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Monday, November 22, 2010

Mr. President, It's Time For One of Those Talks With Your Wife!

An Open Letter To The President and First Lady, Michelle Obama
at Thanksgiving and at the cusp of 2011, an occasion to turn the tide for better times.
(a homework assignment for The President and First Lady from a career-life counselor)


In my blog, I have been discussing my own personal disconnect with my pre-med program at Boston University, how I got into this difficult situation, and what I needed to do to get my life back on track.

Disconnects are are often not good, don't usually feel good, but they serve a good purpose.

As I was preparing what I thought would be my next blog...

the 2010 midterm elections happened...

and I realized that I was feeing a major disconnect with all the politics, campaign ads, and the huge amounts of money spent on these elections. 

I wanted to do something, but what can one person really do? And, I even contributed a small amount myself, so I guess I am part of that problem. But I still felt this disconnect, and I wanted to do something, to express my feelings; I wanted to be heard. I wanted to talk to the President directly. But that's unlikely!  

Then I realized I have my own blog, and I have been writing about my own disconnect with my pre-med program at Boston University, something that now seems so minor compared with so many other situations (yet, at that time it was a major crisis for me, above everything else).

If I couldn't speak to the President, I could write an open letter to him about disconnects.

After all, I do believe disconnects are often not good, but they serve a good purpose. 

So, I decided to write an open letter to the President and First Lady about the President’s disconnect with many of us, and the disconnect many citizens have with our President and, frankly, most of Washington! 

I voted for President Obama, and I still believe he can and will do some good, and hopefully, even great things for our country. I believe his heart is in the right place.

I also voted for Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George Bush senior, Jimmy get the idea. Yes, I guess I am one of those Independents.

I love our country and our citizens. I believe, even in these difficult and painful times, our country still does represent HOPE to most people’s hearts, especially for those who take time to reflect on our roots and the “statesmanship” of great men and women who grew this nation from and through challenges far greater than ours today.

What do we need to do to become a moral role model globally? We’re not there, and we need to be for our own sake and others. In today’s world, a strong military is needed in the context of a stronger diplomacy.

It is about taking stock, saving more than perhaps we did before, volunteering whatever we can of our time, talent and treasure to help another whether through a local food kitchen, or for those in another county devastated by an earthquake or hurricane. It’s about voting and making our voices heard.

But it’s challenging to rise above “bad feelings” that are often pervasive during tough
times. Yet we must, and we will, ...and by doing this, we shall prevail, as will our great country.

For now though, I need to write an open letter to the President of my country that I love, the same country most of us love, and I am certain, all the folks in Washington love, including of course, the President. 


Dear Mr. President and First Lady Michelle Obama,

Ever feel a disconnect with someone or a situation? I guess it’s all part of our human journey. Many of us choose to take the easy out and walk away, hoping that whatever feels off-track dissipates into the chaos of every-day life. By the time we have supper, perhaps read the paper or use the Internet, see the nightly news and maybe our favorite TV show before bed, we have put aside our feelings about that disconnect. We wake up the next day, and we’re off and running with the rest of our life.

Most of us do this on a micro level weekly, perhaps daily. The disconnect may be real, perceived, or both, and we move on, face the next day, and hopefully make progress with our life journey. The key to an effective and authentic life journey is to better understand the nature of our disconnects, discern whether they are in fact real, perceived or perhaps a bit of both, and then act appropriately, especially after some reflection, so we can effectively move forward. 

On a macro level, a disconnect can have huge ramifications.

Mr. President, you have experienced a mid-term disconnect with many, including those of us who believed, and still do believe, in you and what you are capable of accomplishing with your leadership. Many voters experienced a disconnect with you. But many more citizens, including people who did not bother to vote, have experienced a huge disconnect with congress, the ways of Washington, and politics in general, for far too long.

Remember that day in 1962 when we experienced the passion of President John Kennedy with his bold call for commitment; a leader who set our national eyes on the mysteries of space, galvanized a workforce, and the spirit of an entire nation to accomplish a goal that would affect the world for centuries to come. 

In his historic speech about space, President John Kennedy quoted William Bradford, speaking in 1630 at the founding of the Plymouth Bay Colony, and reminded us that "all great and honorable actions are accompanied with great difficulties, and both must be enterprised and overcome with answerable courage".

President Ronald Reagan inspired an international audience with his "Tear down this wall" speech at Brandenburg Gate in West berlin, Germany in 1987.

Our nation, and our world, still yearns for that important inspiration and leadership to set a new course for this century, a national and world agenda for peace, social justice, and prosperity, following your own call for change.

Many advisors are suggesting strategies for you as you are about to work with your colleagues in Washington to discuss "common ground" issues and move through the next two years of your presidency. What we need is "dialogue with action".

I would add these four suggestions.

#1 Re-read your book, The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream, from cover to cover, and write down 2-3 main insights only, from your reading.
#2) Read Fareed Zakaria's article, How to Restore the American Dream" (and have a private discussion with him).
#3) Rent An American President, and watch the entire movie alone with your wife, Michelle, paying close attention to Michael Douglas' portrayal of President Andrew Shepherd speaking authentically and passionately to the White House press corp.
#4) Turn the movie off and talk with Michelle openly, honestly, with unabashed vulnerability, about:
 a) where you both see our nation in the global theater (moral leadership, fiscal leadership, and moving the Human agenda forward);
 b) where you both see our nation, inside our own boarders, struggling with specific issues , e.g., poverty, education, drugs, health care, jobs, fiscal responsibility, entitlement, immigration, energy etc.;
 c) where you both see the President is now regarding the disconnect, and what needs to be done to shift, collaborate, lead, inspire, and take action, to get this nation back on track.

President Obama, you have many advisors and constant access to much information daily. 

But, having this very intimate and private discussion about these topics as "Barack and Michelle", an American couple, who happen to occupy the White House, might serve us all well.

I wish you and your family, a Blessed Thanksgiving and up-coming holiday season. May our nation and our world experience a Happy New Year in 2011, a year that truly begins a new era of peace and prosperity for the Human agenda. 

But for now...

Mr. President, it’s time for one of those talks with your wife, and this will be a good thing.        

Respectfully, A Concerned and Hopeful Citizen of the USA
Edward Colozzi


Have you ever felt a strong disconnect with any part of your career or life roles? 

Many people do with their relationships (one's they have and wish they didn't have or don't have and wish they did have), their work situation, especially the tasks they do at work. It's useful to also examine the characteristics of one's work cultures, and examine what constitutes creative work cultures to become more informed and better able to make wise decisions. 

  • Once you are aware of your disconnect, ask yourself, "Is this real or perceived, or both? 
  • Is it a minor or major disconnect? 
  • If it's minor, you may let it go or decide you want to take action. 
  • What do you want to do, and when do you want to do it? 
  • If it's major, What are you going to do, how, and when? 
  • Do you prefer to avoid conflict, and hope it goes away? What will this accomplish? 
  • Are you willing to push through your feelings of fear, uncertainty, low self-esteem, doubt, etc., and risk being assertive, speaking your mind and heart? What can this accomplish? 
  • What one or two examples in your past proves to you that in fact, you have been successful with risking and asserting your feelings/beliefs? What was that outcome? What did you learn from that experience? 
Making career-life choices is not a perfect journey. It has, and always will have, it's twists and turns, it's rogue waves that you believe might capsize your sailboat. This is all part of the journey, filled with all the lessons we each have to learn along the way. Sometimes these lessons involve disconnects. It's important to determine whether these disconnects are major or minor. Then, it's all about deciding what we are willing to do, to push through difficult feelings, and make important changes. 

Thus our journey continues, rich with opportunities to teach each of us more lessons, lessons that help us improve and become a better, more authentic person.  

You’re not alone. There are Helpful Resources to assist you, including human and Internet-based. Reach out, ask questions, become informed, and take charge of YOUR life. It’s the only one you have, so make it count, beginning now.    

*** Today is the 47th anniversary of  President John F. Kennedy's death. He loved sailing. He loved this country. He challenged a generation to think great thoughts, and implement great ideas, including his 1961 signing of the Executive Order for the Peace Corps, an idea that is alive today for a new generation of believers. 

This week we celebrate Thanksgiving, a week to remind us to be appreciative of what we have, and to be more generous with our time, talent, or treasure with those who have needs.

May your needs and problems diminish, may the love in your heart grow, and may you experience real movement in your life toward that which represents authentic fulfillment, happiness, and perhaps even joy. 

May you also come to realize that you matter and count and have something of value, perhaps great value, to contribute to the rest of us and our Planet. Happy Thanksgiving.      Ed Colozzi


  1. There is a definite disconnect in Washington and in this country. "We The People" need to use our voices to demand an actual change in our government and we need our government to reconnect with being a citizen in this country in the sense of actually experiencing what "We The People" experience daily with health care, taxes, etc.

    Maybe we all need to write an "open letter to the President" AND "Congress"! I agree also that we need to take stock in our fellow Americans and create an "American community" again. It is sad to me that being proud of being an American is thought of as arrogant and a sign of nationalism, but when other countries do it, it is highly encouraged. It seems the only time we can really sing out for the Red, White, and Blue is when the Olympics are on. I love being patriotic and love my country and fellow citizens and hope that the sense of community my grandparents grew up with takes hold of this country again...I think that will also spark change in our government. Thanks for sharing! Looking forward to your next blog!

  2. Thanks Anonymous,
    Yes, an effective government is one that has the fullest empathy with its citizenry in all those areas that affect us daily. I like the "open letter" idea that also includes congress. And right on with being patriotic! With so many problems re outsourcing jobs and the shrinking middle class, maybe it's time for us and our government to re-think incentives for rewarding businesses that decide to remain here in the USA while still seeking to distribute their goods/services globally. Maybe the "Boss" needs to write a new song to add to his hit "Born In The USA", and call it "MADE In The USA"! I'm serious. Thanks for taking the time to share. EdC