The Day After

What you have said I will consider. What you have to say I will with patience hear, and find a time Both meet to hear, and answer, such high things.

William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, Act I, Scene 2
The above quote came from a book that Leslie gave me for Christmas called Shakespeare on Leadership. It’s a collection of quotes from the Bard’s plays that the author uses to bolster contemporary theory on management and leadership.

This quote speaks to me because it is indicative of the stated willingness of the new occupant of the Oval Office to listen to many differing opinions and schools of thought before moving forward with a decision or strategy. I think it’s very unfortunate that we have to say this is a refreshing change from the last 8 years.

This quote also brings with it an air of caution; in the play, the above words are uttered by Brutus, not Caesar. It is perhaps a reminder of the evil that still exists, even amidst such a celebratory air as was witnessed yesterday.

I had to work on Inauguration Day, but I recorded the TV coverage, and last night watched a good chunk of it, including the Inaugural Address, while I was burning the whole thing to a DVD for Leslie. And yes, Rick Wagner, I recorded MSNBC, because Keith Olbermann makes me laugh and think at the same time. The same goes for Rachel Maddow, but she has the added advantage of being hot.

Ralph D’Andrea listened to the speech, and gave his favorite passage in a post yesterday. I enjoy the broad brush strokes of promise that a speech like this is supposed to provide, and President Obama (don’t you just love the sound of that?) didn’t disappoint. I prefer a little more substance at times, and this paragraph spoke to me the most:

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them – that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works – whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account – to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day – because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

I’m looking forward to these first few months; President Obama has indicated through his words and initial actions that he will get right to work, perhaps if not as much live up to many of his campaign promises as to get these things accomplished while the honeymoon is still going on.

In an era of what is potentially a period of significant political change, it’s likely unclear how long such a honeymoon will be. The President’s actions, to me, are indicative of an administration that is vital, youthful in its’ actions and approach, and capable of engaging stakeholders and average citizens alike.

It is up to us to make ourselves active participants in our own government, and therefore our own future and that of future generations.

Enough platitudes. This is my favorite TV piece related to the transition, and the President is expected to order it to happen tomorrow. Well, it may sort of go like this..

Today was eventful for other reasons as well. I had a staff meeting at work, and immediately after that got the call that Search and Rescue was needed for this lovely situation up on the Colorado National Monument. I’m a volunteer with the Communications Team, and there was certainly a lot of communicating to be done up there. We didn’t get back down until the late evening, and I missed calling Leslie because of it.

When I call her tomorrow morning I will tell her all about it, and also about what I was thinking about on the way back down. As I looked down on the city lights of Grand Junction coming off of the Monument, I was reminded of when she and I and her two daughters drove down from Glade Park after the movie last summer.

The beauty of the city lights below seemed to trivialize the challenges that we face individually and collectively every day, and reminded me tonight of how only by facing up to those challenges, taking risks when needed and exercising caution where necessary, can we truly achieve those things that God has gifted us with skill, faith, and courage to accomplish.

Let’s hope that our new leader, and those who assist him, can continue to engender the kind of feelings that were stirred up yesterday, and that so many of us felt as a community and a nation.

Have a blessed day.

Photo Credits: Gretel Daugherty, The Daily Sentinel
City of Grand Junction

This entry was posted in Government, Humor, Justice, Media, Politics. Bookmark the permalink.

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