Finding America in a Trumped Silver Lining

With a half-full glass inherited from my parents, I spend days and evenings encouraging students, friends and family to find the silver lining in a Donald Trump campaign – but Al Gore didn’t delay his concession until proof of possible “rigging” erupted in a historical battle between the Supreme Courts of Florida and the United States of America.

When a people find their nation a high powered over charged emotional tightrope, keeping one’s balance while juggling voluminous hyperbole makes funambulism — walking the plank.  For America’s survival, its people need the wisdom to discriminate between media hype, campaign misinformation and the truth that sets us free.

Arguably, our greatest failure is losing the art of listening, for without objectively considering what’s best for our common good, we invite national eradication of emancipation and acceleration of international demise.

Nonetheless, even a spoiler can light our pathway forward:  exposing our forgotten American underbelly, Donald Trump reminds us of past secrets and our land of the bullies and home of the sexually harassed, potential.

Prostrating the vulnerable ultra-Right before the apocalyptic altars of gender and racial inequality, in repetitive gesticulation — including his unwelcomed grouping — Trump’s laying on of hands convinces those needing a straight and narrow paved with simple soundbites, that he is the provider-in-chief of who to blame.

Deserting both Declaration and Gettysburg Address is the deal-breaker exposed by polar opposites, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders.  Now, turning off our exploding devices and their TV predecessor, we can connect directly and ascertain how to regain both our center and its accompanying peace of mind.

Healing, however, begins only when we cease brawling to make a point, and unite to refresh a nation.  To revitalize The American Dream, Millennials and Baby Boomers need to link together to save it from the dysfunctional, inharmonious and disjointed grip of anger.

If Columbia the Gem of the Ocean, kills the oceans, shatters national reflection into a portrait of Dorian Gray and ceases to believe that America’s Exceptionalism is not about being the master race, but rather mastering racism, disclosing fake patriotism and preventing any hard right turn into replacing justice for all, with liberty for none.

Although our 2016 electoral process, is Citizens United infected, voter ID tarnished and machine negotiated, We the People can still vote like visionaries.

Crawling backwards or sprinting forward is our choice, regardless of past mistakes, current less than perfect leaders and vague future goals for saving our Yes We Can spirit, from the falsehood of, Make America Great Again. 

We can bankrupt our souls believing life is rigged or we can discover in ourselves a kindred illumination with Benjamin Franklin, Frederick Douglass, Helen Keller, Anne Sullivan, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Martin Luther King Jr., John & Bobby Kennedy, Chief Dan George, Rosa Parks, Mary Gauthier, Marlee Matlin and Tammy Duckworth.

Regardless of fear instilled by Demagogues, let us progress forward, if not in ensemble, at least without choke-holds.

Let us rise above he who genuflects to derisive division, and instead embrace the courage of patience and understanding – being those who carry on, guided by our Better Angels — not the rage of a comb-over Destrudo desperately craving resurrection from his nullification.

Immoral bullies will never lead America to the moral high ground, for we are the barefooted Valley Forge patriots, Women of Emerge America, People Demanding Action and color-blind first-responders determined to preserve, protect and defend the best that is in us.

Let us welcome and embody the power of listening, recognizing and rejecting bullies, embrace same sex marriages and emulate the wisdom of humanitarian teachers like Confucius, Islamic prophet Muhammad, King Solomon, Elizabeth & her son John-the-Baptist, Mary Magdalene, Mary & Jesus of Nazareth, Mahatma Gandhi and Maya Angelou.

America’s 2016 Silver Lining?  Civil communication and affirmative action regarding teachable moments Trump inspires:  ending bullying epidemic of sexual harassment, spousal abuse, homophobia, misogyny, racial discrimination, rape, child molestation – and a mature appreciation and professional practice of our electoral process – repealing Citizens United and reigning in Insurance Companies for the Affordable Care Act, would be a pro-American re-set.

We bequeath our children the example of our beliefs, lessons and who we’ve chosen to follow.  Let them not Inherit the Wind of lesser men.

The Role of Fashion in the Presidential Race

This Presidential election has been such a crazy roller coaster ride that Showtime even titled their documentary coverage ‘The Circus’. With all eyes on the candidates at all times, they are very methodical in choosing their wardrobes. This leaves everyone wondering what they’re actually wearing.

It all starts with a little boy who grew up in the Czech Republic and then spent years in concentration camps during WWII. Martin Greenfield spent time cleaning suits in Auschwitz for officers. Luckily, he made it out alive and went on to be a premier suit tailor in New York City. He has tailored suits for many Presidents and celebrities including Dwight Eisenhower, Colin Powell, Michael Jackson, Bill Clinton, & George Bush. He has even been listed on the White House registry while Obama was in office. Michelle Obama prefers designers like Jason Wu and Prabal Gurung.

Fashion plays a huge role when strategizing a candidate’s optics. In the 08’ election, the RNC spent over $150,000 on Sarah Palin’s wardrobe. In the past, Hillary Clinton could often be found wearing Nina McLemore, a DC based designer, but this go around, Hillary hillary_clintonspent major money revamping her look. She hired Kristina Schake, a former Michelle Obama aide, to help style her. It’s estimated that she spent over $200,000 for new campaigning outfits. This may sound like a lot, but can add up quickly when you’re spending up to $12,500 on jackets like the Armani one she wore to her NY Primary Victory Speech. She can be found sporting $2,200 custom pieces from Ralph Lauren to $4,000 jackets from Susanna Beverly Hills. She accessorizes her suits with Mikimoto Pearls, Chanel pins, and Manolo Blahnik shoes. Barbara Lacy has done Hillary’s makeup for years, which obviously made her the perfect candidate to do the makeup for HBO’s political comedy ‘VEEP’.

 

Donald Trump is best known for wearing Brioni suits at over $7,000 apiece. Brioni has been scaling back and laying-off employees, even though they supply presidents and some James Bond characters. Brioni’s exorbitant price tags make it hard to compete with cheaper bespoke and made-to-measure tailors. Trump’s slacks are baggy and his suit trump-the-schmuck-2shoulders often run a little wide, so he must prefer them to be made that way. When you’re spending that much on a suit, they’re going to cater to exactly what you want. His daughter Ivanka has very good taste, but I guess that’s a given since she doubles as a fashion designer in addition to being a real estate executive. Her line can be found in Lord & Taylor and Nordstrom. She’ll be seen wearing anything from her line to Dolce & Gabbana. Don Jr. is a sharp dresser and has a pretty conservative style similar to his father. They wear the typical red or blue ties, but purple and pink seem to be Don Jr.’s other go to colors. Designers must love Presidential elections with candidates easily spending six-figures on their outfits. When you’re running for the highest office in the land, I guess you need to look the part.

James J. Crosby
CEO Crosby & Co.
Crosby@Crosbyandcompany.com
Instagram: @Crosbyandcompany

 

Scott Statement on Labor Day

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WASHINGTON – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) released the following statement to workers today in recognition of Labor Day, which is Monday, September 5th:

“Labor Day is a time to recognize the incredible achievements of hardworking Americans. It is also a time to acknowledge that far too many people are working harder than ever, but still struggling to make ends meet. America has made significant strides toward economic recovery, with 77 consecutive months of uninterrupted private sector job growth. But too many working people are still going without the basics – decent housing, reliable child care, and time off work to recover from illness or care for a loved one.

“It does not have to be this way. Ensuring that all Americans have the opportunity to make a decent life for themselves and their families is the central challenge of our time. Whether we rise to meet that challenge will define us for generations to come. That is why, together with 118 members of the House Democratic Caucus, I have championed a Working Families Agenda to boost wageshelp workers balance work and family, and level the playing field so that all Americans have a fair shot.

“This Labor Day, as we gather in backyards, parks and beaches all across America to celebrate with family and friends, let’s recommit ourselves to raising our voices in Congress and all across the country for change—because when American workers do better, we all do better.”

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Expressions Of Prudence (Work/Life Edition)

· To inspire the reader with a positive message

· To ignite a spark in the reader’s spirit, which in time creates change

· To impel and catapult the reader to another level of thinking above mediocrity and on a level all your own

THE WINDSHIELD, REAR-VIEWS & BLIND SIDES

A Different Perspective of Your Driving Experience (Seen & Unseen)

Driving happens to be one of my favorite things to do!  I like the forward progression from one destination to the next.  The consistent forward motion and destiny gives me inner-motivation to simply… get there.  Along with that motivation, I also like to play music (a passion of mine), or a teaching from my Auto University (mind programming, spiritual food, inspirational lessons).  I believe that with a focus on what’s inside my car rather than outside my car, I am able to enjoy the ride better rather than get frustrated at the lady in front of me that knows she NEEDS to be in the OTHER lane because she’s going too slow in the LEFT LANE!!!! Aaahhh!!!

One thing I have come to realize, however, is that our driver’s side is designed to protect you from Blind Spots around you and give you, the Pilot, a great view of what’s in front of you and also what’s behind you.  There’s a full windshield ahead of you that is much larger than the 3 smaller rear-view mirrors!  However, each view has a purpose and provides a protection all its own.  The windshield gives you a full view of what’s ahead so you can move forward with a guard from the wind ahead of you; which allows you to also progress to your destination.  At the same time, the 3 mirrors are used to give the driver a rear-view through the rear-windshield and provide information necessary to move forward!  Yet in still, there are blind spots or blind sides that still exist, which require an extra turning of our head to see; through the side windows!

With that being said, why are the Windshields larger than the Rear-Views? Why is it necessary to have a need to see behind us when we aren’t going in that direction?  At night, why do some rear-view mirrors adjust to protect the driver from a glare?  And if all these views are available to us, why are there still areas around the car that are considered Blind Spots or Blind Sides?  And my last question is with all these views of the outside of the car, why are there still car accidents?

BOTTOM LINE ————————————————————

Driving our cars is a lot like life in the sense that we have to look in front of us into our future and plan accordingly in order to really live and enjoy our lives.  We also have to constantly look behind us in the past and remember where we came from, what experiences we had, what memories helped to shape our thinking about our future and create a belief system for our upcoming experiences!  Our rear-views also help us to judge our distances from where we once were and just how much further we are after having received a promotion, a graduation or upgrade in life.  We begin to appreciate the growth that comes along with moving forward.  That is a gift in and of itself!

Another correlation is that we need to set and consider our goals and visions as the roadmaps to life and our purpose for living.  We will not truly be able to move forward in life without clearly defined goals and reasons to move ahead in life.  Why would you move forward if you don’t know where you are going?  For what reason would you think making a right or left would get you closer to your destiny or destination if you don’t have one defined?  Everyone should set small goals to lead to larger Visions, which drive you and those with you… to Dreams!  It’s all a matter of knowing where you are going that will set the pace and rate of your forward motion.  There is a confidence in knowing…

However, those blind spots or blind sides are still there.  These are those areas of our lives that we don’t see in ourselves.  It may take more than just self-awareness to recognize these areas of our lives and that is where our circles of influence come into the picture.  This is where we need other people that have our back to inform of us of things in our lives which we cannot see.  They are those that don’t mind telling us, about us and revealing to us what we don’t see!  The following areas are just a few areas that can be considered BLIND SPOTS or BLIND SIDES:

1)    FALSE PRIDE – Having the attitude of walking beyond reproach or more highly than one ought to. An unduly high opinion of oneself, conceit.

2)    SELFISHNESS – Concerned excessively and exclusively with oneself: seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without the regard for others.

3)    ARROGANCE – An exaggerated attitude that one’s own worth is beyond reproach or superior to everyone else, an extreme sense of self-pride.

4)    IGNORANCE – To be void of or have a lack of knowledge, education and awareness; usually of something very important.

5)    HEARTLESS – Having or showing a lack of sympathy or tender feelings, having or showing the desire to inflict severe pain and suffering on others.

6)    CLOSE-MINDED – Totally stubborn in one’s beliefs and unreceptive of new ideas and new perspectives.

7)    LOW SELF-ESTEEM – Having a poor self-image or unfavorable impression of oneself, negatively downplaying one’s worth and value.

(Although, these are just a few, seek your own and make a few changes)

Now, consider your Partner in life, your Spouse, Fiance, Business Partner and Friends.  Ask yourself, do they help to sharpen you and help to reveal your Blind Spots and Blind Sides? Who are your Co-Pilots in business or are they sleeping on the job and role for your life? Think about who you listen to or give weight to in the decision making process of your business.  Find your mentors and those that help you to “Sharpen Your Saw,” and make your better in business. Take this time to consider just how you can also be the best Co-Pilot for someone else as well.  After all, how can you expect to be sharpened, if you don’t aim to sharpen someone else?  Speak to these Partners in life and don’t be afraid to ask these hard questions of self-evaluations and examination.  Don’t hinder their answers, don’t shy away from their responses, but embrace them, cherish them and take heed.  Your Destination Awaits…

April is Stress Awareness Month – Tip 4

Tip 4. Exercise

Exercise is closely related to meditation since it gives an individual time to be alone with their thoughts, or an opportunity to let them go.

While it may seem counterintuitive to some people, exercise in almost any form can act as a stress reliever. Any activity from yoga, tai chi to aerobics can be part of a stress management plan. With the gentler forms of exercise, the benefits are clearing out the mind, and giving yourself a break while the more vigorous forms of exercise will typically take your mind off the day’s worries and make you forget about them. Instead the focus will be on your body’s movements and coordination. This can include anything from swimming to a fast paced game of tennis.

Overall, exercise busts stress by pumping up endorphins, and improving the mood.

April is Stress Awareness Month – Tip 3

Tip 3. Meditate

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Meditation, also known as mindfulness is a powerful way to relieve stress levels. Even on a hectic schedule, meditation done for as little as 15-20 minutes a day can help achieve this.

It is possible to meditate anywhere; simply clear out the mind, give yourself some silent time and let your thoughts run free. The purpose here is to refocus attention while eliminating any jumbled up thoughts that may be crowding the mind.

Oftentimes, mediation sessions may also require focus on breathing that can also be beneficial for calming the mind. Deep breathing does this by slowing the heart rate and lowering blood pressure.

The best part about meditation is that the benefits do not end with the session, but will help the individual carry on more calmly throughout the rest of the day.

April is Stress Awareness Month – Tip 2

Tip 2: Call a Friend

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a break to call a friend and talk about your problems. Good relationships with friends and loved ones are important to any healthy lifestyle, and there’s no time that this is more evident than when you’re under a lot of stress. A reassuring voice, even for a minute, can put everything in perspective.

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