A Call for Discipline, A Call for Service

Tuesday, January 20, 2009
A new era.

Not because the United States of America has a black president, although I recognize and celebrate that milestone.

Not because the most unpopular president in U.S. history has left the building, although I'm delighted that's the case.

It's a new era because our president, our new president, is a realist. He clearly sees the troubles facing us as a nation, and recognizes that the solutions to those problems will not come without a price.

That price may take the form of higher taxes. You can't have your cake and eat it, too - if you want additional services, they must be funded. That means we'll have to put more money into the kitty. There's no use crying about it - there are things that are wrong with this country that only the government can fix. And the government must be funded. So be prepared to pay more for the government services you receive.

The price may take the form of more discipline in our government spending. This means that some programs may be canceled if they can't prove their worth or provide sustainable results for the money invested. Regardless of whether you approve of the list of cut programs or not, something has got to go.

The price may take the form of public service. We simply can't be the best country in the world without some expectation of citizens contributing to the community in which they live. That means getting up off your ass and engaging in a little volunteerism and charity. Find a cause that touches you, whether it's kids, seniors, veterans, hunger, whatever - and donate some time and/or money to making the world a better place. It's good for you. It's good for us. It's just good.

The price may take the form of accountability. Whether that's prosecution for career politicians who broke the law, or financial restitution from those whose greed destroyed the economy, accountability is the cornerstone of leadership. One of the first tests of our new president's leadership will be how he chooses to handle accountability.

And the gift we receive for paying all these prices? Honor. Integrity. Service. Pride. Equality. Security.

I think it's worth it.

I'm ready.

4 comments:

The Mechanicky Gal said...

I'm right with you!

Keith Wilson said...

Many people razz the Canadian society for high taxes. But hey, I don't get a bill from the emergency room. You're right. The entire country needs the perverbrial kick in the ass. Start doing instead of complaining about what the government wants to do. Hard choices are necessary to fix this mess, (here as well), Obama can't do it alone, he needs the populous behind him. His leadership will fix this. Not just his policies.

I wish all Americans best wishes. A new era indeed.

Janiece Murphy said...

Thanks, Keith.

Hopefully we can make some progress on both sides of the border.

Jeri said...

I believe, too, that we all need to work at this - I'm really interested to see what the next six months holds.