Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image
Chris LoCurto

By

February 13, 2013

State Of The Union

February 13, 2013 | By | 36 Comments">36 Comments

As a leader or business owner I would like to ask this question, what is your thought of the State of the Union? If you watched last night, what did you think?

If you didn’t watch, what do you think anyway. How is your “State of the Union” as you or your business stands right now? I don’t care which side of the aisle you’re on, I would like to hear your thoughts, and your comments.

StumbleUponEmail
  • http://twitter.com/2ndLeicester Kathy Leicester

    I confess I don’t think I’m mature enough to watch without yelling at the screen, throwing my hands up in disgust, and deciding that there is no hope for us. Ever. That is something less than productive!

    The state of my union is spiritually solid as a rock, and the worldly stuff is terrific as well, and getting better. I was able to attend the Ramsey counselor training a couple of weeks ago, and it just terrifically life-changing. What a crew, honestly–the poured themselves into us for days on end.

    Our neighbors (perhaps you?) voted for the current administration, and that includes Congress. My neighbor is the one I need to engage, whether it’s with a political or economic argument (i.e., minimum wage laws are disastrous for the poor and the economy in general), or the idea that hard work and living on less than you make are excellent ways to move forward in life.

    So, that’s where my focus and energies will be directed–my neighbors. Even my virtual neighbors, such as you all. No more silence on my part.

    The best (of many comments / takeaways) from counselor training came from Chris Hogan, who said “We are not called to be comfortable; we are called to be effective.”

  • http://www.joshuarivers.net/ Joshua Rivers

    I was another person that didn’t realize it was on. I’m not disappointed that I missed it, either. I was busy taking care of my responsibilities instead of listening to someone give excuses why they can’t do theirs.

  • http://www.DavidASpecht.com/ David A Specht

    As a small business owner, I see the state of the union as “uncertain.” Each day that passes, we get wind of more and more regulations and requirements that many businesses simply cannot afford. Couple that with the reckless spending and growth of government and we have a recipe for disaster I think.

    That being said, my highest priority is to build our retained earnings to the levels Dave Ramsey teaches. That way, we can weather most any coming storm, at least for a decent amount of time.

    All the while, I am excited about the future of my company’s potential growth. We are poised to do some great things for our clients/customers/team members if outside forces don’t hamstring us.

    That’s what I mean by “uncertain.”

  • Ed Martin

    Still disappointed with every elected official in the room.

  • http://www.hardandsimple.blogspot.com/ Mark Sieverkropp

    I didn’t work. I sat by myself and said “blah blah blah blah” over and over again…I think I heard the same thing as people that tuned in.

    The state of the union in my life/business are great. Learning new things, taking on new responsibilities and looking forward to growing and growing and developing in 2013!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/teresa.duke2 Teresa Brien Duke

    I intentionally did not watch because I don’t like to hear plans to further destroy our country. I’ve also learned that he lies, so why bother?

  • http://www.janabotkin.net/ Jana Botkin

    Ummm, will this be considered controversial? Because all I have today is RUBIO FOR PRESIDENT!

  • Steve Pate

    The state of the what? To be honest i was more worried about the Michigan State vs Michigan game,(go Spartans) and a meeting I had last night at church. I didn’t even know it was on until late last night. Then after a few moment of thinking about it, I concluded “what’s going on in my house is fare more important than what’s going on in the white house.”

  • Dan O

    Chris et al.,

    I am curious to find out though, how far would you apply the QBQ principle and no-gossip policy when discussing national issues?

    It’s easy to complain to each other about what’s wrong with America because for the most part we agree that radical governmental change needs to happen. We’re in a bad state right now. I don’t think things are getting better; I doubt proposed policy changes will help that. However, I once heard someone who was pretty clever say that “Complaining is like vommit. When it’s done you feel better, but everyone else feels sick.” Does that apply when discussing national issues?

    • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

      I think it does. If we all do our small part, we will turn things around from the bottom up.

      • Steve Pate

        agreed!

    • http://www.hardandsimple.blogspot.com/ Mark Sieverkropp

      I think we need to discuss it, and we need to be informed, engaged citizens, but I dont think we should get so involved and caught up in it to the extent that we start thinking that our own lives depend completely on what someone does in the State or National Capitol!

    • Jaselyn

      I would say it applies in the sense that we need to take responsibility for the people that we’re electing to office and the kinds of conversations we start with people. The reason topics such as gun control and gay marriage have such high visibility during elections is because enough people started talking about them between elections. So if we’re frustrated about, say, the national debt and the national deficit, we need to start a lot of conversations with a lot of different people, both publicly and privately, to shift the focus onto real issues, and then we need to do our part to figure out which candidates really support our views and make sure that we have those conversations as well. But if we never do that, then it makes no sense to complain because we haven’t done our part to make things better.

      • Dan O

        Great point, Jaselyn!

    • http://www.joshuarivers.net/ Joshua Rivers

      I guess it depends. Are we just complaining about what’s going on (or not going on)? Are we too busy pointing fingers instead of pointing to solutions? Are we just talking, or are we trying to take some kind of action?

      Another thought – they are (supposed to be) civil servants. In other words, they report to us – not the other way around. We give them responsibilities to take care of, and their job is to fulfill those to the best of their ability. What would you think of a boss that approached a person under them that did not fulfill the responsibility given to them at that job? What if the boss just let it go?

    • Dan O

      Thanks for your responses.

      Would the QBQ for this scenario be, “How can I be proactive about changing the things I don’t like in government?”

  • http://thekevinedwards.com/ Kevin Edwards

    I only watched for a few minutes. However, I just can’t handle the same talk anymore. I am one that believes in honoring the position of president. I can’t even imagine the pressure that the position holds. I’m tired of the one side of the isle believing he is the Messiah and the other side thinking he’s the Antichrist. Our country is completely divided and as there is talk about bipartisan agreements, but there is no real bipartisan effort. The reason being is that each side violently disagrees with the other and there is no leader trying to bridge the gap. A friend of mine, by chance, ended up sitting next to one of Obama’s college roommates and dear friends on a return trip from India who was on the way to the inauguration. Among other things, my friend brought up how she believed that Obama was trying to turn American toward a more Euro-socialistic government. The response from the friend was the she was correct about her assumption. I was blown away, but at the same time not surprised. This is why we can’t have bipartisanship because it would require a complete compromise of values of both parties. It is all about agendas and no one is willing to budge.

  • Jaselyn

    I actually didn’t know it was happening last night until my friends and family starting tweeting and posting on Facebook about it. One conversation that I had with my aunt revolved around Obama’s call to raise the minimum wage to $9.00/hour to allow people to raise themselves out of poverty. I was an econ major in college, so the economist in me couldn’t comprehend how someone thinks that would be a solution.

    In my short 24-years on this earth, minimum wage has raised from $3.35/hour to $7.25/hour, but inflation has kept up and there really has been no real increase (in constant dollars it went from $4.44 (1996) to $4.97 (1996)). Jumping the minimum wage up to $9.00 isn’t going to stop inflation, and in fact will just facilitate increasing the cost of living because employers will have to raise the prices of their goods and services in order to cover the increase in wages they have to pay. (Source: http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0774473.html)

    Now, the people I work with are all straight commission salespeople, so it wouldn’t affect me, but for those of you with hourly employees, does this seem like an accurate assessment of what would happen?

    I honestly think the best solution is for people to stop expecting a minimum wage job to offer them livable earnings and start learning a more valuable skill so that they can get better jobs. That’ll leave more of the low-paying jobs open to teenagers so that they can learn the value of hard work and the importance of developing some sort of tangible skill.

    Those are just my thoughts on one aspect of the speech.

    • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

      Wow Jaselyn… For a ‘numbers-challenged” person like me, this is enlightening. Thanks! Also… quite surprised about “your short 24 years on earth”… I’ve been 24 for the past 16 years and there’s so much I don’t know, like inflation and minimum wage stats. Great stuff!!!

      • Jaselyn

        Thanks, Lily! I studied macroeconomics in college, so it’s kind of my default way of looking at stuff like this…

    • http://www.mattmcwilliams.com/ Matt McWilliams

      A $9.00 minimum wage won’t move people out of poverty.

      It will, however, move about 500,000 jobs to countries in which I need a passport to visit. That should help the economy. I’d love for someone to explain how that would help.

      I’m not naive and realize that some people are working minimum wage jobs and trying to support families. But most people working at that level are like I was when I made clost to minimum wage…teenagers grateful that someone would hire me to do anything. I wasn’t worth much more than $6.50/hour. But I learned a ton.

  • Fuchs

    I did watch, and it literally put me to sleep. Personally, Obama’s (everything is good!) talk, is getting really old. His old tactics of blaming everything on congress and nothing on leadership is getting really old. Claiming that stealing money from the rich will help rebound the economy and help social programs is getting really old. It’s all smoke and mirrors. As a country we are about to go bust, and he focuses his attention on the gun issue….. How about saving the lives of our future children by fixing our debt problem, otherwise our kids will be working for the Chinese government. They will no nothing of the word FREEDOM.

  • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

    As others, I chose not to watch. I had a meeting scheduled with the most important audience in my life to read “Goodnight Moon”. The State of the Union in our family is: we have two full-time jobs and two full-time kids. We are in charge of our family’s future, despite what the reports are that say otherwise. We are saving for retirement and building a college fund. We will pay our mortgage early. We buy what we can afford and we give where it’s needed. Our kids are learning the value of hard work and the value of money. Our 4 y-o knows that we can’t buy something if it’s not on sale, or if we haven’t saved for it. We are shaping this nation by raising kids this way and by trying to influence those around us through our actions. That’s all I’ve got.

    • Steve Pate

      Well said!! here here!

    • http://twitter.com/CabinetDoork Jeremy Carver

      You just solved our problems, Lily! This thing turns around in ONE Generation with parents like you!

    • http://www.hardandsimple.blogspot.com/ Mark Sieverkropp

      aaaammmmennn

  • http://caroldublin.com/ Carol Dublin

    I didn’t watch it but I can tell you that I’m a little concerned, based on the number of people requesting help at the nonprofit where I work. This is in one of the wealthiest counties in the country, and we’ve had a huge increase in the numbers of requests for help with food, utilities and rent, and not only that, but the requests themselves are more desparate. There are notes in files like that hours were cut or people were laid off and cannot find comparable work. Scary stuff. Yes, there are some success stories, but lots of need out there.

    • Steve Pate

      wow

      • Steve Pate

        I do mean that in a great “wow” and a question wow

  • http://jonahenry.com/ Jon Henry

    I was too busy working on my dream, man. That’s all I got.

    • Steve Pate

      hands down, the best answer!

  • http://www.mattmcwilliams.com/ Matt McWilliams

    Selfishly, my union is great. Income-wise, 2012 was by far my best year ever.

    I didn’t watch it though. Because I knew what I would hear:

    Political rhetoric, clapping from one side, blame, generic statement about the greatness of the American people, clapping from both sides, pointing out of a few individuals who represent in a dramatic way a large segment of the population who are getting screwed by evil corporations or some weird law or this or that.

    It’s been the same by both parties for years. I can do without it.

    My calculator showed that we, as a nation, went something like $1.2 Billion more in debt during the lead up to the speech and aftermath. That’s about $4.00 for every American. So basically that speech cost me ~$4.00. Fantastic.

    When my business was struggling years ago, I didn’t schedule a grandiose beauty pageant and speech to say all the things I hope might happen. We got down to business.

    Maybe next year, a leader will emerge from the White House with the guts to say, “We’re $17 Trillion in debt so I am going to spend the next few days trying to cut that rather than talk in front of the camera. See you in three years.”

    I am cautiously pessimistic about that ever happening though.

    • Steve Pate

      you got me a “beauty pageant”…..But that pessimistic/optimistic thinking can lead to some real change! The question is “How?”

    • http://www.hardandsimple.blogspot.com/ Mark Sieverkropp

      I wouldnt hold your breath for that person…but then again, maybe George Washington will show up…
      And side note, just think how much further along you’d be if you’d held a beauty pageant! ;)

  • http://twitter.com/CabinetDoork Jeremy Carver

    I chose to ignore the State of the Union last night. I believe watching would have been too dangerous for my hope levels. #NotWorthTheRisk
    Hope is fuel for the middle class. The State and fate of our Union rests in our heart, mind, and spirit.
    Hope.
    Encourage hope in others.
    Consider what is at stake if we lose hope.

  • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

    The state of my union…

    From a work/company perspective, I think it is good. Despite the economic challenges that seem to prevail for most of the country, we have built a solid team that is committed to going out and finding business. And we have an execution team that will get it done. I do think that this will be one of the more challenging years though when it comes to order intake. People are holding onto their money and their plans to build with tighter fists (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing for them).

    From a marriage perspective (union with my wife), it’s great, but there is always work to be done. We’ve been married for nearly 17 years. We cannot rest on our laurels.

    From a country perspective, I did not watch the state of the union last night, but I think we have a lot of work to do. While I recognize that we live in one of the best countries in the world, it seems like we’re heading in the wrong direction. When will our leaders start working together? When will they think about future generations? When will they learn to be responsible? You cannot continue to spend more than you have? Ignoring the debt is not the answer.

    That’s it for now!