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America’s Odyssey for Sage Leadership

Rising star. Celebrity. Momentum. Trajectory.

These words have entered into our society’s vernacular as modern day prerequisites for achieving powerful positions. Specifically, political leaders on both sides of the aisle have followed this dynamic in pursuing what is presumed to be their “yellow brick road” to success and stature.

The question is where is that wicked witch hiding, ready to spoil the sunny ceremony?

There is no doubt there are some young, intelligent mayors, governors and congressional leaders around the country and in D.C. who have the potential to get elected to higher office in the coming years. However, will the results of an electoral victory paint a masterpiece in the making or reveal more of an illusion?

Regarding policy, there are a few exciting representatives and senators (it was very strange to write that, by the way). In this sense, “exciting” equates to big ideas and energy that a select few congressmen and congresswomen are bringing to the multitude of policy debates in our nation’s capital, as well as in state legislatures around the country.

And yet, there is an important distinction between discussing big ideas with widespread media attention and implementing and achieving success from big ideas. It’s the “talk the talk” versus the “walk the walk” paradigm.

The American people have heard all the talk (the mute button has overused it purpose), but now it’s time for some walking. It’s time not only in terms of leadership, but also electorally defeating specific political leaders and watching them walk away.

“[He or she] is a rising star within the ______ Party!”

Do you want to know what a rising star is? A rising star is a star that hasn’t yet made it to the “big show” in the gorgeous night sky of infinite grandeur. It has yet to reach its permanent place and is not prepared to steadily guide anyone lost who looks up to it for direction. Polaris, or the North Star, is always situated in its place, visible for anyone to see and rely upon. This glistening wonder in the darkest of nights is always ready to serve whenever needed.

“[He or she] has become an absolute celebrity in the ______ Party!”

Whether the problems revolve around debt, jobs, tax code overhaul, foreign policy (U.S.) or laying down a solid foundation for a broken city dragged down by poverty and crime (Newark, N.J.) or shutting down the government to defund Obamacare without the Senate majority and White House (a few GOP Senators) or reviving an entire state that has nearly incomparable sources of cash flow and natural beauty that have been spent/taken for granted (California), the country is yearning for experienced leadership and vision.

In other words, people are searching for trust. People, I will venture to say, want someone who is a master of politics, but who thinks and operates above that “messy swamp.”

People want a distinguished sheriff, not a hot shot cowboy.

In these upcoming elections, we need to ask the candidates (repeatedly) what concrete successes their policies have produced? What did they say were their ideas, how did they implement what they said they would and what were the outcomes? How do the outcomes apply to solving our current dilemmas?

We’ve seen plenty of flash, we’ve had plenty of celebrities and we’ve strained our necks from looking up at rising stars. Admittedly, I’m a fan of some of these rising stars. However, most all of them are still rising and have not yet earned a spot in the night sky of stars composed of firm power, imagination and certainty.

Trust > Trajectory.

We’ve endured a president who was a rising star and celebrity. How many of you trust him or the federal government he’s leading not to violate your privacy or to provide valid ideas to improve our lagging economy to create quality jobs or to project strength through his foreign policy?

Trust > Trajectory.

P.S. It’s usually rising stars who are too preoccupied with their own personal ambitions to answer a 3 a.m. phone call…or a phone call with dire warnings in the middle of the afternoon months before a heart-wrenching catastrophe.

Personal responsibility sure is a lost art from those who have been given the all-powerful paint brushes of America’s ever-changing masterpiece…or tragedy, depending on the artists.