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Optimism, Fiscal Cliff, Improvisational Comedy and #RiseAbove

December 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm PST

The first rule in improvisational comedy (I have heard) is to say “Yes, and…” to everything.  How different would the current fiscal cliff debate be if improvisational comedy rules were followed?

White House: “I’d like to raise tax rates on the wealthiest 1%, so that we don’t have to raise taxes on the middle class.”
Congress: “Yes, and we’d like to lower the corporate tax rates so that we can be more competitive globally.”
White House: “Yes, and I’d like to cap tax deductions for our wealthiest so we can help reduce the deficit.”
Congress: “Yes and we’d like to decrease spending by 5% (you can take it from anywhere you’d like.)”
White House: “Yes, and I’ll see you at the bill signing ceremony.”
Congress: “Yes, and Happy holidays.  Have a great break with the spouse and kids.”
White House: “Yes, and you too. Wait, I got you a gift. Just a little something to say thank you for your leadership.”

(Hugs.)

And scene.

See how simple that was? Everybody wins and our nation’s optimism and predictability are restored!! Saying yes and being optimistic can have great rewards.

Actually, in my view, optimism and good cheer seem to be trending up. I was driving into work this morning feeling a bit surly because the traffic in the Bay Area was particularly bad.  Then, I remembered that heavy traffic is actually a good sign.  Heavy traffic in Bay Area means people are working. Generally, the worse the traffic the better the economy.  I do try to be optimistic, but sometimes we all can lose perspective.  There seems to be more optimism and good cheer going around generally.  Is this an economic indicator?  Or, is it because we’re into the holiday season?

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