As a result of decisions we have made as a society, since the end of World War II, a society of second class citizens has emerged. These Americans are not full participants in American enterprise. It would be accurate to say that they withdraw far more value than they contribute. Many of these men and women have effectively
disenfranchised themselves and why should we be surprised by this. These are Americans who receive a lousy education from a system of public education that is unable to meet their needs; have little or no access to healthcare to attend to their own medical needs as well as the needs of their families; and, if they are employed at all, they have low paying jobs with no eligibility for benefits and no opportunities for advancement.
This population is like a cancer growing in our body, sapping away our strength and vitality. There is a tipping point at which our nation will begin an irrevocable and unalterable decline.
That there is an equally large and growing population of retirees who are checking out of the game at an age from which they are likely to live another quarter of a century, adds greatly to this burden. It does not matter that these retiring men and women have worked hard for their entire lives to earn their Social Security, Medicare and pensions. These facts do not change the economic dynamics that make this population a burden to the Americans in the middle who must work harder to pay the bills. Fortunately, many of these men and women have invested well and their money is working for us even if they are not. The majority of these Americans, however, are dependent on Social Security and Medicare for their survival.
While both of these populations, on opposite ends of the age/productivity continuum create special challenges it is the first group of Americans about which we must be most immediately concerned.
We can neither continue to support this dependent population nor can we continue to enable their dependency and entitlement mentality. Neither can we ignore them; pretend they will disappear; deport them; or, otherwise rid ourselves of them.
The only answer, therefore, is to bring them back into the game as full functioning and productive members of our team, of American Society. Yes, I understand that this will not be an easy challenge to meet or goal to accomplish. The truth, however, is that if we do not find a way to shrink this population and pull them back into the game as contributing members, they will destroy us. The bottom line, then, is that we have no choice but to find a way to win them over to our side.
We can do this by:
1. Reinventing and re-selling the American Dream, and
2. Giving these Americans men and women realistic hopes that the dream can be real for them or, at least for their children.
We accomplish the first by using our unsurpassed talent for marketing and selling products and services. Only this time, we will be selling an idea in which people can believe and to which they can subscribe.
To achieve the second objective, we must re-invent our systems of education in such a way that we not only offer pertinent subject matter but also teach children how to succeed. We are not talking, here, about incremental reforms rather we are talking about a transformation. We must also transform our healthcare system to one that provides high quality, comprehensive healthcare and prescription drugs to all Americans at a price that we can not only afford but that will save trillions of dollars over the next decade.
Impossible, you say?
Accomplishing these things is not only possible it is imminently doable if only we use our imaginations to think exponentially and open our minds to the reality that anything we can imagine, we can do.
Given the extent to which China, Europe, Japan, India, and other developing nations are challenging our supremacy in the international marketplace, we have not a nanosecond to spare. This is clearly the categorical imperative of our time. We cannot continue to trudge down the dry and dusty paths of political dogma, conventional wisdom, or business as usual. We must demand that our elected representatives cease their paralyzing bickering and begin working together in what is a conflict of historical proportions in which the very survival of our nation and way of life is at risk. Never has our very survival as a nation been at greater risk.
You are urged to take this threat seriously and to make a commitment to change the direction our nation is taking. This blog, THE LEADerThinking Exponentially: Leadership, Education, and the American Dream, is here to serve as a catalyst to get people like you involved and to overcome the inertia that keeps people from doing what they know is right. This blog can support you but it is your leadership that will make a difference.
We will also offer articles on healthcare and education both of which, because of the minimal access to the former and the low quality of the latter, contribute significantly to the disenfranchisement of those whom we describe as virtual second-class citizens. Improving the quality of education and the quality, access, and cost of healthcare provide the best point of attack in bringing back this population of men and women who have lost their faith in the American Dream. We cannot invite them back on the basis of empty promises. We must give them real and demonstrable changes.
My book, Radical Surgery: Reconstructing the American Health Care System, published in 2002, addresses the challenges of healthcare and offers an achievable solution that is the antithesis of socialized medicine and that can save the American people trillions of dollars over the next decade.
My book, The Difference Is You: Power Through Positive Leadership will show the reader how every man and woman can be apply the power of positive leadership to bring about changes in the world in which they live and interact.
My book, Re-Inventing Education, Hope, and the American Dream, scheduled for release in a few weeks, recommends a very specific plan of action to re-invent education and to increase the level of commitment of parents to become partners in the education of their children. Changing these things will bring about dramatic changes in the motivation of our children to learn as much as they are able, as quickly as they can, according to each child’s innate abilities and interests.
My novel, Light and Transient Causes, is a story of just one possibility of what could happen in the U.S. if we are unable to address these issues effectively.
Please join me in this campaign by:
-Subscribing to this Blogs RSS feed.
-Following me on Twitter and LinkedIN,
-Encouraging your family, friends and associates to join you in this effort, and
-By applying the principles of positive leadership to help bring about a transformation of American society.
Remember the words of Jane Goodall:
“The most important thing you can do for the future of the world is to realize that what you do matters.”