So how do we get out of this deteriorating situation where we lack political leaders willing to make decisions on national priorities through votes and compromise? How can we save our children from the promises we made to ourselves, which we cannot afford? How can we stop politicians from promising everything to everybody and, in the process, leaving our kids with choking debt?
If enough of us stand up and demand our politicians act, they will. We did it a year ago to block legislation that would have damaged the Internet. It’s time we did it again.
Here is what I suggest:
● Insist politicians agree on the facts. A group I support, No Labels, has proposed that political leaders sign a document each year representing the actual finances of the nation.
● Insist politicians work across party lines to solve problems. Already, more than 40 members of Congress have committed to this idea. Ask your member why he or she is not part of this group.
● Insist politicians come up with a long-term plan based on shared sacrifice. If our brave soldiers can risk life and limb, can’t we accept the reality that we have to give more and get less from government so our children have a chance to succeed? Our parents certainly sacrificed for us. Why can’t we sacrifice for our children?
If you believe in any of this, pass it along, write a letter to the editor, post an article on a blog, run for office, join No Labels or the Innovation Movement. Do something. Silence is not an option when our nation’s and our children’s future is on the line.
Gary Shapiro is the president and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®, the U.S. trade association representing more than 2,000 consumer electronics companies, and the author of the New York Times best-selling books Ninja Innovation: The Ten Killer Strategies of the World’s Most Successful Businesses and The Comeback: How Innovation Will Restore the American Dream. His views are his own. Connect with him on Twitter: @GaryShapiro.