguration. No doubt with another 5 hundred million watching on tv. I saw democrat and republican, black and white, american and non-american, young and old, all with the same belief, that this is the man we need to lead us. There is only one explanation. " THE HAND OF GOD."

    January 24, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  18. Dave Kaspersin

    Thank you Micheal.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  19. randall breitwisch

    To that pilot who invoked God's hand in the Hudson River landing, the reasonable response should be, "Why didn't God put a mighty hand in front of the engine to keep the birds out in the first place?"

    Oh, I forgot that there is a response to that, too..."God works in mysterious ways."

    A thinking person would not depend upon God for an explanation. I put my trust in engineers, scientists, and pilots. It's particularly scary that a pilot (a pilot!) would be depending on God to help him do his job.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:43 pm |
  20. Asif Alam

    actions are much bigger then words – and that is another thing is absolute imperative for the Obama administration to create a perception where the common man starts believing in patience as they see promises turning into reality – no matter how slow they roll in..

    January 24, 2009 at 3:41 pm |
  21. Lisa

    Patience is what we don’t have seeing government run our country from industry with many good paying manufacturing job to jobless consumers country.
    I am disencouraged by Obama's appointment, former lobbyist to be deputy defense secretary, same old, same, old. And,treasury secretary nominee Tim Geithner didn’t pay tax was not a “common mistake” Every year, by tax time, I am scared to death if I miss the tax dead line let along NOT pay tax!

    January 24, 2009 at 3:37 pm |
  22. Barbara Berl

    I believe in the hand of God, and I have patience,, for the right decisions. However, yesterday it was revealed that a fleet of new cars for congress and senate were ordered! In this economy with our problems mounting at such an alarming rate, I have no Patience for this type of business as usual! Who will benefit from this type of action? Not me, not the millions of people out of work, not the poor single mother who cries herself to sleep at night because she can no longer afford to feed her children, not the millions of veterans who are very quickly loosing their benefits as the government attempts to save money,,,, and the list goes on and on! If there is a god I certainly hope he will guide Obamaland in the direction of the American people because no one has looked out for us in many tens of years, not really!

    January 24, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  23. Terry

    “The hand of God was involved,” answered the pilot. The hand of God? Wait. That’s not the answer I was looking for. I wanted to hear this pilot tell me something like, “well, that’s what we’re trained to do.”

    Sadly, you people who believe in some magical higher being are delusional.

    The fact is, the landing was 75% luck, and 25% skill.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:34 pm |
  24. mike

    With due respect to the author, the issue is making the right decisions to give patience a reasonable chance at bearing fruit. We do not expect a baby to be due until 9 months after conception, but we do need conception to start the process. It is also true that we need to manage expectations and to provide a vision of what success looks like! The old conception of success– the old conception of the american dream is still operating and is , I'm afraid, unrealistic for most of us. we must extend our finaancial horizons and plan to make do with less. We alone will no longer be the economic engine of the world. Our great challenge is to be satisfied with what is sufficient and to consider that as success.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  25. Andrew Summerville

    President Obama is very likely the greatest mind that has ever lead this country. Add to that his finely tuned morality, his obvious compassion, his leadership capability, and his love of country – I don't think we could be in better hands. Given all that, stay close to the lifeboats.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  26. johnrj08

    What we've been seeing since January 20th is a massive over-correction by the media in the coverage of the Obama administration, after too may years of inadequate reporting on what will no doubt be viewed as the worst administration in United States history.

    Putting the new administration under this microscopic hunt for mistakes and inconsistencies serves no one but a media that is trying to make amends for its lack of attentiveness over the last eight years. I make note, particularly, of Campbell Brown's embarrassingly feeble attempts to uncover flaws in the new administration and connect it to completely irrelevant events, such as the Blagojevich fiasco in Illiniois or even Caroline Kennedy's pulling out of her quest for the NY senatorial seat.

    The worst thing about this current style of reporting is that it isn't really reporting at all. It's punditry and sensationalism sitting behind an anchor's desk, with all the implied dignity of a Walter Cronkite broadcast, but with none of the credibility. The vague line between objective reporting and biased commentary has been all but erased by most news organizations in their hunt for more "BREAKING NEWS" even when there is no news breaking.

    No administration can do its job effectively under that kind of pervasive and frequently inept scrutiny. You don't have to be an 'Obamabot' to give the Obama administration fair treatment in your reporting. You just have to be a decent journalist with some integrity.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  27. Karen Coady

    How about the speech George W. made with the bull horn standing atop the smoldering debris at Ground Zero after 9/11? He said the path to finding those responsible and bringing them to justice would be long – certainly, the American people did not have the patience to see that task through.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  28. FLWarder

    It will be the People, not Obama, not Pelosi, not Reid, not the government, that will resolve our economic dilema, just as they resolved in a few short months the spiralling cost of oil.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  29. Isabel, RJ, Brazil

    The first steps of President Obama were very well seen by all:

    » Rules strict of transparency to the administration;
    » Freezing the salaries of its officials in the White House;
    » Banning the activities of lobbyists for officials of the Government;
    » End of the Guantanamo prison in a year;
    » Prohibition of torture and ill-treatment in interrogation and detention of prisoners;
    » Videocast weekly and blog, on the website of the White House.

    If the next steps follow this rhythm and solve problems effectively, there is hope for Americans (and for us neighbors).
    But that collective euphoria scares me a lot!

    And if the results didn't become immediately visible to the people, which is to be expected, keep the patience and hope will be an art.
    Again, I rebound that the press has to cooperate and not just criticize and recovered`.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  30. Marty

    Well said...as a manager myself, it is quite the balance to keep; I could only imagine what it is like on such a large scale as President. His campaign was so much about patience, and yet, it seems as if his presidency, as early as it is, has a sense of urgency. I hope he can once again find that balance which I think got him to the White House in the first place.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  31. Rose Lord

    Thank you, Anderson, for this excellent commentary.
    Patience is not a virtue common to our society. This is the "I want it all and I want it now" generation. So perhaps we will have to re-discover this thing called "patience. "
    I know the job of the news media is to report everything as you see it (my son is a reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) but I hope those of you in the news profession will exercise a little patience as well. Don't be so quick to jump on any potential slip-up that President Obama may make and exaggerate it all out of proportion.
    For example, he's receiving a lot of criticism for announcing the closing of Guantanamo without having a plan in place as to where the prisoners will be sent, but if he had delayed the announcement of its closing, which he said during his campaign was going to be one of his first orders of business, he would be receiving at least as much criticism and probably from the same sources. Afterall, he has a whole year to work that out. It's not as though he announced that it would be closed next week or next month.
    My point is, let's not cancel out the hopefulness with which President Obama's election and inauguration has infused citizens of the United States and the world by casting a jaundice eye on everything he does just for the sake of "making news."
    I'm very glad to hear that your daughter is healthy and thriving.

    Rose Lord

    January 24, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  32. Gina

    We do need patience to get out of this horrible mess of 30 plus years of deregulation inforced greed, Republican agreement with 8 years of corrupt leadership, failed policies and division. Now we have to be patient while we watch a group of sore losers show their immaturity and systemic racism. Just look at Eric Cantor of Virginia and John Bochner minority leader. Just look at the news reporters and anchors who are still refusing to address the president as President Obama. Talk about being patient, how about not showing your ignorance while being patient and helpful.


    January 24, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  33. Willy Brown

    The media got #44 elected so they will do what it takes to prop him up.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  34. Greg

    Excellent read.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  35. Lawrence Jahn

    Great essay, Mr. Schulder. To you, and to Mr. Richards: I'm glad that some Republicans can feel this wind of change, too. I was there in Grant Park Election Night, which was also extraordinary for its friendliness and camaraderie. We who backed Pres. Obama don't think Republicans are monsters: when I was 18-24 I voted Republican. And none of us, that I know of, are FOR abortion, or many of the outrageous defamations. We want a lot of the same things, but with different strategies for getting there. If we're Socialists–well, what do you call Republicans who have not called for a dismantling of our whole tax structure? And can logic substantiate the notion that gay rights threaten familly and morality for all? No, what we need is more honesty in looking at ourselves and each other. The current platform of the Republican Party (and many Democrats), the avarice and runaway materialism, the belief that WE, as opposed to our IDEAS, are superior, are way back in the wake of this new wave. The Anachronistic Partry must either show regard for the downtrodden or (as Ben Stein points out!) face the rise of a different alternative–the Reform Party or Green Party or some other 2nd party, as used to happen in the U.S.'s first 100 years.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  36. Phrank

    Well put. What a fine line to navigate! I've frowned preemptively on what I expect in the months to come: those who will find, a few months from now, that our situation isn't perfect, and that clearly Obama is not doing his job. Of course it's going to take more than a few months for things to get better.

    With that said, we can't be patient forever, and furthermore, we must stay vigilant to see that our new Administration and our new Congress are doing what we told them to do by electing them in November, and what we're paying them to do now. As one who voted for–and spent twelve hours in a patient, orderly, freezing-cold mob to see–Obama, I don't expect miracles, and I certainly don't expect miracles if we see them on the horizon.

    January 24, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  37. Stacy

    Let's all hope that there is a "hand of God" to play a role in all this "stuff". Otherwise, the sun will burn out in about 5 billion years and, well....

    January 24, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  38. zepplin

    this is AMERICA...we have no patience...we do not look beyond the moment and it is in our genes. this is what makes our nation stay on the move, on top, and great. time is of the essence..."get on with it or get out of the way "because we are coming through...we will never change...competition is the reason and force behind it.and it is also our reason to not wait...for anything. "do it or we will find someone who will get it done". NOW! TOO BAD WE CANNOT SIT AND WAIT AND BE PATIENT AS IT WOULD DO US WELL TO CONTEMPLATE, AT LEAST OCCASSIONALLY...we are fulled by pharmaceuticals for our stress and work way too much and too hard to enjoy the bounty we have...there are always things to accomplish and we are running around in all directions at once to get them done, now, and move on...often leaving havoc in the wake. we will never change ,nor will we wait...

    January 24, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  39. danny

    I believe all that is involved (skill, expertise, knowledge and the hand of God). Barack and the Congress is going to need our prayers and our volunteerism. We can't expect them to fix us, nor more than an addict can expect N.A. to fix him. We all will have to do our part and with love, faith, patience and good will, maybe then God will help us too.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  40. txviewpoint

    Wow. This is a well-written piece! America must definitely be patient as lawmakers are working vigorously to pull us out of the ditch. On Tuesday, my faith in America and all of her promises were reinvented. Under this administration, hope begins again.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  41. David Brumley

    If the hand of God was involved in the Hudson River plane crash, it was God's hand that caused the plane to crash. It was God who tried to kill all those people and nearly succeeded. Fortunately, the hand of man was also involved and the people all survived. Let us all pray that the hand of God will not triumph over the hand of man in the current economic situation!

    January 24, 2009 at 2:48 pm |
  42. Rabbi Peter Schweitzer, The City Congregation for Humanistic Judaism, New York City

    Your blog reminds me of my two experiences going to Alaska to go rafting on beautiful rivers north of the Arctic Circle. Our group met in Fairbanks and flew from there to a small village of Bettles. From there we would take even smaller amphibious planes to the headwaters where we would start our expedition in the Brooks Range. However, the weather in that area is often very unreliable and one may have to sit around hours before it is safe to fly the final leg of the trip. That's when I learned the expression, "Hurry up and wait." We needed to be ready to go at an instant's notice, but also be prepared to hold off a little longer if necessary. In the end, we got to our destination safely.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  43. scott denton

    I judge from your rather casual comments about the pilot who said 'it was the hand of God' that you are a child of the '60's. big, strong, tough guy. Your day will come, like it does to most.

    If the pilot says it was the hand of God, let him run with it. I am a Christian. I am not sure that God gets into situations like a pilot facing death in the Hudson River, but I bet there were a lot of people on that plane doing a lot of praying before it was all over.

    I am happy that your flight to Washington was very smooth. You would perhaps not have been so flippant if it was not.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  44. zepplin

    this is AMERICA

    January 24, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  45. Nan

    Thank you for this. I hope your fellow commentators will heed this sage advice and not jump too quickly on the blame-game bandwagon.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  46. George P. Burdell

    A thoughtful and well-written piece of journalism. The stories of accomplished pediatric surgeons and wise pilots were excellent tools to help illustrate complex public policy issues. Thanks for sharing.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  47. Jannynet

    I truly believe patience is necessary, also, as long as we are moving forward. I was dismayed to hear a lot of people in the crowds at the inauguration talking about what this new president was going to give them. Didn't they listen to his message? It's about what we can all do together to achieve stability in our country not what is given to us.

    That's why I cast my vote for Barack Obama. For his constant emphasis on "we" and that includes our lawmakers who I hope will be listening.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  48. Joan

    I am growing increasingly angry over what Boehner and the other Republican talking heads are saying about creating roadblocks to Obama's economic plan. Where were their concerns and/or actions over the past year when our economy was sinking into the abyss? It only took them a week to approve Bush's $700 Billion "plan", and they didn't worry then about appropriate oversight and tracking, nor did they express concerns about "giving" the billions to financial institutions and banks.

    Frankly, I believe that most Americans are like me and expect our government to begin working FOR the people of our nation instead of continuing partisan politics. They've already seriously damaged the Republican Party; and if they don't demonstrate any ability to establish a reasonable economic platform, then the Republican Party as we know it will cease to exist in 2010.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:22 pm |
  49. Carlos

    I really enjoyed this article. Great comparison to the past.

    January 24, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  50. Al Leong


    Great article and personal example. Thank you for sharing your personal experience.

    It is very tough for a society that spawned consumerism, and customer is king, that you can't have it all right away, the way you want, any way you want, the RIGHT away!

    Balance is such an astute solution.

    My best,

    Al Leong

    January 24, 2009 at 1:26 pm |
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