Faith Is a Comfort

The world is a scary place.

First, you are in search of a job and a career.  You known little about how to get along in the world and less about what it takes to be a success in it?

Your first job is at a factory making wire harnesses for Chrysler Trucks, and you succeed by drinking coffee from the coffee vending machine and, subsequently, becoming hyped up, to enable you to perform the assembly line function that you have been assigned.

The Time Study man comes to see you perform you duties…faster than they have ever been preformed…previously.

Your next job is a furniture store where your position is delivery of furniture and warehouse duties and the cleaning of the store.

The weight of many of the furniture and carpet rolls that you are asked to lift…is beyond you muscular capacity…yet you lift them.

You have a friend as well as your minister…who have succeed in sales.  You want desperately to follow in their footsteps.  You begin selling World Book Encyclopedias in Herrin, Illinois…door to door.  It is a difficult way to make a living.

You work, building your church, for nine months…without pay and almost no food.  You are hungry 24/7.

Your friend asks you to assist him in his carpet laying business.  He tells you that he will train you in order that you will be able to have your own carpet laying business. You love working with, Brent, he is a great boss!

You get a letter from Southern Illinois University that tells you that in view of your test score, that you are eligible for an interview with the Physical Plant, Building Services.

A month after the interview, that you felt very good about, you are hired as a Building Service Worker I.

You are able to pay the bills for your, four room house, that you recently purchased…and you buy a new Ford LTD two door automobile.

Over the years…you are promoted to a crew leader and then a foreman and then the Assistant Superintendent and finally the Superintendent of the department….that you had been hired into…so many years ago.

Your were passed over….and insulted…and looked down upon…and you never gave up.

‘Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.’    Hebrews 11:1   KJV

I recall when I was asked to be the Superintendent of Building Service..that the director told me what a fan of mine, Brad Dillard,  had said that I would be a hero.  I have never forgotten such a great vote of confidence.

So, is life handing you more than your share of lemons?

Do you wonder if anyone cares….or if anyone is watching?

Throughout my life I have experienced the hand of God and his guardian angels watching me and helping me through my most difficult moments.

I have also been surprised by the concern that my fellow humans had for me and their recognition of my struggles and the mountains that I was climbing.

My lifelong friend, Steve, and I were available for every church job that needed to be done…for many years.  At times, we commiserated as to what it was all for…and did anyone care…or notice.

There are always people watching what you are doing.  There is always someone noticing your sacrifice and your dedication…to your job…to your family….to your faith….and to your fellow man.

Do not loose hope!  Rather, take heart!

God is watching…and so are many likeminded people of goodwill!

 

 

 

Authenticity…Or…No More Mr. Nice Guy?

How often have you been spoken to by a supervisor or manager or politician or preacher…in a carefully scripted, word soup, of platitudes and rhetoric that was meant to leave you feeling good about the encounter…and understanding nothing?

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It is possible to be a kind and benevolent manager or leader and still be a candid communicator.

I had a chancellor, with whom I had met with on several occasions and for whom I was fond, speak to me in administrative double-speak and platitudes and I realized that he was lying to me…and he thought that I did not know it.

Suddenly, I responded to the chancellor and his assistant, that I was going to leave the meeting if they did not cease insulting my intelligence.  They both began to profusely proclaim that they thought me to be very intelligent!

There is an old saying, ‘do not pee on me and tell me that it is raining!’

Many times I have been spoken to, by my leaders, in illogical concepts and unrealistic expectations and lies, regarding simple policy issues…when the truth would have been so much easier.

I realized, very early in my supervisory/management tenure, that the staff that I had been asked to lead…were smarter than I and certainly could sniff out the malodor of a lie to them!

I had a supervisor, that I had to admonish to decide what statement on policy that he wanted me to communicate, from him, as he had told me two or more contradicting proclamations regarding the same issue.

I am convinced that one of the reasons that Donald Trump won the presidency was  the perception that he was speaking plainly to the American people.

This is something, so rare, in political speak, that many voters, voted for the president…in a desperate cry for change, from the soothing words of the political elite, of both parties, that consistently resulted in nothing more than a balm that was never applied to the wound.

In the, electorates’ thirst for a different political rhetoric…many voted for change…but it was change that hurt them economically.

Voters,  looked the other way on the issues of morality and misogyny and xenophobia believing the candidate understood them and was going to address their needs.  This being a billionaire that, often, failed to pay the sub-contractors, and others, that worked for him…middle class people.

Now, the reality of Trumps promises of help for the middle class and the juxtaposition of his policies…such as the tax plan and tariffs and, even, the erosion of Obama Care…have all hurt the very voters that selected him for their champion.

But, the hunger was so great for a politician that spoke differently than the crowd of candidates…Trump was elected.

In the workplace I have witnessed supervisors and managers and administrators who wanted to be Mr. Nice Guy to everyone and appeared to be running for a popularity contest.

It is impossible to ‘please all of the people…all of the time’.

It is imperative that a leader must be a good communicator.  The members of your staff must know what you expect and your plan for implementing and delivering those expectations.

I have often witnessed leaders who made management decisions by peer review.  In other words…a manager that disciplined a team member according to what their peers had criticized.

I experienced, during my twenty-five years of management that it was a person’s co-workers, much more often that their supervisors, that sought disciplinary actions for what they decided were infractions…but they never reported on their own breaking of the rules of the organization.

However, management that is done properly will result in private constructive criticism and disciplinary actions and, finally, terminations when all else fails.

A leader must be able to ensure that they understand the facts of poor job performance properly and that the evidence is clear.

For effective leadership, it is paramount that a leader addresses poor job performance in an authentic and forthright manner.

I found that, when I had a supervisor, who was a poor leader, that the morale of their entire crew was diminished.

It was my experience that, many times, a private meeting with a person who needed counseling, was all that was required and the problem was rectified.  Most of your colleagues want to produce an excellent work product if they are spoken to honestly and the expectations of the manager are clear and concise.

Always constructively criticize in private and praise in public.

However…nothing is more demoralizing than two people…and one is working faithfully…while the other is faithfully not working.  This problem is compounded, by the number of staff who report to a manager or supervisor…who leads by favoritism or emotional whims.

My old friend and mentor, Jerry R., told me, close, to the conclusion of my career at SIU, that I had always been fair.

I believe that whether you have a person who reports to you or hundreds…they are looking for one attribute of your character…above all others….fairness.

My management philosophy was that if I ere in disciplinary actions…that I wanted to err on the side of mercy….

However, negative, corrective, and disciplinary actions are a vital component of positive management.

 

 

Respect

After many years in both union and supervisory and management positions, I learned one, primary, lesson, and that is we all crave respect.

From the janitor to the chancellor to the president…all of our work has value.

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I was asked, recently, if I thought that I had the answers to a dysfunctional department.  I responded that I did have the answers and that I was confident of the basic precepts that should be implemented to enliven hope…where there is despair.

First, all staff must be treated fairly.  For instance, if temporary promotional upgrades are distributed…they should be distributed, only, on the basis of demonstrated ability.  If you have never given a candidate a chance to demonstrate their ability…how do you know how to evaluate them?

Second, a, valued member of the staff, must must be consulted as to the needs of their shop and the challenges that they are facing in implementing the unfunded mandate that management has given them to fulfill.

I have been saying, for over thirty years, that issues, both large and small, including the critical issue of the recruitment and retention of students, at SIUC, by and large, can be alleviated by administration consulting with the civil service staff of the campus.

For instance, the Building Services organization is broken into many crews that are headed by a crew leader and who have on that crew both Building Service Workers and student custodial staff.

If you want to know and understand what works in the buildings that a housekeeping crew is assigned…ask them?

Third, an unequal treatment by management, of staff…can be seen a hundred miles away.  When two employees are both working hard and dedicated to the cause of the organization…and one has great voice and influence while the other has none…you have problem of unfairness.

Fourth, is the all to human, mistake of favoring those who seem to like the boss.

When I was working and my foreman would bring me stories regarding the criticisms that members of their crews had leveled against me…I asked them to not disclose any negative comments that were heard about me…unless they were attempting to get me fired or murdered.

I took great pride in promoting people who I knew were critical of me.  Often, I received the criticisms as constructive and I endeavored to change.

When you have favorites…you can not hide it!

One of my foreman told me, many years ago, that she could not tell who was my friend and who was my enemy…by the manner that I treated them…and that it appeared to her…that I treated my enemies a little better.

Fifth, resources from administration is not only important…it is imperative!

Once administration has decided what level of service that they can afford to deliver to the campus…they must be dedicated to providing the appropriate resources to accomplish their goal.

Support and backing and ‘being there for a department’ equates to two things.  The first is financial resources.  If an administrator supports a department they will provide the money to ensure that the department does not disintegrate into chaos.  Also, an administrator will spend the time that is necessary to learn what is going on in the, troubled, department and will hear the opinion of the majority of the participants.

‘The best management takes place where the work is being done.’

If a department is to be effectively run…the manger of that department should be a frequent visitor to the various job sites.

Many years ago, there was a saying that was posted in the Old Fire House…which was the offices of Building Services…that said…’We must inspect…what we expect.’

If your management philosophy is developed and implemented…behind your desk…you will be a failure!

Sixth, communicate….communicate….and….communicate!

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If you do not communicate a clear and consistent vision of what you want the department that you have been selected to lead…no one will identify with you…or connect to your plan.

Seventh, learn and believe and know….from you heart…that it is an honor to be asked to lead a department…and if you are humble…you will learn much more than you will ever impart….to your dedicated and professional colleagues.

Your staffs; faith, personal views and life, politics, and all other matters that are not directly job related…are none of the managers business.

A managers bias and prejudice and judgements that are based on paranoia or lack of self confidence…must be left at home!

A manager must understand that some of their colleagues are not going to like them…that is human.

A manager must understand that some of their colleagues are going to criticize them…that is human.

A manager must understand that not only do they not have all of the answers…but that they have staff who are smarter than they are and who have abilities that they do not posses…learn from your staff!

A leader inspires confidence by being a member of the team.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autumn Delights!

My favorite time of the year is fast approaching…and you can already feel it in the air!

The Fall Equinox begins, Saturday, September 22 at 8:54 PM, Central Standard Time.

The Fall of the year is a time of renewal for me…and it always has been.

I was hired at Southern Illinois University on October 10, 1978…and it was a great day in the lives of the Brooks family.

I, vividly recall, the crisp and cool afternoon that I began working at the University.  I could not believe my good fortune…and I realized…on the first evening that I worked…that my life had changed…for the better.

I always suffered from some trepidation, when promotions came my way.

I cold see an opportunity to become a crew leader, which in those days was titled a Building Custodian. and my ultimate goal was to become a Building Service Worker III…which was a, foreman, or the manager of several Building Custodians and their housekeeping crews.

However, when the Assistant Superintendent position was offered to me…I initially refused it…but finally accepted due to my respect for, Ray P., the Superintendent…at the time.

I had been interviewed for the Assistant position, by the Assistant Director of the Physical Plant and the Superintendent of Building Services and the bulk of the interview consisted of the Assistant Director criticizing my job performance as a foreman.  The criticisms of my performance were trumped up charges and actually belonged to my colleague, who was a friend of the Superintendent.

Now, it would seem that I was not a real candidate for the position…but in reality…I was the candidate for the position…if I wanted it.

I arrived at home in the early morning hours…and remained awake through out the night until my wife arose the following  morning.  She told me that if I did not want the position…I should decline it.

I did just that…but I acquiesced

when I saw the pained look on Ray’s face…and I knew that the position was one that I should endeavor to succeed in.

I am glad that I did.

We moved to Eldorado, Illinois in the Fall and the air was chilly and soon cold.  Dad had to lay fire in the four or five fire places that were throughout the house.

When I was getting ready for first grade at Hillcrest School…it was cold enough to see your breath.

We sat on the front porch, on Friday nights, and watched the Eldorado Eagles, high school football team, play…with, the legendary, Boz Adams, as their coach.

I dropped my pencil in Mr. Adams Health class…and he assigned me 250 lines to write…many years later.

My birthday, along with my lifelong friend Steve, is on the 24th of October.  Close to Halloween…which might explain my love for monster and scary movies.

Thanksgiving is a big event in our home.  It is Mary Jane’s favorite holiday of the year.

When I was a child…I watched the Macy’s Day parade…and that was about it…as Mom was focused on preparing for Christmas.

For the past 30 years, Mary Jane, has prepared Thanksgiving Dinner at our house and we have our family attend…to enjoy the fellowship and the joy of the holiday season with us.

I retired, after 32 years and 2 months and 3 weeks…at the conclusion of 2010…close to Christmas…which is my favorite holiday.

Ultimately I became the superintendent of the department, that I had first entered as a janitor, and the job was offered to me as a take it or leave it proposition…or perhaps, the administration indicated, that they would…just…contract the housekeeping department…which would result in all of us loosing our good jobs.

Once again, I took the challenge…and was determined to not allow an administrators lack of confidence in me…be the flag that I flew!

I am glad that I did.

I love Autumn and all of the rich memories that it stirs up…much as an inviting campfire.

 

 

 

Avoid Detours on the Road to Beauty

An important message from my son, Jonathon.

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Life is a magnificently beautiful ride. I have so much to live for and to enjoy. I live for stories, my wonderful friends and family, a rich social life, a good job and so much more. The beauty of life is all around us each every new day.

But do we all see the beauty? Honestly, there are many detours in this world that can obstruct one’s eyes from seeing the beautiful stuff. The two deadliest diseases I’ve ever battled are sin and bipolar disorder. These are the worst detours I’ve experienced that stole beauty from my eyes and soul.

I was reading earlier today that it’s National Suicide Prevention Week. In the past I’ve read that thirty to forty percent of people with bipolar commit suicide. In a perfect world there would be no sin and no mental illness. Since I don’t live in a world like that I’ve…

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Do Leaders Understand…How Hard Their Staffs Work For Them?

I have been a follower…all of my life.

I have been a leader…much of my life.

Often I have observed the caviler attitude that leaders have toward their followers or their staffs.

I enjoy and am confident in the many improvements that Building Services was able to facilitate, during my tenure as a manager for twenty-five years, and I know that nothing would have been gained without the yeoman like work of my colleagues in the department.

I have know many people…and I know people…that are dedicated to the betterment of Southern Illinois University…on a 24/7 basis.

Do you realize how extraordinary this is…in this world that is often marked by cynicism and narcissism?

Prior to my retirement, I had dedicated staff that would work around the clock, if I called on them to ensure that our department was able to perform its mission in an excellent manner.

This is an awesome and weighty responsibility!

I have said for forty years…that SIUC has the most dedicated staff in the state and, most likely, the nation!

When I sat in meetings and when I received compliments regarding our service to the University…I always said that it was my unparalleled colleagues that enabled our department to reach the heights of proficiency that we were able to obtain.

When I heard supervisors or administrators or union leaders…disparage or cast aspersion on the staff of our department…I rebuked them…and told them that the dedication of our staff was the only reason that we still had a job and that we were vital to the recruitment and retention of our students….because of our totally committed colleagues!

I wonder do administrators and managers and supervisors and chancellors and presidents…understand the…total immersion and dedication and life sacrifice…that the civil service staff have for the success of our precious students and our University?

It is so easy…to say…what a good boy or good girl am I…but you must not forget the countless dedicated and striving colleagues that are working around the clock…to ensure the success of the University…and your success!

 

 

 

Mind the Gap!

On my first trip to London I was intrigued with the signage and recoded warnings, on the underground rail, commonly referred to as the ‘Tube’, to ‘mind the gap.’

 

There really is a significant gap between the train and the loading platform, a foot or more, and to slip into the gap…could be very troublesome and perhaps deadly.

Having not grown up with subways or ‘tubes’ I find them a little disconcerting.

When we traveled, throughout the United Kingdom and France I regularly felt ill at ease in the underground waiting areas.

The idea of standing directly next to the wide chasm that is the tracks for the locomotive and my fear that some, poor soul, might topple over…was real.

Also, I found the popular means of conveyance a little spooky…late at night…when there were few people waiting for their ride…and they were staring at my party of holiday revelers.

I remember, when we were riding with our friends, Margo and Jeff, in Paris, and a gentleman, who had a violin on his back, became angry when he thought one of us had pushed him.

I wondered if I was going to have to fight to defend my friends honor?

Life is somewhat like the ‘Tube’!

First, there is a labyrinth of confusing directions, posted, as to what train will take you to the stop that you desire…and you need an interpreter to decipher them for you.

Second, there is a wide and dangerous chasm that you must stand next to and remain aware of what danger that the next step could bring to you and your life and limb.

Third, once your train has arrived…you must ‘mind the gap’ or you still could be injured…badly.

Fourth, you must be in constant vigilance as to who your fellow riders are…while at the same time…being open and accepting to all people.

Fifth, you must do your best to not disturb anyone else’s violin!

‘Small, crafty, cowering, timorous little beast,

Oh, what a panic is in your breast!

You need not start away so hasty

With your hurrying scamper

I would be loath to run and chase you,

With murdering plough-staff.

I’m truly sorry man’s dominion

Has broken Nature’s social union,

And justifies that ill opinion

Which makes you startle

At me, your poor, earth born companion

And fellow mortal!

I doubt not, sometimes, but you may steal;

What then?  Poor little beast, you must live!

An odd ear in twenty-four sheaves

Is a small request;

I will get a blessing with what is left,

And never miss it.

Your small house, too, in ruin!

Its feeble walls the winds are scattering!

And nothing now, to build a new one,

Of course grass green!

And bleak December’s winds coming,

Both bitter and piercing!

You saw the fields laid bare and wasted,

And weary winter coming fast,

And cozy here, beneath the blast,

You thought to dwell,

Till crash!  The cruel plough passed

Out through your cell.

That small bit of heap of leaves and stubble,

Has cost you many a wary nibble!

Now you are turned out, for all your trouble,

Without house or holding,

To endure the winter’s sleety dribble,

And hoar-frost cold.

But little Mouse, you are not alone,

In proving foresight may be vain:

The best laid schemes of mice and men

Go often askew,

And leave us nothing but grief and pain,

For promised joy!

Still you are blessed, compared with me!

The present only touches you:

But oh!  I backward cast my eye.

On prospects dreary!

And forward, though I cannot see,

I guess and fear!’

To a Mouse by Robert Burns

 

 

Mary Jane and I met a friend at the grocery store, yesterday, and we commiserated on the vagaries of life.

Our friend commented that Life was interesting.

I said that you never know what is coming next…as Forest Gump said…’Life is like a box of chocolates…you never know what your are going to get.’

And, so, boredom is not the problem…rather the challenge is to be prepared to address the curve balls that life throws at you…and believe that it is part of Gods master plan.

There is a saying that is often quoted regarding the uncertainty of life, ‘man makes plans…and God laughs’.

I have often found the idea the God is laughing at my struggle in the darkness of life and its mission and my purpose in it…to be a little insulting.

I prefer to think that each of us have a guardian angel and that our angel is with us, daily, and is keeping us…from the gap.

 

 

 

 

 

Remembering Friends

I posted, on Facebook, a couple of photos of Plant and Service Operations…where I spent 32 year and 2 months and 3 weeks…or my total career at Southern Illinois University.

Not that I was counting.

I was overwhelmed with the people that liked the posting and a couple who commented.  My friend, Michelle, who is the SIU Alumni Association Executive Director, wrote a comment that, ‘It was a pleasure to know and have worked with you’, and it just made my day!

I was honored that Michelle remembered me and pleased that she had a favorable impression of me…as I had of her.

I was, highly impressed with her ability and I hoped that she would advance in the University System…and I am so pleased that she has.

How nice of her to take the time to say a kind word to an old and retired acquaintance and to lift my spirits and cause me to reflect on some lovely conversations that we had during the days that Building Services assumed the custodial duties of the, sports venue for SIUC, the Arena.

And, then, my old boss, Brent, and my friend of many years wrote a, very, kind comment to me, ‘My only regret is that we did’t meet until 15 years into our 32 year tenure.  You were a great example to so many employee!  It was a pleasure and an honor to work with you!’

Now, Brent, was one of the nicest people that I ever reported to.  I regularly met with him once or more times per day…and he never seemed to not have time for me.  He was so gracious, as a member of his staff, that I felt like he was my colleague.

Brent had some of the best people skills that I had ever witnessed…and I am honored to call him my friend.

I noticed…with some amusement…that once I announced that I was retiring at the conclusion of 2010…and my replacement was named two months prior to my final day…that many seemed to not be so interested in interacting with me…or to seek my opinion.

I suspected that this would be the case…but it was a little disappointing.

However, I could see, in the eyes, of those who came to my retirement reception and the weeks prior to it….that they were going to miss me…and I knew that I would miss them…desperately.

I was so honored when my friend, Winton, wanted to be my Facebook friend.  He and I continue to communicate…through that venue…and I value his opinion, very much.

My friend, Steven, recently became my Facebook friend…and I was honored.

And, then, of course, there is Jamie and Chris and Tish…and I think of them regularly.

I hear from Bill V….and I am always delighted!

My friends, Ryan and Elizabeth, stay in touch with me on a regular basis…and it is an elixir to my retirement years.

And there is dear Cyndy, who has so much ability, and at times, is under-appreciated, and she has such a beautiful and open heart!

During my years of service to SIUC…I was so involved with the needs of my staff…that when I retired…I felt that I had let them down.

I remember, Casey, and how I worried about her success…and the evening that I got her an Oreck vacuum…and her surprise and delight…and she hugged me in the joy of the moment.

Jonathon told me that, recently, he had been talking with, AntonyF., and Anthony had told him that his laugh reminded him of someone else, me, that laughed that way.  I remember what a gentleman that Anthony was and how I enjoyed our conversations.

And, then, there is my old friend, Brad Dillard, who I admire.  Brad is a director that cares for his employees and works, tirelessly, to make them all feel an, integral, part of the organization.  During Brad’s, short tenure as director, he has inherited significant budgetary challenges and yet he meets them with care and concern and a focus on his staff.

I often, examine, if I understand how much, ancillary, influence that I have on others lives?

How often does a kind word of remembrance or reflection…lift the spirits of another…and we do not, fully, realize the affect that we have on our fellow human family members…as we travel this winding and circuitous road of life?

 

 

 

A Balanced Life

One reality that I have learned, since I turned 60, life goes quickly.

I retired at the conclusion of 2010, nearly eight years ago, and it seems like yesterday.

I was reading my friend, Margo’s, blog and was reminded of the beauty and mystery of London.

During our trip to the United Kingdom, in 2016, we had the opportunity to visit London as well as several cities in the U.K.

In the blog entitled, A Bit About Britain, I was transported to Oxford, England, where we spent a couple of days and where I felt that I had been there before?

The history of Oxford and the spirits of the past…are compelling and it is a location that I could spend a year in…at least.

When I was working at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, I was so thankful for the opportunities that were afforded me…that I could not spend enough time there.  I regularly worked ten and twelve hour days and weekends and holidays…and on many occasions I was there for a full twenty-four hours.

You may take note…even now…many of my writings are about or include SIUC.

But, I longed for a more balanced life.

Simply put, life is much more than working for a living.

Family is the most lovely ingredient in a balanced life.  Nothing has ever been more important to me than my wife and my two sons and their happiness and fulfillment and joy.

Faith, has always been an integral part of my life and purpose.  Faith is something to be lived…daily…not talked about incessantly.

Travel has been important to me since I was a teenager.  Former president Nixon advised parents to take their children on as many travel adventures that they could possibly afford…as there was no better education and enrichment for young people than experiencing new places and people and customs and traditions.

The Arts are vital.  Literature and reading and theatre and painting…are the expressions of life!

We are all human and endemic with that reality is the overall health of both our minds and our bodies.

Over my retirement years I have noticed the health issues that I have that are consistent with my obsession for excellence at SIU…and my constant concern as to the university’s welfare.

All of us need and require sleep.  If you are not getting enough…you are doing damage to your mental and physical faculties.  Adults require eight to ten hours per day in order to function at their maximum potential.

All of us need quiet time…as our kindergarten teacher understood…so many years ago.

All of us need love and appreciation for our efforts…we all want to know that we matter to somebody.

All of us desire to be understood and appreciated for our uniqueness.

All of us want to participate in the betterment of something that is bigger than ourselves.

It pays to step back and contemplate…and consider…from time to time.

We want to be able to have it all and do it all and be the ‘all in all’ that our family and employer and friends and organization and society…tells us that we should be.

Often…to do it all and to be everything to everyone is debilitating and mentally and emotionally exhausting…and is a prescription for disaster.

We can do it all…over the years…but not…all at once.

 

Warning

‘In mid-September 1930, the reports of Germany’s elections were pouring in, the big news item was the gains made by the Nazi Party.  The group that had received so much press recently had acquired 6.4 million German votes.  This allowed the Nazis to increase their number of seats in the German Parliament from 12 to 107 leaving them second only to the Socialist, who had 143 seats.’

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‘With nearly a 900% increase in parliamentary power, the headlines in Britain were ‘Sweeping Fascist Success.’

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‘Early in the next month, Hitler gave an interview with The Times n which he explained that the Nazi Party had made itself, ‘the second strongest party in the Reich.’  Hitler assured the interviewer that, ‘We will conquer political power by strictly legal means.’

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‘Churchill was following the news coming from Germany in detail and remained unconvinced.  On October 19,1930, he met with Price Bismarck at the German Embassy to discuss current events.  When the topic of Hitler and the Nazi Party arose, Churchill acknowledged Hitler’s declarations that he had not intention of waging a war of aggression, however, as the Prince noted, Churchill ‘was convinced that Hitler or his followers would seize the first available opportunity to resort to armed force.’    Historian On The Warpath

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Bob Woodward has written a new book about the Trump Whitehouse entitled, ‘Fear’,  that is to be released September 11.  Mr. Woodward is a highly respected journalist and author and is of world wide fame for he and his colleague, Carl Bernstein, Washington Post articles regarding the Watergate scandal that resulted in the resignation of President Richard Nixon.

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Excerpts from the up-coming Woodward book are critical of the President.

‘Mr. Woodward used several defense-related meetings to illustrate the president’s problem grasping his own administrations policy, including a July 2017 gathering at the Pentagon between Mr. Trump, military brass and members of his cabinet.’

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‘When are we going to start wining some wars?’  Mr. Trump groused as those around him tried to clarify the purpose of the war in Afghanistan.  ‘We’ve got these charts. When are we going to win some wars?  Why are you jamming this down my throat?’

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‘Mr. Trump attacked the generals and cabinet members in the room, leaving Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson exasperated.  He’s a ‘moron, Mr. Tillerson reportedly said once Mr. Trump had left, using an expletive.’

‘At a January meeting of the National Security Council, Mr. Trump asked why the United States was spending so much on the Korean Peninsula.’

‘Defense Secretary Jim Mattis replied that the administration was trying to prevent World War III.  After Mr. Trump left the room, Mr. Woodward wrote, Mr. Mattis told people that Mr. Trump understood the topic like a ‘fifth or sixth grader.’    The New York Times

It goes without saying that the people who are quoted…are Republicans…and they accepted a position in the Trump administration….as a role of service to our nation.

Today a New York Times article entitled, ‘I am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration’, was written by a high level Trump staffer.

An excerpt from the article says, ‘To be clear, ours is not the popular ‘resistance’ of the left.  We want the administration to succeed and think that many of its policies have already made America safer and more prosperous.’

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‘But we believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic.’

‘That is why Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Mr. Trump’s more misguided impulses until he is out of office.’

‘The root of the problem is the president’s amorality.  Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.’

‘Although he was elected as a Republican, the president shows little affinity for ideals long espoused by conservatives: free minds, free markets, free people.  At best, he has invoked these ideals in scripted settings.  At worst, he has attacked them outright.’

 

‘In addition to his mass-marketing of the notion that the press is the ‘enemy of the people,’ President Trump’s impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic.’    New York Times

So, we have been warned.

Perhaps…the making fun of and belittling of a disabled person…was not enough?

Perhaps…the, almost 20 accusations of sexual harassment and sexual assault….were not enough?

Perhaps…the recorded assertions of candidate Trump…that due to his being a star he could…sexually assault women….was not enough?

Perhaps…the president’s assertion that there were good neo-nazis, in Charlottesville,…were not enough?

Now we have warnings from both Mr. Woodward’s book, Fear, and, frightening, warnings from a high level…and Republican…staffer of the president.

Do you really accept that everyone that criticizes the current president…is fake news?

Do you accept that when a Republican takes issue with the president…that they are lying and a promulgating of falsehoods and fake news?

Our president asserts that the anonymous author of the New York Times Op Ed piece…is a TRAITOR…according to his tweet.

Do your…really…want to live in a country that to criticize the head of the executive branch of the government…who was elected by the people…is termed a ‘TRAITOR’…by that elected leader who is one of three equal branches of the United States government?