YES WE CAN - Congratulations To The First Family
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VISIONS Jan-Feb, 2009 issue
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A Big Thank You to Rev. Jeanette Pintar who was the first to pass this historic speech along to us

By Barack Obama

If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are
possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still
questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.

It's the answer told by lines that stretched around schools and churches in numbers
this nation has never seen; by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for
the very first time in their lives, because they believed that this time must be different;
that their voice could be that difference.

It's the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican,
black, white, Latino, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled --
Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been a collection of
Red States and Blue States: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.
It's the answer that led those who have been told for so long by so many to be cynical,
and fearful, and doubtful of what we can achieve to put their hands on the arc of
history and bend it once more toward the hope of a better day.

It's been a long time coming, but tonight, because of what we did on this day, in this
election, at this defining moment, change has come to America.

I just received a very gracious call from Senator McCain. He fought long and hard in
this campaign, and he's fought even longer and harder for the country he loves. He
has endured sacrifices for America that most of us cannot begin to imagine, and we
are better off for the service rendered by this brave and selfless leader. I congratulate
him and Governor Palin for all they have achieved, and I look forward to working with
them to renew this nation's promise in the months ahead.

I want to thank my partner in this journey, a man who campaigned from his heart and
spoke for the men and women he grew up with on the streets of Scranton and rode
with on that train home to Delaware, the Vice President-elect of the United States, Joe

I would not be standing here tonight without the unyielding support of my best friend for
the last sixteen years, the rock of our family and the love of my life, our nation's next
First Lady, Michelle Obama. Sasha and Malia, I love you both so much, and you have
earned the new puppy that's coming with us to the White House. And while she's no
longer with us, I know my grandmother is watching, along with the family that made me
who I am. I miss them tonight, and know that my debt to them is beyond measure.  

To my campaign manager David Plouffe, my chief strategist David Axelrod, and the
best campaign team ever assembled in the history of politics -- you made this happen,
and I am forever grateful for what you've sacrificed to get it done.

But above all, I will never forget who this victory truly belongs to -- it belongs to you.
I was never the likeliest candidate for this office. We didn't start with much money or
many endorsements. Our campaign was not hatched in the halls of Washington -- it
began in the backyards of Des Moines and the living rooms of Concord and the front
porches of Charleston.

It was built by working men and women who dug into what little savings they had to
give five dollars and ten dollars and twenty dollars to this cause. It grew strength from
the young people who rejected the myth of their generation's apathy; who left their
homes and their families for jobs that offered little pay and less sleep; from the
not-so-young people who braved the bitter cold and scorching heat to knock on the
doors of perfect strangers; from the millions of Americans who volunteered, and
organized, and proved that more than two centuries later, a government of the people,
by the people and for the people has not perished from this Earth. This is your victory.
I know you didn't do this just to win an election and I know you didn't do it for me. You
did it because you understand the enormity of the task that lies ahead. For even as we
celebrate tonight, we know the challenges that tomorrow will bring are the greatest of
our lifetime -- two wars, a planet in peril, the worst financial crisis in a century. Even as
we stand here tonight, we know there are brave Americans waking up in the deserts of
Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan to risk their lives for us. There are mothers and
fathers who will lie awake after their children fall asleep and wonder how they'll make
the mortgage, or pay their doctor's bills, or save enough for college. There is new
energy to harness and new jobs to be created; new schools to build and threats to
meet and alliances to repair.

The road ahead will be long. Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year
or even one term, but America -- I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that
we will get there. I promise you -- we as a people will get there.

There will be setbacks and false starts. There are many who won't agree with every
decision or policy I make as President, and we know that government can't solve every
problem. But I will always be honest with you about the challenges we face. I will listen
to you, especially when we disagree. And above all, I will ask you join in the work of
remaking this nation the only way it's been done in America for two-hundred and
twenty-one years -- block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand.
What began twenty-one months ago in the depths of winter must not end on this
autumn night. This victory alone is not the change we seek -- it is only the chance for
us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were.
It cannot happen without you.

So let us summon a new spirit of patriotism; of service and responsibility where each of
us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves, but each
other. Let us remember that if this financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we cannot
have a thriving Wall Street while Main Street suffers -- in this country, we rise or fall as
one nation; as one people.

Let us resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and
immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long. Let us remember that it was a
man from this state who first carried the banner of the Republican Party to the White
House -- a party founded on the values of self-reliance, individual liberty, and national
unity. Those are values we all share, and while the Democratic Party has won a great
victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to heal the
divides that have held back our progress. As Lincoln said to a nation far more divided
than ours, "We are not enemies, but friends and though passion may have strained it
must not break our bonds of affection." And to those Americans whose support I have
yet to earn -- I may not have won your vote, but I hear your voices, I need your help,
and I will be your President too.

And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and
palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world --
our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American
leadership is at hand. To those who would tear this world down -- we will defeat you.
To those who seek peace and security -- we support you. And to all those who have
wondered if America's beacon still burns as bright -- tonight we proved once more that
the true strength of our nation comes not from our the might of our arms or the scale of
our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity,
and unyielding hope.

For that is the true genius of America -- that America can change. Our union can be
perfected. And what we have already achieved gives us hope for what we can and
must achieve tomorrow.

This election had many firsts and many stories that will be told for generations. But one
that's on my mind tonight is about a woman who cast her ballot in Atlanta. She's a lot
like the millions of others who stood in line to make their voice heard in this election
except for one thing -- Ann Nixon Cooper is 106 years old.

She was born just a generation past slavery; a time when there were no cars on the
road or planes in the sky; when someone like her couldn't vote for two reasons --
because she was a woman and because of the color of her skin.

And tonight, I think about all that she's seen throughout her century in America -- the
heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we
can't, and the people who pressed on with that American creed: Yes we can.

At a time when women's voices were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to
see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot. Yes we can.

When there was despair in the dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a
nation conquer fear itself with a New Deal, new jobs and a new sense of common
purpose. Yes we can.

When the bombs fell on our harbor and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to
witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved. Yes we can.

She was there for the buses in Montgomery, the hoses in Birmingham, a bridge in
Selma, and a preacher from Atlanta who told a people that "We Shall Overcome." Yes
we can.

A man touched down on the moon, a wall came down in Berlin, a world was connected
by our own science and imagination. And this year, in this election, she touched her
finger to a screen, and cast her vote, because after 106 years in America, through the
best of times and the darkest of hours, she knows how America can change. Yes we

America, we have come so far. We have seen so much. But there is so much more to
do. So tonight, let us ask ourselves -- if our children should live to see the next century;
if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as Ann Nixon Cooper, what change
will they see? What progress will we have made?

This is our chance to answer that call. This is our moment. This is our time -- to put our
people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity
and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American Dream and reaffirm that
fundamental truth -- that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and
where we are met with cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we can't, we will
respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people:
Yes We Can.

Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.

-- Barack Obama, November 4, 2008
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Your Success Newsletter - January - February, 2009 - Published Bi-Monthly

"Where there is no vision, the people perish" - Proverbs 29:18

Henry & Dianne Ford


- 1-
NOW is The Time!

- 2 -
Importance of Technology

- 3 -
Victory Speech by
President Barack Obama

- 4 -
Welcome Back
Lawrence Summers

- 5 -
The Honorable Marcia Fudge,
Member of Congress

- 6 -
An "AH HA" Moment
Author Sherri Walker
Success and Class

- 7 -
Journey to South Africa
with Rukiya Lee
Part 3 of a 4 Part Series


Next Issue March 1, 2009

DEADLINE for Submissions
to that issue is
February 10, 2009


including Archived issues

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