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Counting Your Blessings, Backwards

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

Ten, nine, eight… what do you appreciate? When life seems crazy or hopeless, count your blessings backwards—that is, find something to be thankful for in the midst of darkness. It is reverse psychology for adults.


Think of the most onerous regulation or politician in your life and find one reason you are thankful for this trial. For example, President Obama’s reelection could be an opportunity for you to develop a stronger character or feel greater motivation to achieve your goals. This is an uplifting mental exercise, particularly during Thanksgiving week. Here are a few more examples:

Challenge: Weak military leaders

Americans are expressing disappointment in the military in the wake of the Benghazi scandal and the ever-developing story of former CIA Director David Petraeus’ affair. Americans question whether the military is still an institution of honor after U.S. diplomats and CIA employees were seemingly left to die in Libya. And Americans cannot trust commanders who risk national security and taxpayer dollars by putting their mistresses before their missions.

We need to turn off the media’s soap opera and focus on what is good, true and beautiful in life. The media is quick to tell us every sizzling detail of Petraeus’ affair, yet never holds President Obama accountable his puerile foreign policy. Obama authorized a 30,000-troop surge in Afghanistan and 68,000 troops remain despite the fact that one U.S. service member is commits suicide every day, U.S. airstrikes are killing innocent civilians and increasing green-on-blue attacks indicate that our troops cannot trust Afghan “ally” forces.


Blessing: Brave troops

Veterans Day was on November 11. In the midst of scandals, we need to remember all the brave veterans who fought for our freedom and all the men and women who are currently stationed away from their families and loved ones. The troops do not get to decide where they go; they do not get to determine the length of their mission. We must support our troops by pressuring our politicians to bring them home soon. For, our ongoing war in the Middle East is straining our soldiers and inciting blowback.

Challenge: Obamacare

Businesses are dividing full-time jobs into part-time jobs to avoid the high costs of Obamacare. Individuals are concerned that the quality of their healthcare will deteriorate. Insurance companies are frantically trying to comply while remaining profitable. And doctors are worried that they will not be able to afford to stay in practice and provide their patients with the same high quality of care. In fact, I recently visited my brother who is a medical student and he expressed great concern over Obamacare’s impact on his ability to care for his future patients.

Blessing: States’ Rights

Health is an amazing blessing that is easy to take for granted. If you are in good health, express your gratitude by taking some action this year at the state level to protect your healthcare in the future.


Voters in Alabama, Wyoming and Montana recently passed ballot initiatives that effectively nullify unconstitutional federal healthcare requirements. More states should follow suit and declare their right to reverse the federal government’s unconstitutional take-over of the healthcare industry. Obamacare is not just a threat to our health, it is a threat to private property rights, religious freedom and free speech.

Challenge: Despair and envy

Socialism thrives in a culture of despair and envy. Politicians prey on constituents, manipulating their distress in the face of job loss, natural disaster or hunger. When people are homeless, due to a hurricane or foreclosure, it is easy for politicians to convince them that “taxing the rich” will create jobs and revamp the economy.

Blessing: Hope and friendship

The facts show that taxing the rich will merely drive the economy into further recession. Compared to the rest of the world, even the poor in this country are rich. And, as a people, we have shown a willingness to freely come together and help each other when disaster strikes. In the wake of Hurricane Sandy’s destruction, tens of thousands of Americans still lack basic necessities—and the federal government has proved itself to be incompetent.


Dumpster diving, 1970s-era gasoline rationing, looting, power outages and riots are not the marks of a thriving free market economy, but of a bloated socialist regime. You and I need to come together, now more than ever, and find ways to become self-reliant. When the next calamity hits, whether it is natural or man-made, we will not be able to rely on the government. We can, however, rely on ourselves. Let us take joy in this knowledge and take actions to become self-reliant and free.

Three, two, one… I am thankful for turkey, pumpkin pie and the freedom to utilize my talents and make my world a better place.

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