(Wow! This is the 3000th post on this blog!)
Today is the final day of 2012.
It's probably as good a time as any to get a bit introspective about the last 12 months.
Although it was a pretty good year for me, 2012 has been a tough year for a lot of people. The newspaper headlines spelled out the story of senseless shootings, of hundred-year storms, and of economic hardships.
I've been very lucky. I started a new job in January, and while it's not exactly what I want to be doing, I count myself as among the very fortunate in having a job that provides a decent wage and reasonable benefits. After being unemployed for nearly 18 months, my situation was becoming critical. I won't say that I got the job just in time, but it was definitely getting to the point of having to face some painful sacrifices. Fortunately, the new job has enabled me to postpone those sacrifices, hopefully indefinitely.
But many people still have it much worse than us, and we try not to forget that. There is much for everyone to do in the coming year, and we all will have to pitch in as best we can.
There are also many things to be thankful for. 2012 dealt a huge blow to America's most radical political party, the Tea Party-dominated GOP. We may finally be headed for a time when both parties will work honestly toward what is best for America. The current budget discussion is inexorably heading towards a compromise that for the last two years the Republicans have said they wouldn't even consider. Elections have consequences, and the results indicate this may be the year that the GOP finally backs away from the precipice of insanity and becomes a more reasonable party.
The new year will bring a sense of hope that has been absent for the last several years. 2013 is an opportunity for our leaders to achieve greatness. We can only hope that they have the smarts and the guts to make those decisions that will set our nation back on track.
We shall see. In any event, I wish you all a safe, happy, and prosperous New Year!