Snowball Effect - Life & PoliticsLife gets cluttered. We accumulate things. When I moved from South Dakota to Washington, DC, everything I owned fit into a 1984 Chevy Cavalier. Seven plus years later, I needed one-fourth of a moving truck. Five years ago when we moved, I needed a whole moving truck.

It is a snowball of things we gather.

And, it just isn’t things. We carry forward thoughts, principles, bad habits, good habits, and the list goes on. Some of these items may be considered “baggage” in perhaps pseudo-psychology terms.

It is a snowball of habits and things we gather.

Somehow, someday, we need to lighten our load. Clean our house. Clean our minds. Make our snowball smaller, more manageable.

Today, we pick up the newspaper (or, more likely, we log-on to some tablet or PC device) and read the headlines.

  • NY Times – “Tensions Escalate as Stakes Grow in Fiscal Clash”
  • LA Times – “Obama abruptly leaves debt talks, issues a warning”
  • Chicago Tribune – “Obama, lawmakers face doubts on debt deal”
  • MSNBC – “China warns America to be ‘responsible’ on debts”

It seems like just politics. However, I believe that this is a reflection on us as citizens as well. After all, this is our country, and they are our programs, our taxes, and our postures.

We may have, unknowingly, developed an entitlement attitude. Programs which began in the 1930s or 1960s or 1980s may not be really relevant today, yet we have become accustomed to them. The same can be said of tax structures, tax breaks, tax cuts, etc.; we have embraced them as being almost sacred.

Meanwhile, the snowball grows to the point where, if something doesn’t change, it will come crashing through. It will still land right on our laps, especially since we are the maker of this snowball.

In life and in politics, we tend to be gatherers. We accumulate without shuttering old ways, old thoughts, old stuff, or old programs. It is a snowball attitude, and we want it all.

Unfortunately, one of the truths in life is that we don’t need it all. We need to lighten our loads. We need to enlighten our minds. We need to light-up our charge again to be responsible citizens.

I guess the point is as goes our politics so go us as a people. All the budgets and programs are a reflection of us and what we have accumulated. We have not let go of much, if anything. In our personal lives, we also carry too much forward without releasing or giving more.

We need to unravel the snowball of life and politics to the point where we can live and support a meaningful, well-rounded, prosperous, and inspiring life.

It is our choice in what we do in our life and in our politics.

I do believe, though, it is time again for us to re-think what we need, re-evaluate our attitudes, and review our understanding of what it takes to be a good citizen… and a good person.