Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Perusing the News

I'm sitting in the morning sun, drinking my morning coffee, having just finished reading several newspapers. Now it is time to blog and I'm not sure what to write about. I'll start with some thoughts in response to what I've read this morning and see where that takes me.

Today is our provincial election day. I'm glad that this nonsense will soon be over. At the beginning of the election campaign the Winnipeg Sun informed its readers that they would monitor the campaign platforms and promises and then tell the readers how to vote.

Interesting statement.

I found it rather presumptuous, quite arrogant, and somewhat insulting to the reader.

First of all, is it the media's job to tell us how to vote? Does the Sun editorial department believe that its readership is incapable of making this decision on their own? In the last week the Sun referred to itself as a political entity they referred to as 'The  Sun Party". If they think they have all  the answers, why do they not have candidates running for election? I look to the media to provide me with the facts of what is going on in our community and world. I don't need the media to decide my opinions and politics for me.

By the  way - I read more than the Winnipeg Sun. I usually go online and read several newspaers from across our country. Occasionally I'll read some European newspapers. The Sun just happens to provide such wonderful fodder for my rants.

So after months of political posturing, accusations, blaming and generally denigrating politicians across the political spectrum, the Sun has directed us to vote PC today. Why? Because, according to them, it's time for a change. Seems like a very weak rationale to me. It's certainly anticlimactic.

I cast my ballot already this morning. How did I vote? I wrote 'declined' beside each candidates name. First time I've ever done that, but I failed to see any option that I could support.

I read an article about a report submitted to the Department of National Defense (DND) recommending significant changes in the way they do business. Specifically in how the defense budget is spent. In his statement to the Senate defense committee the retired General (Author of the Report) stressed the need for transformation and urged the DND to take advantage of the opportunity to be "better focused on output rather than process".

Be better focused on output rather than process!

Think about it!

When I read that statement my mind jumped all over the place. That concept could be applied in so many different areas; political, economical, personal, and spiritual. It emphasizes the necessity of examining where our resources are going and whether or not they are achieving the best results possible.

In the case of the DND, the recommendation is that less money be put into bureaucracy, and more into front line resources. That sounds very much like the noise made about our health care system for many years now. The same holds true right across the board for our federal, provincial, and municipal governments.

Reading the Globe & Mail this morning I learned that public service employees in Greece were constitutionally guaranteed their jobs for life - they could never be laid off. If I remember correctly, the Greek civil service was larger than the private sector. No wonder Greece is in a financial crisis. (I think France also had legislation guaranteeing citizens their employment for life. Riots resulted when the French government tried to make changes several years ago. I'll have to research that further.)

Businesses frequently employ consultants to review their processes and outputs to ensure maximum profitability. Not for Profit Organizations do the same to monitor and increase their effectiveness in achieving their goals and visions.

Personally, I can only grow if I am vigilant about what I'm doing, how I'm doing it and where I can improve.

Spiritually, I know that I can only maximize my output if I spend sufficient time with God; reading his word, talking to him in prayer, listening for his direction, and acting on what I learn and hear.

It is clear to me that a healthy process is the crucial element in achieving positive outcomes through effective outputs.

My responsibility is to consistently employ that principle in all aspects of my life.

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