When the lead dog falters

Each January, in the depths of a cold winter, our small town holds a winter festival to encourage townspeople to step outdoors, as well as bring economic activity during a slow season.  This is accomplished with a variety of events; one of which is an Iditarod race.

In years past, I have thoroughly enjoyed watching the prowess of the mushers and the extreme loyalty and strength exhibited by their sled dogs as they blindly race forward in the bitter cold; the lead dog only wanting only to please his musher and the rest of the team only wanting to follow the lead dog.

In speaking with some of the participants, it became apparent that the common element for success boils down to one thing: The lead dog.  Sometimes called the Alpha, the lead dog is crucial as he follows the musher's commands and encourages the remainder of the team to mimic his stride and pace.  The lead is always the strongest dog. The relationship between the musher and this dog is paramount to a successful team.  Without it, there is confusion, competition within the team and eventual failure.

The glut of events over the past 18 months have brought me to the realization that our country, much like the sled dog team, is in serious jeopardy because of a self absorbed lead dog; our President.  The "alpha" dog we have chosen is not the strongest in the pack...he is merely the one that had the saddest eyes and what we thought was a kind spirit.  This dog is guiding his team (the Congress) as if the success of the same is unimportant.  He has a finish line in mind, but it's not the same finish the musher is aiming for.

We, the people, are the musher in this team, yet our lead dog doesn't seem to care to follow our commands.  We scream at the dog, we plead with the dog, but the dog doesn't listen.  We can see the snowy, rocky cliffs ahead, so we beg the dog to stop or at least slow down.  Careening toward any number of crevasses and avalanche-prone overhangs, our lead dog ignores us, believing that he knows best.  The republican dogs on the right side of the team and the democrat dogs on the left just follow along blindly, knowing their job is to simply match the pace of the leader:  None willing to challenge the alpha.

Currently, the pace of this race is astronomical.  This sled, with musher hanging on for dear life, is rapidly propelling us towards an inevitable crash.  The goal now is no longer to finish the race; but make every attempt to hang on long enough until the lead dog has run himself into complete exhaustion.  Until then, we will be forced to continue to look at the butts in front of us!
Each January, in the depths of a cold winter, our small town holds a winter festival to encourage townspeople to step outdoors, as well as bring economic activity during a slow season.  This is accomplished with a variety of events; one of which is an Iditarod race.

In years past, I have thoroughly enjoyed watching the prowess of the mushers and the extreme loyalty and strength exhibited by their sled dogs as they blindly race forward in the bitter cold; the lead dog only wanting only to please his musher and the rest of the team only wanting to follow the lead dog.

In speaking with some of the participants, it became apparent that the common element for success boils down to one thing: The lead dog.  Sometimes called the Alpha, the lead dog is crucial as he follows the musher's commands and encourages the remainder of the team to mimic his stride and pace.  The lead is always the strongest dog. The relationship between the musher and this dog is paramount to a successful team.  Without it, there is confusion, competition within the team and eventual failure.

The glut of events over the past 18 months have brought me to the realization that our country, much like the sled dog team, is in serious jeopardy because of a self absorbed lead dog; our President.  The "alpha" dog we have chosen is not the strongest in the pack...he is merely the one that had the saddest eyes and what we thought was a kind spirit.  This dog is guiding his team (the Congress) as if the success of the same is unimportant.  He has a finish line in mind, but it's not the same finish the musher is aiming for.

We, the people, are the musher in this team, yet our lead dog doesn't seem to care to follow our commands.  We scream at the dog, we plead with the dog, but the dog doesn't listen.  We can see the snowy, rocky cliffs ahead, so we beg the dog to stop or at least slow down.  Careening toward any number of crevasses and avalanche-prone overhangs, our lead dog ignores us, believing that he knows best.  The republican dogs on the right side of the team and the democrat dogs on the left just follow along blindly, knowing their job is to simply match the pace of the leader:  None willing to challenge the alpha.

Currently, the pace of this race is astronomical.  This sled, with musher hanging on for dear life, is rapidly propelling us towards an inevitable crash.  The goal now is no longer to finish the race; but make every attempt to hang on long enough until the lead dog has run himself into complete exhaustion.  Until then, we will be forced to continue to look at the butts in front of us!

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