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First Lady?


Looking through these pages about Liz, it becomes apparent -- at least I believe – that she would make an excellent First Lady. A First Lady in the ilk of, say, Eleanor Roosevelt.


That is, she would push a series of significant agendas that would make a lasting impact, not only in America, but around the world.


She, for instance, is quite versed in women’s issues. And she would fight for gender equality in such areas as career advancement, equal pay, protection for working mothers, support for stay-at-home mothers, etc. In our travels, Liz has interviewed a wide cross section of women, and men, who are fighting for all of these things – and she would take their message to D.C.


In addition, Liz would champion the rights of oppressed women worldwide. Women in the throes of Third World poverty; women (and girls) being trafficked as sex slaves; women being terrorized; women being politically oppressed, and so on.


What’s more, our platform calls for a dramatic shift back to a small farm, agrarian based society in this country. And Liz is quite versed in “…all things farming.” She grew up in New Zealand working on farms, has an agriculture science degree, and in our travels she has talked to a wide variety of farmers about their thoughts – as she’s seen numerous tried farming innovations to help with the shift.


In addition, as we’ve traveled we also did several extended stays working on farms so we could continue to have a good working knowledge of farm life. What’s more, when we get to D.C., Liz is going to expand Michelle Obama’s “kitchen garden” into a diverse perma-culture – with the hopes of inspiring many Americans to do the same in their yards.


Beyond all this, Liz has been publishing several magazines through N2 Publishing the past three years. These are neighborhood magazines starting up around the country. They are designed to enhance community camaraderie. As we’ve traveled, it’s become increasingly apparent to Liz and I that one of the biggest problems in the country now is the basic breakdown of community. That is, neighbors hardly know neighbors anymore and there is a distinct diminishment of a strong sense of place, a strong sense of rootedness that was the hallmark of community in this country in years gone by.


We desperately need to get that back, from neighborhood to neighborhood, from small town to small town. And Liz knows how to do that.


As Liz knows how to help those on the margins of our society.


On three occasions, we also did extended stays in hardscrabble metropolitan areas – while volunteering with the Catholic Workers. They provide all kinds of help to the poor in our cities.


Liz cooked in Soup Kitchens. She organized clothing ministries. She coached latch key kids at a local rec. center. She volunteered at an urban farm outreach. And she spent time helping homeless people we took into our place.


The same as we’ll do at the White House. The Lincoln Bedroom is free, for instance. He’s dead. Nor do I think he’d mind us trying to help people break free from the ‘slavery’ of living on the streets.


And besides all these other things, Liz has been a mom in every sense of that term. For a time, she homeschooled our kids – a real challenge on the road, for instance. She’s been there for the kids’ scraped knees, their “normal kid” emotional dilemmas, their multiple sporting events, their transition to being teenagers… I, frankly, haven’t handled that, oh, as well as Liz.


The point being, Liz is intimately in touch with the “average Jane,” if you will, mom’s concerns. And she would push to mobilize more help for these moms who are doing, most assuredly, the most important, and hardest, “job” in the country.


Also as a homeschooling mom, Liz has spent untold hours researching school curriculum, and the like. And she has a good working knowledge of the ins and outs of this. Knowledge that will prove extremely helpful as we help reshape some of the schooling in America to be more creative and more individual teacher centered – as opposed to more and more standardized curriculum and standardized tests – that are helping turn our kids into, in essence, cogs in a machine.


And as Liz will help me with evoking this educational shift in America, she will also help me with, well, a lot of things. We often work as a team, and I bounce a lot of stuff off her.

In turn she’ll say things like: “That sounds good honey, but it needs to be tweaked here, or revised way more here, or…”


Other times she’ll say: “Well, that’s stupid!”


But she says it in such a cute, sort-of New Zealandish accent – that it, well, takes some of the bite out of it a bit. And more often than not, she’s right. Whatever it is, is stupid.


Who needs a cabinet, huh.


Anyway, the point is Liz would bring a lot to the Cabinet table, as she would bring a lot to the White House in general.



First Lady? - Joe
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