A World In Turmoil: Dads, Let’s Step Up Our Game

Mar 12, 2011 by

Now we are living in the midst of one of the most prolific times in our history. 

Half the Arab world is at war or in protest.  The prices on everything are going through the roof.  Gas prices are nuts.  Inflation is beginning to be talked about regularly on the news.  Add to that the devastation to the Japanese through the 8.9 Richter Scale earthquake, the deadly tsunami that even affected the coast line of the United States, and now this whole nuclear reactor meltdown business. We are at war in Afghanistan.  We have a national debt that’s rising at a rate I’ll probably never make in my life time with every tick of the clock.  We have people in Wisconsin angry because their elected leaders are trying to trim back the costs of their state government because what’s going out, isn’t over pacing what’s coming in.  In Washington, we have gridlock unparalleled from what Admiral Stockdale blurted out in the 1992 presidential debates.  There are millions of people in the US who can’t find work.  Just as many and more who do not have health care.  And the list goes on.

Like our previous generations, when duty called, they stepped forward.

Today, more than ever, we need to do several things to do our part.

The first, pray.  It was 364 days ago that a situation in my own home crushed my dreams then of a happily ever after.  Today, with a client meeting in two hours and the prospect of being a part of an incredible change they are developing in the health care industry, life feels much better. God led me on a journey this past year that if I’d not endured, I’d not be having this meeting today.

The second, focus on your family.  Yes, the stress levels everywhere are rising.  But we’ve got to ensure we leave a legacy going forward that can also rise up to their challenges when the day comes for them.

And third, get involved.  Find someone in your life who you can assist.  Whether it’s a phone call, words of encouragement/support, a card, an unexpected check, whatever, right now is the time to help your fellow man, woman and child.  We must stay strong in this time.  We must apply common sense solutions and stop not thinking about tomorrow.  That kind of thinking has led to the kind of messes we’re in today.

Please, join hands.  We can make a difference.  We can prosper.  We can overcome.  And we can leave the world a better place for our children, no matter what gets thrown in our ways.

For us dads, it’s really time to step up our games.  There’s much to be done.

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Will 2011 be the year of political protests?

Feb 21, 2011 by

It looks like many, many people of the world have had enough.  Things are so volatile right now, seemingly mostly in the Mid-East, but even in the past five days, we’ve begun to see unrest in places like Madison, Wisconsin.

In the Arab world, from most media accounts, people are rising up in protest of the abuses their dictatorships have held them under for decades.  Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Libya, Bahrain and other countries each have had widely-reported clashes between citizens citing the need for change, and their rulers either ignoring them at first and leaving in the end, or sending troops into their masses and firing at will.

Behrouz Mehri/AFP/Getty Images

In America, in Wisconsin first, those protests have come because governmental leadership has said we can’t afford to keep doing all the things that we’ve come to rely on government to provide.  The global fiscal crisis, run-away logic of insuring pension plans that have had the bottom knocked out of them by this economy, have taken their toll.  The days of runaway government spending are over, or, they should be.  Far too many of our city, county, state and federal governments have been spending like there’s no tomorrow.  Sure, there are requirements in most US governments to have a balanced budget–excluding the federal government–but trying to put the brakes on is becoming hugely unpopular.

The Republicans are in a big pickle.  They’re trying to reign in government spending, and yet they’re pissing off the people who have become so dependent on that very spending.  Unions.  Don’t get me started.  Tenure for teachers.  Don’t get me started.  We’ve put in place so many protections that those who are the ones in many levels of government who need to go the most, can’t be let go without costly and time-consuming documentation and hearings and re-hearings.

So, on one hand, the US GOP is trying to reign in the spending and they’re going to take a big hit for this.  At the same time, Mr. Obama is trying to increase spending and play funny with the numbers.  What he’s strategically trying to do is make the US citizenry so mad at the Republicans for 2010, that they throw them all out, re-elect him and send a fresh new slate of Democrats to give him four more years of unparalleled runaway government spending.  Do you see the problem with that?  We can’t even afford what we’re doing now….

In other countries of the world, people are just yearning to be free.  Or free-er.  We’re arguing about spending more freely or tightening the belt to live within our means.

Makes you wonder where the next protests will be.  What happens when Hispanics from Mexico and South America have reached an even higher population level in the US than they have already?

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America: Egypt is calling, are we listening?

Jan 31, 2011 by

A very real, inspiring story of revolution and the human spirit is taking place daily in our world right now that can have long-term and incredible consequences and effects however it unravels.

Egyptian citizens are in their seventh day now of passionate, angry protests over the actions of their government.  Many have been killed in the protests.  Hundreds have been wounded by gunfire, fighting, etc.   President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt reorganized his government on Monday in the wake of all the upheaval.  That’s not likely to quell the spirits of the people who have lived under his dictatorish hands for 30 years.  They want him gone.  In the works is a March of Millions.  You think they aren’t focused?

Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

WAKE UP AMERICA

But the real story, if you’re listening here, is what happens when people have had enough of the government they’re living under and take it unto themselves to do something about it.

Indeed, 224 years ago yesterday, Jan. 30, 1787, Thomas Jefferson penned, “I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical. Unsuccessful rebellions, indeed, generally establish the encroachments on the rights of the people which have produced them. An observation of this truth should render honest republican governors so mild in their punishment of rebellions as not to discourage them too much. It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government.”

Given the way of American life and politics today, it’s hard to believe that 200-plus years ago, the same dynamics were playing out in America.   But in those days, obviously, there wasn’t 24/7 satellite news.  There wasn’t the Internet.  There wasn’t Twitter.  It’s unlikely that news of an event like this in Egypt would have even reached the shores of America at this point.

So in the midst of all the hype about Super Bowl XLV this coming Sunday, or the latest winter storm that’s beginning to trek across the country, it’s time to watch this fascinating, real life drama unfold.  Will democracy win out?  Will the will of a people be brought about?  Will Mubarik hang on to power?  Or will this all come crashing down in a way that leads to another Iranian type government, hostile toward the US?  Come Sunday afternoon, will it really matter which team won the Super Bowl this year in comparison to what took place in Egypt at the same time?  Seriously?

The Donald

All this is going on.  Donald Trump over on Newsmax said the turmoil in Egypt and other Middle East countries could raise the price of a barrel of oil as high as $200, but also could lead to the end of OPEC, which could lead to the dramatic lowering of the cost of oil.   Either way, Trump called the situation in the Middle East a “Tinderbox.”

“If you look at oil right now, it’s soon going to be $100 a barrel. Far too high. It’s set by OPEC. I think OPEC would explode with the Middle East and that wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world,” Newsmax.com reported.

The American Revolution

If only there had been cable news and Internet in 1776.   We’ve read some of the accounts, read poems like Paul Revere’s Ride, which largely didn’t happen the way it’s purported in the poem.  But that won’t happen in Egypt.  Yes, the government there proved it can shut down the Internet–an equally disturbing revelation–but they’re not able to stop the photo images that are being flashed around the world.  There’s an incredible human story being told.  Are you listening?  Are you watching?  Or are you more worried about what party you’re going to between Dallas and Fort Worth in the next six days?

And what of our own American government’s leadership.  Instead of taking a stand, we’re sitting on the fence waiting to see which way the political wind winds up blowing.  Such is our form of leadership today.  Sad.

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The Human Saga of the Egyptian Revolution of 2011

Jan 31, 2011 by

Editor’s Note: We do not normally repost articles from Mr. Claxton’s personal website, but this one has such far reaching business, political, public relations and economic impacts, we thought it was appropriate.

A very real, inspiring story of revolution and the human spirit is taking place daily in our world right now that can have long-term and incredible consequences and effects however it unravels.

Egyptian citizens are in their seventh day now of passionate, angry protests over the actions of their government.  Many have been killed in the protests.  Hundreds have been wounded by gunfire, fighting, etc.   President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt reorganized his government on Monday in the wake of all the upheaval.  That’s not likely to quell the spirits of the people who have lived under his dictatorish hands for 30 years.  They want him gone.  In the works is a March of Millions.  You think they aren’t focused?

WAKE UP AMERICA

But the real story, if you’re listening here, is what happens when people have had enough of the government they’re living under and take it unto themselves to do something about it.

Indeed, 224 years ago yesterday, Jan. 30, 1787, Thomas Jefferson penned, “I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical. Unsuccessful rebellions, indeed, generally establish the encroachments on the rights of the people which have produced them. An observation of this truth should render honest republican governors so mild in their punishment of rebellions as not to discourage them too much. It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government.”

Given the way of American life and politics today, it’s hard to believe that 200-plus years ago, the same dynamics were playing out in America.   But in those days, obviously, there wasn’t 24/7 satellite news.  There wasn’t the Internet.  There wasn’t Twitter.  It’s unlikely that news of an event like this in Egypt would have even reached the shores of America at this point.

So in the midst of all the hype about Super Bowl XLV this coming Sunday, or the latest winter storm that’s beginning to trek across the country, it’s time to watch this fascinating, real life drama unfold.  Will democracy win out?  Will the will of a people be brought about?  Will Mubarik hang on to power?  Or will this all come crashing down in a way that leads to another Iranian type government, hostile toward the US?  Come Sunday afternoon, will it really matter which team won the Super Bowl this year in comparison to what took place in Egypt at the same time?  Seriously?

The Donald

All this is going on.  Donald Trump over on Newsmax said the turmoil in Egypt and other Middle East countries could raise the price of a barrel of oil as high as $200, but also could lead to the end of OPEC, which could lead to the dramatic lowering of the cost of oil.   Either way, Trump called the situation in the Middle East a “Tinderbox.”

“If you look at oil right now, it’s soon going to be $100 a barrel. Far too high. It’s set by OPEC. I think OPEC would explode with the Middle East and that wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world,” Newsmax.com reported.

The American Revolution

If only there had been cable news and Internet in 1776.   We’ve read some of the accounts, read poems like Paul Revere’s Ride, which largely didn’t happen the way it’s purported in the poem.  But that won’t happen in Egypt.  Yes, the government there proved it can shut down the Internet–an equally disturbing revelation–but they’re not able to stop the photo images that are being flashed around the world.  There’s an incredible human story being told.  Are you listening?  Are you watching?  Or are you more worried about what party you’re going to between Dallas and Fort Worth in the next six days?

And what of our own American government’s leadership.  Instead of taking a stand, we’re sitting on the fence waiting to see which way the political wind winds up blowing.  Such is our form of leadership today.  Sad.

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