An Empty Wagon Makes the Most Noise

August/16/2010 16:37PM
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I retired early from my business career and from service on various boards because I couldn’t tolerate more hours of listening to empty wagons rattle for hours. We all have a tolerance limit for everything and mine finally hit.

As I heard the highlights of Charlie Rangle’s rant to congress about his ethics charges, I had a flashback. The man spoke for over 30 minutes without notes and said absolutely nothing. An empty wagon.

The more I hear the great orator Obama speak, the more I realize he’s an empty wagon.

Great leaders have certain characteristics. Some have all of them, some have most of them, and anything less than that doesn’t quality.

Ronald Reagan was the greatest American president of my lifetime. He had a great capacity to know his limitations. He knew he wasn’t book smart. He knew he wasn’t a great general or an economist. But, knowing one’s limitations and accepting them allows a great leader to back fill for his shortcomings. Reagan had outstanding people skills. He didn’t talk down to people. He listened, and because he did, he got information. He had the patience to listen. He made others feel important so they confided in him. They worked harder for him. They even cast bi-partisan votes for him. He was very much at ease with himself. Comfortable in his own skin.

He was a far better communicator than Obama. He spoke plainly so people could understand. He didn’t patronize people or the public. He could tell a good story or a wry joke. He got people on his side.

He abounded in common sense. Could sort out the fools from the insightful. He was surrounded by good people. Rahm Emanuel would never have worked for Reagan because Reagan would not have hired a man like Emanuel. A man who reeks with distrust. An egocentric little weasel who irritates people.

Obama was elected because he could read a teleprompter and Bush was unable to speak. But, reading a teleprompter is his only talent. We’re not even sure he’s book smart, since no records of his college experience exists. But, we for sure know, he’s not people smart. He can’t make people feel comfortable or get others to change their minds. He can’t talk to the American public in a way they understand, hence neither he, nor we, ever understood his health care plan. He is very self-centered, cold, and divisive. He is devoid of common sense. Obama doesn’t feel he has any limitations. Consequently, he hires fools like Emanuel and Gibbs and Napolitano. People don’t work harder for him because they don’t like him. He can’t get bi-partisan support since he’s in the attack mode all the time.

The real reason Obama is sinking in the polls is because the public realizes he’s an empty wagon. Rattling every day, every hour, and saying nothing. Blowing his own horn for no reason. Blaming everyone in the world for his shortcomings. A cold, distrustful, isolated man with an inner circle of weasels.

Every time I hear him speak anymore I get another flashback. I’m sitting in a high-level management meeting and some fool is saying something in 10 minutes that could have been said in one. Worse yet, none of what is being said is worth anything. He or she is speaking to impress us and is failing badly. The really smart people who made contributions did it quick and easy like Reagan, the others used notes or a teleprompter and made no sense or no contribution, like Obama. The cold stare is even ineffective anymore.

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