April 10th, 2011
03:15 PM ET

Letters to the President: #811 'Winning, not whining'

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Reporter's Note: In the new budget deal it certainly appears that the Republicans walked away with much more of what they were after than the Democrats did. So maybe the president will be happy to get today’s letter. Hey, it’s something.

Dear Mr. President,

If you see something flapping out of a window at the Capitol, you might want to check if it is Harry Reid’s shirt. Because the more I consider the final deal on this budget, the more it looks like he may have lost it in the process. And not just him. Your entire party.

Think about it: Democrats controls two-thirds of the lawmaking process (as in, the White House and the Senate) and yet you ended up steadily retreating from the Republican offensive in this battle. They looked much more in charge of things than your side did, and frankly, it’s been that way for a while. For crying out loud, even when your party controlled the whole shebang, what I heard over and over (and still do for that matter) is, “Well, the Republicans blocked everything! It was all their fault!”

I understand the frustration of Democrats, and I fully accept that Republicans have pulled all sorts of stunts to shut down your agenda. But that’s what political parties do. And if your team could not find a way to defend your policy plans with a huge majority, then I just can’t see how that is really, fundamentally the minority party’s fault. They fought for their views. You fought for yours. And when the cards went on the table in this budget deal it looks like they pretty convincingly picked up almost all the chips.

Again, I’m not defending or condemning their tactics. I’m not taking sides, I’m just talking tactics. I’m just saying it is probably a waste of time for Democrats to go around whining about it.

When I coached my daughters’ soccer teams I had a basic rule that I kept in mind: When you lose, you can blame the referee, you can blame the other team, you can blame the weather…but smart people look for their own blame first.

After all, your own performance is really the only thing that you can reliably change. And if you want to win, you must find ways to overcome obstacles - not just ways to complain about them.

Just saying…


Follow Tom on Twitter @tomforemancnn.

Find more of the Foreman Letters here.

soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. RaDonna Wood Lexington, Tn.

    Bravo Mr. Foreman! As always you put everything in such wonderful perspective! Very well said!

    April 11, 2011 at 9:49 pm |
  2. TanafFor

    Hey, I love Tom's comments 🙂
    But it's not Republicans' or Democrats' fault. You just don't go around and look for people to see who you can blame for your weakness. Politics is dirty. Everything in politics are just for a show and I don't even like to talk about the politicians, I don't tell you what I think of them. The day(The President and his crow of politicians take a real responsibility for this country and its people to keep their oat of office and to keeping us safe and prosperous in every means), will never come. This is how the world works, unfortunately.
    The Government never would have shut down, it was just a big, nasty joke. It's always something fishy somewhere and that is: Politics.
    P.S. Sorry for the wrong grammer and spelling in my English writing, after all I learned it just from watching TV 🙂
    Sincerely yours,
    Long Live Free Iran <3

    April 11, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
  3. Larry Donnaurnmo

    Hi Anderson love your show but i am sick and tired of politicians saying that the american people are going to have to give up some things its going to be hard cuts let me tell you we the american people have given up more then we should have too we gave up are Jobs , paychecks,housing,and the almighty american dream i am not a democrat or republican i am an american what did the politicians in washington give up nothing we all have to suffer to help the economy well what about the A– Holes in DC they give up nothing and want the american working class to give up all of it what about the those that have money they just keep getting more breaks what about the people that actually pay taxes what do we get also its a shame that when we were on the verge of goverment shutdown they didnt want to pay the military what the hell is wrong with this country are men and women are fighting 3 wars to give the politicians the ftreedom to not pay them well thank you very much you dont want to pay them bring them home wwe are fighting a war here on our homefront on how to survive this mess politicians got us in then we wonder why other countries want to overthrow there government maybe we should do that at least we wont have to worry about millitary action against us they are all fighting somewhere else politicians better get off there ass and do the right thing its not always up to the seinors in this country WE THE AMERICAN PEOOPLE Thank you for listing Iam Proud to be an American for now but getting to the point where i dont know anymore

    April 11, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
  4. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Newt Gingrich lost to John Boehner because Newt wanted Boehner to shut down government by following his failed legacy. I give Boehner a lot of credit for not listening to Gingrich just like the rest of American isn't.

    April 11, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
  5. sarah brown

    I would just like to say that there have been plenty of times this past year that my family and i have struggled both with trying to get by and just dealing with living. I think that if the govt' should be concerned with the military , they should be concerned with everyone else. for instance, where i live you cant get a food order unless you have food stamps pending and if you cant get them or arent eligible tough luck. I also think that car companies have way too high expectations for themselves. for example, cars are not selling like they should. there are still 2010's on and befores on most lots that nobody can seem to afford to buy. waste of money and space. and houses that are being built and people having to foreclose and being forced to move is not ethical either. new homes should not be built unless others are bought and paid for because this is also wasteful. and credit cards should also be thrown overboard because interest rates are too high and aot of people cant afford them either. then people force themselves into bankruptcy and america ends up broke like it is now because no one can pay for everyone else's mistakes because simply put america is too greedy for themselves and doesnt realize we ourselves have done this and cant seem to fix this. its not fair to just blame the president, as we are all at fault. we should all pull together and fix this mess we've created.

    April 10, 2011 at 11:35 pm |