“You’re good enough, you’re smart enough, and, doggone it, people like you” – Stuart Smalley
Al Frankin’s spoof on the power of positive thinking is an all-time great moment for fans of Saturday Night Live. It was great parody.
Sometimes people take the issue of self empowerment to dangerous levels where one thinks he or she can will a specific outcome just by thinking positive thoughts. If this was the case, we’d all be financially secure and every city would have two major daily newspapers!
We know better.
However, for our nation’s leaders, being positive and real is a delicate balancing act.
Since his election, President Barack Obama was very negative on the economy. Since elected, he was very deliberate to say this was a problem he inherited (implying it was just the Past President and not current Congress). In the same breath, he was negative on the outlook for the United States economy. Shadowing his comments were real issues in the financial and automotive sectors. The stock market retreated to levels not seen since the late 1990’s.
Two weeks ago, the White House tone shifted. Real commentary on current financial issues was followed with a positive economic outlook. The message changed. No longer did we hear about the problems we’ve inherited, but the solutions that are being made available.
Last week, the focus was on “shovel ready” projects. This week the focus is on “small business.”
The President talks about his NCAA Final Four picks and schedules an appearance on Jay Leno, people feel better. The stock market starts to stabilize. The promise of “stimulus” dollars has yet to trickle out of the Beltway.
In this case, the power of positive thinking takes the form of “getting on with life.” It reshapes the focus from 10% of the workforce looking for employment and provides permission for the 90% of the employed permission to get back to work.
Yes America you are being “handled.” And that’s ok because “You’re good enough, you’re smart enough, and, doggone it, people like you.”