Monday, January 3, 2011


The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States provides that "Congress shall make no law ... abridging ... the right of the people ... to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." The political autobiography of Congressman David Obey (D-WI) included his interpretation.
when groups come into my office to ask me for something, before we begin to talk, I have them read - out loud - two signs that are hanging on my office wall.

The first reads, "If what you want costs money, are you willing to go home and tell your friends that we need to cut back on the size of the president's tax cuts so there is room for it in the budget?"

The second asks, "Is there anything you want me to do for somebody else that is more important than whatever it is you want me to do for you?"

I ask those questions because I hope they will make at least one person a day think about the broader obligations of citizenship.
Today's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that we, the people, are still not up to his standards.

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