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The Self-Esteem Generation Gives President Obama an “A” for Effort

Remember the self-esteem movement? The idea that regardless of the effort expended or actual results, simply by giving a child loads of personal affirmation, he or she would develop positive self-esteem. It created “Trophy Kids” – an entire generation of children who received trophies just for showing up at ball games or music recitals. And it’s contributed to a growing sense of entitlement for that age group as well. Now, in a revealing study reported by Commentary Magazine, we can see just how much that kind of thinking can shift a generation’s attitude about accomplishment.

The study revealed that although young voters actually recognize the failure of many of the President’s policies and their “dismal execution,” they still support him because he’s “trying.” So when it comes to success in life, we now have a generation that doesn’t value actual accomplishment. They only value the effort.

What will the impact be as that generation enters the worlds of business, raises families, and builds communities?

Don’t worry about actually achieving anything in life. Just feel good about the fact that you tried.


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  1. Interesting that you posit “the failure of the President’s policies.” Ending war. Recovering jobs. Health care for those who otherwise don’t get it. Some would say those align with Jesus’ message.

    I guess eight years of war, economic collapse, trillions in debt (passed on the this administration through wars and other policies) spent arguably making the world hate us even more, thousands of lives lost, hundreds of thousands derailed by trauma…those are what we, as followers of Jesus, are supposed to hold up as MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

    I understand you don’t support the President. My opinion of him, as a leader, has declined as well. But the alignment of policy and heart with belief matters.

    The point here isn’t the particular policies or the politics or even the men involved. It’s the subtle and effective strategy of tossing an assertion into the discussion as though we all accept it as fact. Great way to twist opinions…happens in churches all over.

  2. @richdixon The troop retreat from Afghanistan and Iraq hardly qualifies as “ending war”. Recovering jobs? Really? There are fewer people in the work force today (as a percentage of population) than at any time since the 40s. There are more people on disability than at any time in history. There are more going on disability on a monthly basis there are finding a job. There are more people on food stamps than at anytime in history. Health care for those who otherwise don’t get it? Most of the “uninsured” elected to NOT have insurance. Now it’s compulsory. Health care for EVERYONE is going to increase at double-digit rates until we are forced into “single payer” systems – that sounds a lot like europe where health care is “free” and “health care” is decided by the government not by individuals and their doctors. This president has increased the debt burden by trillions more than President Bush and by more than ALL presidents Washington through Clinton. The economic collapse was primarily driven by “the mortgage bubble”. A policy set forth by democrats and forewarned by Pres. Bush in multiple State-of-The-Union addresses. The world doesn’t “love us anymore” since this president took office. Arguably, we are more despised than ever and there are more nations aligned with terrorists than ever before. The point very much is the policies of this administration have weakened the US to the brink of collapse through the misuse of credit and debt. Oh, right, and the first downgrading of our AAA+ status in history under this president’s watch. Next comes the loss of our “benchmark” status with the dollar. A “poor” boss can’t create more jobs. A “poor” country can’t create opportunities for its’ people. I once heard a wise man say, pursue wisdom and you’ll discover God’s will. I pray for this president to humbly pursue wisdom.

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