A week ago the United States electorate chose the 45th president of the United States. The margin of the popular vote continues to reflect a divided country that depicts fundamental differences in ideology and confusion about what the different candidates really stood for. The day following the election the United States voters either erupted in euphoria or proclaimed that the end of the country is upon us. Some of the comments were well founded while others had no real basis on what is about to take place. One thing is for certain, there has never been a more critical time in the history of our country or in the world where populations need to throw away their egos and look at the situations before them and strive to reach solutions to existing problems. Some of these bridges are beginning to be constructed. The “financial cliff” is looming before us and causes the greatest distress to anyone that understands what the ramifications of this enactment will cause. If the federal government does not enact legislation to bring the federal deficit under control a set of pre-mandated changes will go into effect. Among these are discontinuance of the Bush era tax cuts. This will mean an automatic income price increase for everyone. Additionally there will be automatic government reductions; many in key programs such as defense. While this sends shudders up the spine of many an American there are signs that the financial precipice that could lead to another recession may not materialize. Last week the leadership of both parties met with President Obama. In addition to a good photo op, there appeared to be a genuine interest on both sides to come to an agreement to eliminate the catastrophe. The meeting was cordial with both sides wanting to compromise. Both Republicans and Democrats stated the meeting was constructive. The stock market has fallen 5% over the last week and could wipe out the entire years gains. People are known to be taking out their bank funds and purchasing gold. Such dire actions could lead to panic selling and lead to further selling off of assets. This week one major stock broker launched a television commercial signifying that the sky is not falling. With talks going on in Washington to place the country into a better financial position for future growth, we will eventually see that the sky is truly not falling. Instead of moving out of the stock market this may be a good time to invest in our country. Since the market has dropped so much it may an opportunity to purchase stocks at a discount. Is the cup half full or half empty. Another pair of positive actions have recently taken place when dire consequences loom before us. Israel had finally had enough of being hit by missiles from the Gaza Strip led by the terrorist military Hamas regime. Israel hit a leader of Hamas with a missile. Hamas then unleashed a flurry of homemade missiles and Israel has prepared for war. Immediately the United States proclaimed its loyality to Israel. This outspoken support of Israel has been missing over the last several years and sends a message to our allys that we will not forget them. A second surprise that can lead to a better future to the world was the attempt of the Arab Brotherhood, the ruling party in Egypt, to broker a peace treaty between Israel and the Palestinians in Gaza. Following the Egyptian elections our greatest fear was that the Arab Brotherhood would turn Egypt into a Muslim extremist country and thus break its ties with Israel and then increase tension in the Middle East. On the contrary they may be attempting to be a moderating factor in the Middle East and provide needed leadership in the Muslim world. There are still signs that we have issues that must be addressed in a quick manner. Denny’s, Papa John’s Pizza and Applebees have announced that they will cut employees hours to less than 40 so that they are not required to provide new medical mandates for employees. Papa John’s will also impose an add- on fee to pay for the additional health costs that go into affect in January. And to add to the concern, Hostess will close its doors due to labor disputes. This will probably not be the end of the Twinkie though as it’ its’ parent Company, Hostess, will possibly reorganize and move operations to a right-to-work state or even move its plants to Mexico. For me I am not going to let speculation ruin the holiday that is before us. This week I am giving thanks for a wonderful family and look at all the many blessings we have as we live in the greatest nation to have ever existed. Do we have problems, you bet we do. Can we solve them, you bet we can. The leadership required to get America back on track is with us today. It just has to be focused on the problems facing the country today.

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