The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream

ూ  Format Kindle ଎ The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream store ಋ By Barack Obama ಝ ూ Format Kindle ଎ The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream store ಋ By Barack Obama ಝ Barack Obama s first book, Dreams from My Father, was a compelling and moving memoir focusing on personal issues of race, identity, and community With his second book The Audacity of Hope, Obama engages themes raised in his keynote speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, shares personal views on faith and values and offers a vision of the future that involves repairing a political process that is broken and restoring a government that has fallen out of touch with the people We had the opportunity to ask Senator Obama a few questions about writing, reading, and politics see his responses below Daphne Durham 20 Second Interview A Few Words with Barack Obama Q How did writing a book that you knew would be read so closely by so many compare to writing your first book, when few people knew who you were A In many ways, Dreams from My Father was harder to write At that point, I wasn t even sure that I could write a book And writing the first book really was a process of self discovery, since it touched on my family and my childhood in a much intimate way On the other hand, writing The Audacity of Hope paralleled the work that I do every day trying to give shape to all the issues that we face as a country, and providing my own personal stamp on them Q What is your writing process like You have such a busy schedule, how did you find time to write A I m a night owl, so I usually wrote at night after my Senate day was over, and after my family was asleep from 9 30 p.m or so until 1 a.m I would work off an outline certain themes or stories that I wanted to tell and get them down in longhand on a yellow pad Then I d edit while typing in what I d written Q If readers are to come away from The Audacity of Hope with one action item a New Year s Resolution for 2007, perhaps , what should it be A Get involved in an issue that you re passionate about It almost doesnt matter what it is improving the school system, developing strategies to wean ourselves off foreign oil, expanding health care for kids We give too much of our power away, to the professional politicians, to the lobbyists, to cynicism And our democracy suffers as a result Q You re known for being able to work with people across ideological lines Is that possible in today s polarized Washington A It is possible There are a lot of well meaning people in both political parties Unfortunately, the political culture tends to emphasize conflict, the media emphasizes conflict, and the structure of our campaigns rewards the negative I write about these obstacles in chapter 4 of my book, Politics When you focus on solving problems instead of scoring political points, and emphasize common sense over ideology, you d be surprised what can be accomplished It also helps if you re willing to give other people credit something politicians have a hard time doing sometimes Q How do you make people passionate about moderate and complex ideas A I think the country recognizes that the challenges we face aren t amenable to sound bite solutions People are looking for serious solutions to complex problems I don t think we need moderation per se I think we should be bolder in promoting universal health care, or dealing with global warming We just need to understand that actually solving these problems won t be easy, and that whatever solutions we come up with will require consensus among groups with divergent interests That means everybody has to listen, and everybody has to give a little That s not easy to do Q What has surprised you most about the way Washington works A How little serious debate and deliberation takes place on the floor of the House or the Senate Q You talk about how we have a personal responsibility to educate our children What small thing can the average parent or person do to help improve the educational system in America What small thing can make a big impact A Nothing has a bigger impact than reading to children early in life Obviously we all have a personal obligation to turn off the TV and read to our own children but beyond that, participating in a literacy program, working with parents who themselves may have difficulty reading, helping their children with their literacy skills, can make a huge difference in a child s life Q Do you ever find time to read What kinds of books do you try to make time for What is on your nightstand now A Unfortunately, I had very little time to read while I was writing I m trying to make up for lost time now My tastes are pretty eclectic I just finished Marilynne Robinsons Gilead, a wonderful book The language just shimmers I ve started Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin, which is a great study of Lincoln as a political strategist I read just about anything by Toni Morrison, E.L Doctorow, or Philip Roth And I ve got a soft spot for John le Carre Q What inspires you How do you stay motivated A I m inspired by the people I meet in my travels hearing their stories, seeing the hardships they overcome, their fundamental optimism and decency I m inspired by the love people have for their children And I m inspired by my own children, how full they make my heart They make me want to work to make the world a little bit better And they make me want to be a better man.PrologueIts been almost ten years since I first ran for political office I was thirty five at the time, four years out of law school, recently married, and generally impatient with life A seat in the Illinois legislature had opened up, and several friends suggested that I run, thinking that my work as a civil rights lawyer, and contacts from my days as a community organizer, would make me a viable candidate After discussing it with my wife, I entered the race and proceeded to do what every first time candidate does I talked to anyone who would listen I went to block club meetings and church socials, beauty shops and barbershops If two guys were standing on a corner, I would cross the street to hand them campaign literature And everywhere I went, Id get some version of the same two questions.Whered you get that funny name And then You seem like a nice enough guy Why do you want to go into something dirty and nasty like politics I was familiar with the question, a variant on the questions asked of me years earlier, when Id first arrived in Chicago to work in low income neighborhoods It signaled a cynicism not simply with politics but with the very notion of a public life, a cynicism thatat least in the South Side neighborhoods I sought to representhad been nourished by a generation of broken promises In response, I would usually smile and nod and say that I understood the skepticism, but that there wasand always had beenanother tradition to politics, a tradition that stretched from the days of the countrys founding to the glory of the civil rights movement, a tradition based on the simple idea that we have a stake in one another, and that what binds us together is greater than what drives us apart, and that if enough people believe in the truth of that proposition and act on it, then we might not solve every problem, but we can get something meaningful done It was a pretty convincing speech, I thought And although Im not sure that the people who heard me deliver it were similarly impressed, enough of them appreciated my earnestness and youthful swagger that I made it to the Illinois legislature.Six years later, when I decided to run for the United States Senate, I wasnt so sure of myself.By all appearances, my choice of careers seemed to have worked out After spending my two terms during which I labored in the minority, Democrats had gained control of the state senate, and I had subsequently passed a slew of bills, from reforms of the Illinois death penalty system to an expansion of the states health program for kids I had continued to teach at the University of Chicago Law School, a job I enjoyed, and was frequently invited to speak around town I had preserved my independence, my good name, and my marriage, all of which, statistically speaking, had been placed at risk the moment I set foot in the state capital.But the years had also taken their toll Some of it was just a function of my getting older, I suppose, for if you are paying attention, each successive year will make you intimately acquainted with all of your flawsthe blind spots, the recurring habits of thought that may be genetic or may be environmental, but that will almost certainly worsen with time, as surely as the hitch in your walk turns to pain in your hip In me, one of those flaws had proven to be a chronic restlessness an inability to appreciate, no matter how well things were going, those blessings that were right there in front of me Its a flaw that is endemic to modern life, I thinkendemic, too, in the American characterand one that is nowhere evident than in the field of politics Whether politics actually encourages the trait or simply attracts those who possess it is unclear Lyndon Johnson, who knew much about both politics and restlessness, once said that every man is trying to either live up to his fathers expectations or make up for his fathers mistakes, and I suppose that may explain my particular malady as well as anything else.In any event, it was as a consequence of that restlessness that I decided to challenge a sitting Democratic incumbent for his congressional seat in the 2000 election cycle It was an ill considered race, and I lost badlythe sort of drubbing that awakens you to the fact that life is not obliged to work out as youd planned A year and a half later, the scars of that loss sufficiently healed, I had lunch with a media consultant who had been encouraging me for some time to run for statewide office As it happened, the lunch was scheduled for late September 2001.You realize, dont you, that the political dynamics have changed, he said as he picked at his salad.What do you mean I asked, knowing full well what he meant We both looked down at the newspaper beside him There, on the front page, was Osama bin Laden.Hell of a thing, isnt it he said, shaking his head Really bad luck You cant change your name, of course Voters are suspicious of that kind of thing Maybe if you were at the start of your career, you know, you could use a nickname or something But now His voice trailed off and he shrugged apologetically before signaling the waiter to bring us the check.I suspected he was right, and that realization ate away at me For the first time in my career, I began to experience the envy of seeing younger politicians succeed where I had failed, moving into higher offices, getting things done The pleasures of politicsthe adrenaline of debate, the animal warmth of shaking hands and plunging into a crowdbegan to pale against the meaner tasks of the job the begging for money, the long drives home after the banquet had run two hours longer than scheduled, the bad food and stale air and clipped phone conversations with a wife who had stuck by me so far but was pretty fed up with raising our children alone and was beginning to question my priorities Even the legislative work, the policy making that had gotten me to run in the first place, began to feel too incremental, too removed from the larger battlesover taxes, security, health care, and jobsthat were being waged on a national stage I began to harbor doubts about the path I had chosen I began feeling the way I imagine an actor or athlete must feel when, after years of commitment to a particular dream, after years of waiting tables between auditions or scratching out hits in the minor leagues, he realizes that hes gone just about as far as talent or fortune will take him The dream will not happen, and he now faces the choice of accepting this fact like a grown up and moving on to sensible pursuits, or refusing the truth and ending up bitter, quarrelsome, and slightly pathetic.Denial, anger, bargaining, despairIm not sure I went through all the stages prescribed by the experts At some point, though, I arrived at acceptanceof my limits, and, in a way, my mortality I refocused on my work in the state senate and took satisfaction from the reforms and initiatives that my position afforded I spent time at home, and watched my daughters grow, and properly cherished my wife, and thought about my long term financial obligations I exercised, and read novels, and came to appreciate how the earth rotated around the sun and the seasons came and went without any particular exertions on my part.And it was this acceptance, I think, that allowed me to come up with the thoroughly cockeyed idea of running for the United States Senate An up or out strategy was how I described it to my wife, one last shot to test out my ideas before I settled into a calmer, stable, and better paying existence And sheperhaps out of pity than convictionagreed to this one last race, though she also suggested that given the orderly life she preferred for our family, I shouldnt necessarily count on her vote I let her take comfort in the long odds against me The Republican incumbent, Peter Fitzgerald, had spent 19 million of his personal wealth to unseat the previous senator, Carol Moseley Braun He wasnt widely popular in fact he didnt really seem to enjoy politics all that much But he still had unlimited money in his family, as well as a genuine integrity that had earned him grudging respect from the voters.For a time Carol Moseley Braun reappeared, back from an ambassadorship in New Zealand and with thoughts of trying to reclaim her old seat her possible candidacy put my own plans on hold When she decided to run for the presidency instead, everyone else started looking at the Senate race By the time Fitzgerald announced he would not seek reelection, I was staring at six primary opponents, including the sitting state comptroller a businessman worth hundreds of millions of dollars Chicago Mayor Richard Daleys former chief of staff and a black, female health care professional who the smart money assumed would split the black vote and doom whatever slim chances Id had in the first place.I didnt care Freed from worry by low expectations, my credibility bolstered by several helpful endorsements, I threw myself into the race with an energy and joy that I thought I had lost I hired four staffers, all of them smart, in their twenties or early thirties, and suitably cheap We found a small office, printed letterhead, installed phone lines and several computers Four or five hours a day, I called major Democratic donors and tried to get my calls returned I held press conferences to which nobody came We signed up for the annual St Patricks Day Parade and were assigned the parades very last slot, so that my ten volunteers and I found ourselves marching just a few paces ahead of the citys sanitation trucks, waving to the few stragglers who remained on the route while workers swept up garbage and peeled green shamrock stickers off the lampposts.Mostly, though, I just traveled, often driving alone, first from ward to ward in Chicago, then from county to county and town to town, eventually up and down the state, across miles and miles of cornfields and beanfields and train tracks and silos It wasnt an efficient process Without the machinery of the states Democratic Party organization, without any real mailing list or Internet operation, I had to rely on friends or acquaintances to open their houses to who ever might come, or to arrange for my visit to their church, union hall, bridge group, or Rotary Club Sometimes, after several hours of driving, I would find just two or three people waiting for me around a kitchen table I would have to assure the hosts that the turnout was fine and compliment them on the refreshments theyd prepared Sometimes I would sit through a church service and the pastor would forget to recognize me, or the head of the union local would let me speak to his members just before announcing that the union had decided to endorse someone else But whether I was meeting with two people or fifty, whether I was in one of the well shaded, stately homes of the North Shore, a walk up apartment on the West Side, or a farmhouse outside Bloomington, whether people were friendly, indifferent, or occasionally hostile, I tried my best to keep my mouth shut and hear what they had to say I listened to people talk about their jobs, their businesses, the local school their anger at Bush and their anger at Democrats their dogs, their back pain, their war service, and the things they remembered from childhood Some had well developed theories to explain the loss of manufacturing jobs or the high cost of health care Some recited what they had heard on Rush Limbaugh or NPR But most of them were too busy with work or their kids to pay much attention to politics, and they spoke instead of what they saw before them a plant closed, a promotion, a high heating bill, a parent in a nursing home, a childs first step.No blinding insights emerged from these months of conversation If anything, what struck me was just how modest peoples hopes were, and how much of what they believed seemed to hold constant across race, region, religion, and class Most of them thought that anybody willing to work should be able to find a job that paid a living wage They figured that people shouldnt have to file for bankruptcy because they got sick They believed that every child should have a genuinely good educationthat it shouldnt just be a bunch of talkand that those same children should be able to go to college even if their parents werent rich They wanted to be safe, from criminals and from terrorists they wanted clean air, clean water, and time with their kids And when they got old, they wanted to be able to retire with some dignity and respect.That was about it It wasnt much And although they understood that how they did in life depended mostly on their own effortsalthough they didnt expect government to solve all their problems, and certainly didnt like seeing their tax dollars wastedthey figured that government should help.I told them that they were right government couldnt solve all their problems But with a slight change in priorities we could make sure every child had a decent shot at life and meet the challenges we faced as a nation More often than not, folks would nod in agreement and ask how they could get involved And by the time I was back on the road, with a map on the passengers seat, on my way to my next stop, I knew once again just why Id gone into politics.I felt like working harder than Id ever worked in my life.This book grows directly out of those conversations on the campaign trail Not only did my encounters with voters confirm the fundamental decency of the American people, they also reminded me that at the core of the American experience are a set of ideals that continue to stir our collective conscience a common set of values that bind us together despite our differences a running thread of hope that makes our improbable experiment in democracy work These values and ideals find expression not just in the marble slabs of monuments or in the recitation of history books They remain alive in the hearts and minds of most Americansand can inspire us to pride, duty, and sacrifice.I recognize the risks of talking this way In an era of globalization and dizzying technological change, cutthroat politics and unremitting culture wars, we dont even seem to possess a shared language with which to discuss our ideals, much less the tools to arrive at some rough consensus about how, as a nation, we might work together to bring those ideals about Most of us are wise to the ways of admen, pollsters, speechwriters, and pundits We know how high flying words can be deployed in the service of cynical aims, and how the noblest sentiments can be subverted in the name of power, expedience, greed, or intolerance Even the standard high school history textbook notes the degree to which, from its very inception, the reality of American life has strayed from its myths In such a climate, any assertion of shared ideals or common values might seem hopelessly naive, if not downright dangerousan attempt to gloss over serious differences over policy and performance or, worse, a means of muffling the complaints of those who feel ill served by our current institutional arrangements My argument, however, is that we have no choice You dont need a poll to know that the vast majority of AmericansRepublican, Democrat, and independentare weary of the dead zone that politics has become, in which narrow interests vie for advantage and ideological minorities seek to impose their own versions of absolute truth Whether were from red states or blue states, we feel in our gut the lack of honesty, rigor, and common sense in our policy debates, and dislike what appears to be a continuous menu of false or cramped choices Religious or secular, black, white, or brown, we sense correctlythat the nations most significant challenges are being ignored, and that if we dont change course soon, we may be the first generation in a very long time that leaves behind a weaker and fractured America than the one we inherited Perhaps than any other time in our recent history, we need a new kind of politics, one that can excavate and build upon those shared understandings that pull us together as Americans.Thats the topic of this book how we might begin the process of changing our politics and our civic life This isnt to say that I know exactly how to do it I dont Although I discuss in each chapter a number of our most pressing policy challenges, and suggest in broad strokes the path I believe we should follow, my treatment of the issues is often partial and incomplete I offer no unifying theory of American government, nor do these pages provide a manifesto for action, complete with charts and graphs, timetables and ten point plans.Instead what I offer is something modest personal reflections on those values and ideals that have led me to public life, some thoughts on the ways that our current political discourse unnecessarily divides us, and my own best assessmentbased on my experience as a senator and lawyer, husband and father, Christian and skepticof the ways we can ground our politics in the notion of a common good.Let me be specific about how the book is organized Chapter One takes stock of our recent political history and tries to explain some of the sources for todays bitter partisanship In Chapter Two, I discuss those common values that might serve as the foundation for a new political consensus Chapter Three explores the Constitution not just as a source of individual rights, but also as a means of organizing a democratic conversation around our collective future In Chapter Four, I try to convey some of the institutional forcesmoney, media, interest groups, and the legislative processthat stifle even the best intentioned politician And in the remaining five chapters, I suggest how we might move beyond our divisions to effectively tackle concrete problems the growing economic insecurity of many American families, the racial and religious tensions within the body politic, and the transnational threatsfrom terrorism to pandemicthat gather beyond our shores I suspect that some readers may find my presentation of these issues to be insufficiently balanced To this accusation, I stand guilty as charged I am a Democrat, after all my views on most topics correspond closely to the editorial pages of the New York Times than those of the Wall Street Journal I am angry about policies that consistently favor the wealthy and powerful over average Americans, and insist that government has an important role in opening up opportunity to all I believe in evolution, scientific inquiry, and global warming I believe in free speech, whether politically correct or politically incorrect, and I am suspicious of using government to impose anybodys religious beliefsincluding my ownon nonbelievers Further, I am a prisoner of my own biography I cant help but view the American experience through the lens of a black man of mixed heritage, forever mindful of how generations of people who looked like me were subjugated and stigmatized, and the subtle and not so subtle ways that race and class continue to shape our lives But that is not all that I am I also think my party can be smug, detached, and dogmatic at times I believe in the free market, competition, and entrepreneurship, and think no small number of government programs dont work as advertised I wish the country had fewer lawyers and engineers I think America has often been a force for good than for ill in the world I carry few illusions about our enemies, and revere the courage and competence of our military I reject a politics that is based solely on racial identity, gender identity, sexual orientation, or victimhood generally I think much of what ails the inner city involves a breakdown in culture that will not be cured by money alone, and that our values and spiritual life matter at least as much as our GDP.Undoubtedly, some of these views will get me in trouble I am new enough on the national political scene that I serve as a blank screen on which people of vastly different political stripes project their own views As such, I am bound to disappoint some, if not all, of them Which perhaps indicates a second, intimate theme to this booknamely, how I, or anybody in public office, can avoid the pitfalls of fame, the hunger to please, the fear of loss, and thereby retain that kernel of truth, that singular voice within each of us that reminds us of our deepest commitments Recently, one of the reporters covering Capitol Hill stopped me on the way to my office and mentioned that she had enjoyed reading my first book I wonder, she said, if you can be that interesting in the next one you write By which she meant, I wonder if you can be honest now that you are a U.S senator.I wonder, too, sometimes I hope writing this book helps me answer the question From the Hardcover edition. Audacity Free, open source, cross platform platform audio software Audacity is an easy to use, multi track editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, GNU Linux other Download Audacity Please note that Windows Mac, only available as a bit application may be used on or systems builds will Wikipedia ds ti anhren i ist ein freier Audioeditor und rekorder bzw eine Digital Audio Workstation Auf beliebig vielen Spuren knnen Free Download latest version It the best free Manual Help buttons Some places in have help button, click relevant Manual page windows The recording named fabulous, commanding source recorder, which provides you with capability performing Alpha Free Download free, use multilingual operating You can Tlcharger adoptez l diteur et enregistreur libre dsormais en tlchargement gratuit, rapide sr by Melanie Crowder FREE shipping qualifying offers A National Jewish Book Award finalist inspiring story of Clara Lemlich Portable Descargar Descargar Versin porttil de este completo Como muchos otros programas licencia gratuita y mltiplesBarack Obama Office Barack Michelle As President has said, change we seek take longer than one term presidency Real big takes many years requires each New York Times News about Commentary archival information from Times Home Facebook Obama, Washington, DC M likes Dad, husband, former President, citizen barackobama Instagram m Followers, Following, Posts See Instagram photos videos Lawyer, US UILA Learn s family background, education career, including his election win Find out how he became first African American th United States In office January , Vice Joe Biden Preceded George W Bush Issues Issues Presidential candidates Wikipedie Hussein srpna Honolulu je americk politik, v letech prezident Spojench stt americkch zrove prvn Afroameri II b r k h se n ob fdd augusti p Hawaii, amerikansk advokat och demokratisk politiker som var POTUS news updates Latest stories current updates, comment, opinion politician Fast Facts CNN Read CNN learn president The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream

    • Format Kindle
    • The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream
    • Barack Obama
    • Anglais
    • 26 April 2016
    • 384 pages

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