Most Americans would agree – as would observers beyond our borders who closely monitor the U.S. scene – that the level of incivility in the U.S. is at an extreme pitch. Were Dale Carnegie to issue a modern-day sequel to “How to Win Friends and Influence People”, the prologue might well include the advice to avoid any conversation of a political nature. Family and friends have been torn asunder by divisions that, once suppressed in the spirit of keeping world (or, at the least, dinner table) peace, are now featured like a badge of honor. The shield is worn proudly, conveniently satisfying the human desire for association and affiliation by aligning with the political party/candidate/issue of choice.
As I thought about my patriotic responsibility to, in some small way, unify otherwise disparate perspectives, I wondered long and hard about where bipartisan support exists beyond a theoretical framework. Our upcoming Memorial Day celebration is intended to honor the courageous and selfless acts of Veterans from all disciplines of our military service, and that is certainly a tribute all Americans proudly rally around. With Memorial Day as inspiration, and after pondering the topic for thirty seconds, the current state of global financial disequilibrium spoke to me an indisputable truth: (Too Much) Money Changes Everything, and politicians of every persuasion – campaign rhetoric be damned – love to spend, spend, spend. Other People’s Money (OPM) may have been monetized on Wall Street, but its popularity was borne and still sails mightily on the shores of the Potomac. Traditions die hard, if at all…and the propensity to spend is one the right and left have agreed to agree on.
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