Let me start with a true story about multi-tasking. There was a Mom who was busily doing what Moms do all day, every day. She had a load of laundry in the washer, one in the dryer and one being folded. Dinner was in the oven, the baby was napping, the toddler was playing in the den and Mom was supervising the older children’s homework and entertaining her out of town guests.
Suddenly, a heart stopping screech rends the air! Mom stops folding laundry and rushes to the toddler and finds the child bleeding profusely! She instantly assesses the situation- the child clearly needs stitches! All other projects and tasks immediately cease. There is an emergency and though Mom has never heard the term “multi-tasking” she clearly knows that this is a time for clear, dedicated focus on the crisis at hand and that all the other tasks she is engaged in will have to go on the back burner until the emergency is over.
Yesterday, one candidate for President suspended all other non-essential tasks to focus on the crisis at hand. One candidate recognized that the economic crisis facing our country eclipses the race for President. One candidate put country first- as he has done time and time again in his long life- correctly placing the good of our country ahead of personal and political gain. John McCain suspended his campaign in order to DO HIS JOB! Sen. McCain recognized that all the speeches, stumping, ads, debates and polls are not as important as resolving the economic crisis. The other candidate???
The other candidate says “Call me if you need me.” And “Presidents should be able to multi-task.” HMMPH! To be fair, I will say that Sen. Obama has stayed true to form. He declined Sen. McCain’s invitation to join him in suspending campaigning and go to Washington and get to work. This way, Sen. Obama can continue his now well known pattern of not voting or voting “present” on tough issues. Can’t be held accountable if you don’t vote! Down the road when the crisis has been resolved, he can declare he “gave a speech.” He can claim to have been for it- or against it- depending on which way the political winds are blowing. But nobody will be able to hold him accountable, because he was on the campaign trail while all that yucky taking a position and voting was going on. (UPDATE- Seems that Sen. Obama will be going to Washington- at the behest of President Bush. Even though Harry Reid thinks The Precious should keep on the campaign trail. I wonder if Sen. Obama is feeling like a long tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.)
Sen. McCain has shown he truly understands leadership. Yes, Presidents should be able to “multi-task.” The holder of the most powerful office on the planet necessarily has many, many items on the agenda- all day, every day. 24/7. 365. However, there are times of national crisis when ONE issue, one item on the agenda must take precedence over all others. A good leader knows, as my Mom knew all those years ago, when to put all non-essential tasks on hold and FOCUS! Leaders have subordinates and team members who can mind the store and manage the agenda while the boss handles the crisis.
That is the boss’s job- prioritize the issues and know when to multi-task and when to FOCUS! Bravo Sen. McCain! A living example of “country first!”