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It is easier to be a follower than to be a leader. Followers don’t have to guess what the future holds, they just let the leaders take that risk. Leaders must make decisions based on uncertain or unknown future difficulties and benefits, but must act in the present.
Followers can hang back and take potshots at the backs of the leaders for seeming mistakes, confident that no one will remember the potshots at programs that eventually were successful. Followers can also select points to criticize without worrying about the whole picture.
The Monitor opinion page (July 12) had three excellent illustrative examples of follower potshots: opinions on the Trinity Project and the high-speed rail initiative with the political cartoon.
First, the Trinity project has been in the works for several years with decisions having been made long ago. It is experiencing difficulties due, in my opinion, to the combination of starting two wars while cutting taxes, greatly increasing the national debt, and reducing governmental oversight of the investment industry during the eight years of the previous administration.
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