Message from Trump on who he really is.

My Take: When people show and tell you who they are belief them. Don’t normalize what they say or do. Don’t make excuses for them or rationalize their behavior. Just accept what they are saying and doing as the person they really are. They are either self-aware, competent, and comfortable in their own skin or just insecure, immature, ego-manics incapable of telling the truth. Trump is simply a delusional ASSHOLE who thinks he is above the law and that the rest of us are fools. Period. End of story. This is the guy we as Americans elected. Really !!! Is this guy who  want to be our leader. Please wake-up and rethink what we as Americans want from our leaders before it is too late.

Message #2 to President Obama and Other Political Leaders—Tipping Point on War may Lead to New Paradigm of Peace.

Message #2 for President Obama–Tiipping Point on War may Lead to New Paradigm of Peace

President needs to support a common sense solution like Russia’s proposal for Syria problem. It is time to show flexibility and common sense that says bombs and guns can’t be a first response to every problem in the Middle East or the world. Listening to the American public has to be the first priority of our elected politicians. The time for bombing Syria is now according to the “insiders” arguing for teaching Syria a lesson and showing the world we are strong. Just because the President drew a red-line and painted himself into a corner because his hand has been called by an irrational and uncivilized regimen does not mean we have to go to war. Of course throughout history the US has shown others we have the military power to kill and shatter lives. This time given that Russia has suggested international monitoring and control of the stock pile of chemical and biological weapons we have the opportunity to stop and find a better resolution than bombing a country embroiled in a civil war.

To go to war the President must:                                                                                              

1. The US must go to war because Syria represents an immediate threat to our way of life and security.   

2. Be clear about the effects and consequences of bombing and how that will degrade and dissuade Syria from more chemical attacks.

3. Show us the evidence that he is 100% sure that the Syrian government initiated the gassing of their own people.

4. Concisely map out a strategic way to stay out of costly war (resources and blood) for all involved if Syria is to ready to respond with everything against our bombing.

I think Martin Luther King, Jr., at the Nobel Peace prize acceptance speech on December 11, 1964 had it right about war when he said:

“So man’s proneness to engage in war is still a fact. But wisdom born of experience should tell us that war is obsolete. There may have been a time when war served as a negative good by preventing the spread and growth of an evil force, but the destructive power of modern weapons eliminated even the possibility that war may serve as a negative good. If we assume that life is worth living and that man has a right to survive, then we must find an alternative to war…Here also we have ancient habits to deal with, vast structures of power, indescribably complicated problems to solve. But unless we abdicate our humanity altogether and succumb to fear and impotence in the presence of the weapons we have ourselves created, it is as imperative and urgent to put an end to war and violence between nations … Those of us who believe in non-violence method and finding peace can be voices of reason, sanity and understanding amid the voices of war, violence, hatred and emotion. We can very well set a mood of peace out of which a system of peace can be built. When man solves great problems he will have squared his moral progress with his scientific progress. And more importantly, he will have learned the practical art of living in harmony”.


Please tell Congress we do not want an attack on Syria and we will have ushered in a new way to solve problems beyond WAR and military might. 

Message for President Obama and Other Political Leaders On War

Open letter to President Obama and our Congressional Leaders:

A common requirement of leaders at all levels is having the courage to make tough decisions and take difficult actions. Many times this is required when the leader does not have all the evidence, information and time to wait for enlightenment. No person ever has a enough wisdom, evidence or analysis to predict the future. Usually it comes down to the best guess given the situation and information available. Many times this means relying on your “gut feeling” which is based on values, past experience and intuition. Courage may be the X factor that separates poor, mediocre and outstanding leaders. Yet, becoming a courageous leader involves a lot more than talking, rating, and or blindly trying to teach others a lesson. The dictionary definition of courage is “the state or quality of mind and spirit that enables one to face danger or fear with confidence and resolution; bravery; valor.” What does all that mean when it comes to making a decision to violently attack another nation? How does war provide answers for moral decisions? Where there are no final solutions or good answers for a situation maybe inaction or pausing is okay? In regard to striking Syria with surgical and limited bombing maybe taking a step back and exhausting all options before engaging in war is the right alternative. Who cares about a red line when our safety and security is not threatened. History teaches us that war and violence just begets more uncertainty, more war and violence. History tells us to rush into War does not need to be the first choice.

Maybe President Obama and our Congressional leaders need to reflect on JFK’s big idea and thoughts about the dangers of war itself.   JFK once warned us when he said:    “Mankind must put an end to war before war puts an end to mankind.” In my opinion we have the time to keep talking and it is time for courageous action of choosing Peace over War .

Warm Regards, Mark W. Hardwick  

Urgent Message for President Obama–To thine own self be True

Thought Stream —

Message for President Obama —Sort out his relationship with himself—have a talk with himself about his core values, beliefs and vision for America  Figure out why he always wants to compromise and  be  loved. Realize You can’t create Common Ground with people who want to destroy you and block any initiative that requires shared sacrifice. Be who you are. Then craft a message and an Action Plan to communicate this vision to the American people. Accept that the goal of the loyal opposition is to bury him in 2012.

Reflections on American Political Divide and Mass Movements –What would Eric Hoffer Tell Us ?

“A society that refuses to strive for superfluities is likely to end up lacking in necessities.”  Eric Hoffer

” All mass movements generate in their adherents a readiness to die and a proclivity for united action; all of them… breed fanaticism, enthusiasm, fervent hope, hatred and intolerance; all of them are capable of releasing a powerful flow of activity in certain departments of life; all of them demand blind faith and single hearted allegiance. All movements, however different in doctrine and aspiration, draw their early adherents from the same types of humanity; they all appeal to the same types of  single-mind thinking.”

 As an idea, the above statement is a powerful wake-up call for all those who believe so strongly in a cause that they want everybody else to believe in it. The danger and negative effects of  single-mindedness or dogmatic thinking and intolerance of other people’s point of view , is the core message of  Hoffer’s True Believer’s.

what kind of people become fanatics?

The answer is personal, psychological and emotional. Before they believed, Hoffer writes, they felt small, confused, destined for nothing. With belief, they feel strong, certain. Their fanaticism transforms them; losers become winners. “Faith in a holy cause is to a considerable extent a substitute for the lost faith in himself.”  Generally speaking these are lost people search for some kind of relieve or anchor in their life.

The goal of the mass movement doesn’t matter? Not according to Hoffer. He says: the more unrealistic and unattainable, the better. It’s not even important that the doctrine be understood. In fact, Hoffer says, the harder it is to believe, the better. Forget your mind, trust your heart, the true believer  says, and his followers do just that.These people are fundamentally dogmatic and absolutely certain about what is wrong with America. Their dualistic mind-set is dangerous because it provides simple answers for complex questions. “We would all be better off with Government out of our business and personal life..”  You and I know that change is the one immutable law of life, that there are always at least two opinions, that we’ll probably die not knowing the ultimate answers. Not so for members of mass movements. They know it all. (“A mass movement…must act as if it had already read the book of the future to the last word. Its doctrine is proclaimed as a key to that book.”)

Right now, we are seeing the spread of anti-Moslem groups in Europe. (That is textbook Hoffer: “A movement can exist without a God but no movement can exist without a devil.”) Here at home, we have quite a few people  who also have a genius for identifying “devils” and turning them into “the Other. For example, all the comments made about Obama during the Health Care and Stimulus debates.

There will be widespread disbelief when Congress and the White House have another debate that may cause the next Depression. When this happens and the mass media and extremist right-wing talkers like Rush will go on about the failure of Obama and Socialism;,great thinkers  like Hoffer will not be quoted  —because they call-out the real instigators of the causes for our divided nation– inequality between rich and poor.

The major point in  Hoffer’s books and essays is to see beyond irrational individual behavior to patterns of thought and behavior of  fanatical  “group think” .

Hoffer says on the first page of the “True Believer the following insight:  “Though there are obvious differences between the fanatical Christian, the fanatical Mohammedan, the fanatical nationalists, the fanatical Communist and the fanatical Tea Party members , it is still true that the fanaticism which motivates them may be viewed and treated as one… However different the holy causes people die for, they perhaps die basically for the same thing.

Daily Quote and Reflection from Eric Hoffer– STOP the extreme “True Believer” Approach to Problem Solving

Quote :“[The fanatic] fears compromise and cannot be persuaded to qualify the certitude and righteousness of his holy cause…We can be absolutely certain only about things we do not understand….By kindling and fanning violent passions in the hearts of their followers, mass movements prevent the settling of an inner balance…( and solving problems).

Reflection:  Remember Churchill’s speech asking his fellow citizens and Americans to fight on to defeat the Third Reich after Pearl Harbor ” We haven’t gone this far because we are made of sugar candy.” I believe it is time for the majority in America to stand-up and be heard and demand from Republican’s and the White House to stop making up unnecessary fights. like increasing the debt limit and start solving the real problems of America–more common sense  and common ground solutions rather than being fanatic about dogma and principle.

Message for President Obama–Is he forgetting the promises he made? His he listening to Us?

Reflection: Was this the change you wanted for America? Here we are on the brink of maybe cutting the “Big Three” of Social Security,  Medicare and Medicaid. Let’s look back at how happy we were on the evening of Obama’s victory.

 What has happened in 30 + months. He said he would never forget that the victory belong to the American people.  Is the President forgetting his promises during the election or just being a pragmatic leader? Can he still renew America or are we goin backwards?

When Trust is Broken…Lesson from the Anthony Weiner Debacle

‘ I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.” Frederich Nietzsche

“The glue that holds all relationships together – including the relationship between; the leader and the led is trust, and trust is based on TELLING THE TRUTH AND INTEGRITY. MWH

The only person who now can correct this situation is Representative Weiner. He needs to make a difficult choice about whether to stay or resign his position in Congress. Based on the information revealed so far and the standards of Congress he now needs to do the right thing—resign. Let’s get beyond this distraction and start solving the rel problems ofAmerica—the need for quality jobs and a thriving economy. What do you think?As the American public contemplates another man acting badly (Congressman Weiner’s lewd behavior and cover-up) I reflected that at the core of this issue is broken trust. When we look at Weiner’s and many other men’s inappropriate and embarrassing personal behavior we see a lack of impulse control and in general an inability to monitor their testosterone urges. They have difficulty anticipating or measuring consequences for their action or think they are to powerful to be held accountable for their actions. Remember that trust is the glue that holds and keeps relationships together. Without trust you lose credibility and without credibility it is difficult to do your job for the people you are representing. Connecting with others becomes difficult, and collaboration to solve problems next to impossible. To be trustworthy means to be dependable or that you can be counted on to do what you said you will do (DWYSYWD).

Cure for America’s Lack of Vision and Direction– New Leaders Needed…

“We must be silent before we can listen. We must listen before we can learn. We must learn before we can prepare. We must prepare before we can serve. We must serve before we can lead.” ~ by William Arthur Ward 

Starting and building a better America is all about leadership – a “flash of brilliance”, honing the idea, building an involved team and followers and developing strategic plans based on vision and experience. What have I missed on –Oh Yeah, creating an environment for growth and clearing a path over and through all negative objectors and real obstacles. Yet the image of leadership in government and business is at an all-time low, according to national leadership experts, considering the political debacles, record business bankruptcies, and executive fraud cases. For example read what James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner in their book on Leadership view credibility as the foundation of future leaders. They say “Leaders we admire do not place themselves at the center; they place others there. They do not seek the attention of people; they give it to others. They do not focus on satisfying their own aims and desires; they look for ways to respond to the needs and interests of their constituents. They are not self-centered; they concentrate on the constituent. . . Leaders serve a purpose and the people who have made it possible for them to lead . . . . In serving a purpose, leaders strengthen credibility by demonstrating that they are not in it for themselves; instead, they have the interests of the institution, department, or team and its constituents at heart. Being a servant may not be what many leaders had in mind when they choose to take responsibility for the vision and direction of their organization or team, but serving others is the most glorious and rewarding of all leadership tasks.” ~ by James Kouzes and Barry Posner in Credibility: How Leaders Gain and Lose It, Why People Demand It.

If the country is to recover financially, politically, and emotionally new transformational leaders will have to emerge. It will take new leaders who understand that leadership is a about flexibility, serving people through participatory processes,  not power and commands. These leaders will identify the problems people want solved not made-up issues such as deficit spending during a time of joblessness and poor consumer confidence. These new leaders will be citzen-centered rather than self-centered, having the mental mindset of collaboration and flexibility, authenticity, innovation and focus on problem solving and results. They will have the required passion, perseverance, assertiveness and ethical character to do what is right to achieve shared goals.  For example, having everyone including the very rick 2% of Americans and big Corporations  pay their fair share to get America back on track. What these new leaders will focus on is developing relationships across party lines so as to find common ground in making America strong again.

Let’s examine the lack of leadership in our government. This Citzen-Ccentered leadership style will be  different from many media reports that  see leadership as position power and character driven. Leaders  before being elected will have to show proven track records for producing results through democratic processes and engagement with people. Here are some of the keys for succeeding as a leader in the 21st Century::

  • Communication skills of Active Listening and Empathy are the most important skills for a future leader. We need to pay attention to the words and actions of others while suspending judgment long enough to allow your thinking to catch up with your emotional instincts. Why? Because as leaders, if we speak too soon, we shut off communication and stifle innovation and problem solving.  When shut of communication we create divisiveness and encourage decreased involvement and participation. We create an environment of win-loss thinking and dictatorial mandates that do not gain the support of followers. Thus, creating a more tribal  and patrician approach to governance than pluralist involved electorate.
  • Leadership is a learned behavior, not a character trait. Good judgment, for example, is certainly a hallmark of exceptional leadership, but it isn’t something you are born with. “More than anything, good judgment comes from listening and learning how to cooperate and gain public or employee support for their vision and initiatives.
  • Communicating and storytelling. This is not a skill everyone is born with, but it’s a skill we can all develop. People on your team want to believe! They want to believe you know where we are going, that you keep your promises or you will get us there even if you are not  sure of the exact path at this moment. They want stories that inspire them and encourage their involvement in creating their own constructive solutions to problems.
  • MMFI Rule and Recognition for contribution for team success. This is necessary to sustain motivation during the hard times. It’s not hard to do and doesn’t require a lot of effort or expensive gifts. A thank-you note or peer recognition is enough most of the time.
  • Negotiation is a practical skill for every leader. Negotiation is often misunderstood to be the domain of clever deal makers. It’s actually really simple. Make very clear requests for a promise. Understand exactly what the promise is – what is being done, when, and what the standard of excellence is, and then check up on the status to make it happen.
  • Leadership for Others rather than focus on personal achievement and ambition. We need leaders who use power as a tool for inspiring others to create a better future for all not the select few , not as a tool for retaining their position or perks.
  • Assertiveness–Firm and decisive decisions that take courage and spine to make.  

These are the process and  leadership skills essential for 21 Century Leadership, inspiring excellence, and meeting followers needs. They are easily practiced, and serve as the foundation for successfully attracting funding, talent, making tough decisions and persevering in reach the vision that inspired us all in the beginning.

In this fashion the transformational leadership deficit is really an “opportunity” for selfless people to get involved and put us back on the path of freedom, caring and economic security.  So practice the leadership skills needed, and step in when you are ready. Now is your golden opportunity – let’s see how many of you are up to the challenge. We need you all.

Evaluating President Obama on Principle-Centered Leadership. What’s your score for him?

“In organizations, real power and energy is generated through relationships. The patterns of relationships and the capacities to form them are more important than tasks, functions, roles, and positions.” Margaret  J. Wheatley Leadership and the New Science

In the real world, the people who get Leadership right, again and again, are the ones that demonstrate in their actions the traits of Principle-Centered Leadership. Using these principles to guide their everyday interactions and decisions will make them a true leader of and for people, and it’s available to anyone who makes these principles “top of the mind” priority.

These principles are a powerful framework for assessing the effectiveness of leaders. It gives us insight into strengths and areas for improvement when evaluating a leader and their ability to set a compelling vision and mission for any organization and team they might be working with. More important, it sets up the opportunity for us to take stock of leaders, such as their use of values, control, selfishness and command. In concrete ways it shows if leaders are congruent in their espoused values and their actions.

Some leaders are followed out of fear or their ability to control others. But what about cresting followers by using these proven traits that make a leader someone people admire and believe in? Top 8 Characteristics of Principle-Centered Leaders (Ch 1, Principle-Centered Leadership by Stephen Covey) On a 1 being low on the trait up to 10 always demonstrating this trait how does President Obama stack up as Principle-Centered Leader. So your challenge is to check your perceptions of how President would lead when he was running for the presidency vs. your actual experience with hin as President. Is their a gap between what he said and is noe doing or his he congruent with his promises as a candidate? As we approach his two + years in office. What is President Obama’s score as a Principled-Center Leader?

1. He is a masters of live–long learning.
2. He is always looking to understand and be of service to others. (Empathy)
3. He models positive energy and calm under adversity
4. He believes in other people
5. He leads a balanced live.
6. He sees life as an adventure.
7. He is synergistic in his approach to problem solving (Thinking Win-Win)
8. He practices self-self-renewal and personal change.


Please rep[ort your scores so we can give the President our scorecard. Thanks.


Negotiation by White House Team failed! Why? Incompetence.

“The country needs & demands bold, persistent experimentation…take a method & try it: If it fails, try another.” FDR

President stepping on it. The bear trap was set and the president and his so-called negotiating team walked right into it and are now stuck. What went wrong? Let me lay out a few errors in the White House deal with Republicans:

1. President Obama talked about changing or letting the tax breaks for the wealthy expire during the campaign. He even said the “tax cuts for the wealthy offended his conscience”. (Indiana Speech on the campaign trail 2008) . Then when elected and having the political capital to do something about these taxes the White House and Congress did nothing but “kick the can” down the road. Then at the 11th hour Obama refuses to take a strong stand and hands off the negotiations to, Tim Gittner  and his Budget Director, two incompetent weak links, who caved-in to the “Party of No”.

2. White house had no negotiating strategy but to get something done. They are incompetent or disinterested in representing the people who elected him.

3. Sent VP Biden down to the Congress to tell the Democrats who had just come through a tough beating in the election. Biden’s message on the Tax Cut deal–” take it or leave it”. This is arrogant and unacceptable way to treat dully elected officials. A serious miscalculation and unacceptable and incompetent way to govern in a Democracy.

2. Republicans are now circulating a strategic memo to start calling the new tax cuts if passed the Obama tax cuts. Then when they come into power they can start screaming about the deficit and failed Obama policies.

3. Didn’t realize you can’t negotiate with a dishonest broker, someone who has a hidden agenda. or is operating to destroy you.

4. Democratic negotiating team had no vision or clear-cut goals going into the negotiation

5. President Obama is obsessed with bipartisanship at any cost. 700-900 Billion to the top 2% wealthiest people in the US.

What is next–a revolt of the true democrats and smart policy makers to not let this happen on their watch. For example, Nancy Pelosi will not let a vote happen on this horrible tax plan.

Where do you stand on this Tax Plan?


Challenge for Obama’s Presidency: What went wrong and where to go from here?

Obama caves-in and gives the Party of No another astounding victory against the majority of Americans declared opposition to wealthy tax cuts, those of us who expected an assertive and pro-active President are puzzled by his inept style of negotiating with himself before confronting the Republicans failed policies of more tax cuts, greed and accumulation of more money for the wealthy.  Obama announced yesterday to continue to play “kick the can” with the Republicans at the expense of the middle class.  It seems to me this White House does not care to or want to fight for the 84% of the Democrats who said no more tax cuts for the wealthy and no more deficit spending. This was a moment of truth for this President in the war for the soul of our Representative  Republic. He failed by looking weak and incompetent.  We must try to save him from his own tragic and ill-advised strategy of “rope a dope.”  Maybe he just wants to be known as a nice guy. But really how many punches can you take before fighting back?

Continue reading “Challenge for Obama’s Presidency: What went wrong and where to go from here?”

After the Mid-Terms: Obama’s Leadership Imperatives

"America was not built on fear. America was built  on courage, 
on imagination and unbeatable determination to do the job at hand." Harry Truman 1947

As President Obama offers another olive branch and marshmallows one wonders if he understands the war for the soul of our Representative Republic he is in the mist of.  Maybe he just wants to be known as a nice guy. His new strategy is the one  he has been taking for two years-"Let's all just get along". I guarantee you this will not work when the Republicans are spouting off about the goals for their governing strategy--defeat Obama and take this country back to the future with more tax cuts for the wealthy and dismantling the New Deal cornerstones Social Security and Medicare. Maybe taking a page out of Harry Truman's  approach would suggest another and more assertive way to handle the party of "No"--Let's get the job done. Continue reading "After the Mid-Terms: Obama’s Leadership Imperatives"

Blanche Lincoln needs to go–“Tell her don’t ask”

Newsflash–Blanche Lincoln just committed career suicide. It’s not enough that she was against the Public Option and a progressive voice for HC reform. She now is against eliminating “Don’t Ask Don’t tell” for gays in the military.  This was her second big opportunity to show she supports change and represents the voters of Arkansas –she failed.

Lincoln was a critic of the public option, backed the Baucus bill in the Finance Committee, and lobbied not even to put the “Public Option” on the table for discussion. So after this wrong headed position what does she do but vote against even discussing the “Don’t ask, Don’t Tell” amendment.   She is not a leader who is championing change or even compromise. She has taken up the banner of fear and  no change of the republican party. Maybe she needs some time off to figure out who she was sent to represent and how to get things done that will improve the quality of life for her constituents and the American people. Maybe we all need to become more effective advocates for change. Let her know you thoughts and ideas for change by calling or e-mailing her office today:

1-202-224-4843 or e-mail her

President OBAMA–Assertive Change Leader or Compromising Peacemaker?

Assertive leaders are not afraid to lose fans as they keep their loyalists and base consistently delighted. If we are to secure the change we voted for we need more assertiveness from President Obama..”

Change and leadership are  not just about vision, strategy, balancing the budget or reducing the National debt. It is hooking followers on ownership, commitment and responsibility to something they believe in emotionally. It is about engaging people both inside and outside an organization in a clear and common sense approach to solving problems and creating new opportunities to create a BETTER LIFE. Leadership is about uniting in a shared goal and agenda AND ACCOMPLISHING SOME WOW’S. Remember wow is defined as a striking success not just small victories. Continue reading “President OBAMA–Assertive Change Leader or Compromising Peacemaker?”

Oil Spill fiasco shows “Achilles Heel” of Obama’s Leadership Style

“Confidence–thrives on honesty, on honor, on the sacredness of obligations, on faithful protection and on unselfish performance. Without them it cannot live.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt

Today we are going to take a look at what may be missing in President Obama’ leadership style that is shaking our confidence in him as a transformational leader. Maybe it is the loss of his campaign’s bold vision being turned into action or the need for a more Assertive Style of Leadership that relies more on protecting the public good than negotiating with corporate criminals and unethical leaders. There is no doubt that creating a perception of being assertive, in control, calm and decisive in times of crisis or chaotic situations  is critical for anyone who wants to be a leader. There needs to be a healthy fear that the leader has the power and willingness to act in the best interest of American public.

When a crisis hits there  is little time for just talk and false promises. The great management expert, Dr.Peter Drucker, once said: “leadership is not about charisma, or appearances but is all about responsiveness and performance”. Continue reading “Oil Spill fiasco shows “Achilles Heel” of Obama’s Leadership Style”