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Obama Thinks In Principles

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Joseph A. Bailey, II, M.D.
Whereas the underground foundation of a skyscraper building rests on a solid base, a Principle represents that foundation (and truth is the base). Anything real has principles and those principles make the thing what it is. A principle serving as a bridge of truth among facts shows their interrelationships.

In Critical and Rational Thinking a principle is a bottom or origin or essential upon which successive thoughts or facts spring. Principles are the basics at the starting gate for learning or teaching. To become proficient in both complex tasks requires 10,000 hours (about ten years) of intense work. It is fascinating to see these foundational and bridging aspects of principles in action by how Obama uses them in dealing with wide-spread problems in multiple fields as well as within a given field that he has never seen nor heard of before. Such a study is instructive to those who will be “Stars” in the marketplace and will face similar problems. Obama probably learned about principles and how to manipulate them from reading in general and being a student of history in particular.

Reading taught him whom and what to value; whose shoulders he was standing on to be able to take advantage of opportunities; and no doubt increased his dimensions in taste. Books on Abraham Lincoln and Roosevelt taught him to forgive and forget the nasty things opponents said about him so as to be able to move on and move forward.  This achievement demanded that he keep a mind free of all emotional “junk.” From reading and the Black church Obama learned the principles of when and how to inspire USA people on the need for Change from the present course and the “We-ness” orientation toward other nations if the world is to be a better place. He realized the block to getting things done is rivalry between Democrats and Republicans and to hopefully get around is through gifts given to appropriate peoples (e.g. give important positions to Republicans and to top Democrats who helped him get elected) and to prevent having as many enemies as possible. By bringing opponents close he will get people who disagree and disagreements open up new avenues for thoughts and for solutions. Opponents are the only ones likely to tell you the truth. Another important point is that despite all the problems created by Bush, Obama did not partner with Bush and thereby avoided owning Bush’s problems. Instead of being blamed for them, he became familiar with and prepared to handle them only from the perspective of a problem-solver.

Thus, any success makes him look like a savior.

Although some say Obama “talks like a professor and seems aloof,” the problem is that the majority of people do not know to listen to him. He, like I, am a precision thinker who has precise denotative meanings for words (as opposed to most peoples “general idea” about a meaning). He eliminates all extra words that could interfere with clearly presenting the main point. The essential thing is that in answering complex questions he provides a context and inside this frame he constructs the parts that go into his answers.  Meanwhile, he stays totally focused on the point and its associated process (which most people have not trained their minds to do). The building of his answer takes into account the multiple planes of existence which are required to adequately handle the question. The answer is designed to bring people together and avoid enemies. Since “everybody” is waiting to take information out of context and distort it or leave out a key aspect of what he said or twist what he said in a manner not intended, he must be careful in wording answers. By so doing he can recall what he said and scan the various openings he left for himself each time he tries to correct the misperceptions presented by people with limited thinking abilities or people who are trying to make him look bad. This is defensive Critical Thinking.

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