Power in Community

This is a quote from The Caucus, John Harwood.

“Stuart E. Eizenstat, a lawyer who is a veteran of the administrations of Lyndon B. Johnson, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, praised Mr. Obama for bringing to the task three critical elements of presidential leadership. The first two, he said, are high intelligence and the ability to connect disparate issues in a larger framework.”

I’m interested in the ability to connect disparate issues into a larger framework. Whether or not we are pro-Obama, we are living in a time where it seems like every other person has an axe to grind, and may not have clearly thought through the cause of the problem or the result if we fix it the way we want to. But we all know there are a lot of problems.

We are so accustomed to linear thinking in our culture, that we sometimes get the idea if everyone does one good thing at the same time, all the good things add up to a good result. Clearly not. If our economists had thought about the implications of their actions outside of their own circle of expertise we probably would not be reaping the results of their mistakes.

We also know there is more power in a group of people working for the same cause than in a bunch of separate people working for different causes. So, if we were to all do the most important good things together — that might bring a very much more satisfactory result.

But it is indeed difficult to think of them all together, so we are lucky to have a President who reportedly can do just that. Not that we should all follow lock step behind Pres. Obama. I have a few complaints myself. But it’s good to have someone up there who can connect the dots between our own enterprise and those of other people.

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