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"A Letter from the Future-Now Write Your Own"
Ventura Star, January 11, 2004

By Terry Paulson, PhD

New Year's resolutions tend to limit our focus to the current year in spite of the fact that most important changes in life take much longer to bring to pass. The same is true of changes on the world stage. Trapped by a limited horizon, short-term obstacles and never-ending political harping, we too often fail to dream big dreams about a desired future. In starting 2004, I decided to take leap into the future. Using a fictional future letter to my son, dated November 1, 2008, I will take a look back on the world scene over the next four years.

Dear Son,

What a time we live in! Would you ever have believed that in just a week, America will be making an historic choice as to who will be the first woman President? Will we have another Clinton in the office or will Condoleezza Rice surprise the world and be the first woman and first black president? The pundits are saying Hillary is a shoo-in and a black, Republican woman can't be elected president. I think they are wrong. I think the country is ready, but we'll have to wait for the votes to be cast. I just can't believe after what Bush has done in the last eight years that Americans will want to return to the Clinton years. Just don't forget to vote. This could be the most important election ever.

After the bashing Bush suffered over Iraq, when I saw the Iraqi crowds celebrating their first free election, I cried. I know I wasn't alone. The cost of freedom is never cheap. It took four years for the allies to put down Nazi sympathizers who refused to accept defeat after World War II. It took well over three tough years and the lives of many of our soldiers and Iraqi citizens to give freedom a chance. By the way, would you send me that message from that Iraqi Christian minister that e-mailed you? It's so good to see that religious freedom is finally surfacing somewhere in the Middle East. I pray it continues.

I wish the progress in Israel was as far along. But now that Arafat is gone and Syria has followed Libya in renouncing the use and development of weapons of mass destruction, the Palestinians are seeing the writing on the wall. I just hope the new border and that complicated, shared sovereignty over Jerusalem holds. It is such a long history of conflict, but for once I think there is hope. So far it is holding, but there have been lulls in suicide bombings before. We must pray and work for a change in the hearts of people there.

Bush's United Freedom Alliance has really started to make a difference, and Rice is committed to continue America's support if elected. The UN has been trying to get Hillary to back the UN, but her support has been lukewarm at best. I don't blame her. The UN proved it was incapable of dealing with Iraq, terrorism or any important issue. Bush's response was brilliant. Instead of trying to end or mend the UN, he just cut most of their funds and created a vision for a new organization. When Bush gave Rice the responsibility of challenging the free world to join the United Freedom Alliance as a tangible commitment to further democratic principles, freedom, capitalism, free press and the rule of law, I never thought they would be able to pull it off. But the UFA's early successes have silenced a lot of the critics; even France and Germany have joined in support.

Why not? There has been a rush to democratic models and more freedom. I always hated giving our tax money to tyrants, no matter how much our "national interests" were involved. Look what UFA has done to our immigration problem. The economic growth in Mexico is finally making a Mexican Dream possible. The guest worker program is under control, and, with Mexico's improved economy, fewer are coming illegally across the border. We're back to embracing legal immigrants who want to be here and want to be Americans first!

As for the UN, it's left doing what it does best-distributing humanitarian aid, settling disputes among smaller nations, providing a central forum where all the world's countries can exchange views and, of course, complaining about how terrible America is.

It's great to see Arnold back for a sequel in Governator II. With business growth responding to insurance, regulatory and tort reforms, the state surplus has the California Dream soaring again. Who would have thought?

By the way, UCLA is going to finally beat USC this year! So you can send the money now. Know that I love you and look forward to seeing you soon.


OK, take out some paper and dream a few dreams of your own. Maybe working together we'll reach some of them.

Terry Paulson, Ph.D., of Agoura Hills, CA is a professional speaker on making change work and author of They Shoot Managers Don't They?

—Terry Paulson, PhD

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