Now what?


What might we add to the cascade of comment sluicing through the corridors of power and media this morning?

As a crisis manager, let’s first look to the eternal bright side, at crises ended.

The crisis of the endless televised political commercial is gone, banished in degrees for at least a year, or two or four.

The crisis of smart, capable people publicly emphasizing what’s wrong with each other will creep back into the shadows.

The crisis of the stupid, less-capable people who think rape is something less than a brutal, criminal assault on women will also creep back into the shadows.

The crisis of dominant governance at the hands of white men is easing. With election of the first lesbian senator, Wisconsin Rep. Tammy Baldwin, and wins by women in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, 19 now take seats in the U.S. Senate. That’s a mere 31 or so fewer than should hold seats, but it’s progress.

The crisis of whether gays and lesbians can marry in the state they call home eased by actions in four states, with legalization in Maine, Maryland and Washington; while Minnesota voters denied a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.

Now for a few crises we must still contend with as a nation.

The crisis of a Republican House and a Democrat Senate refusing to compromise and govern is the biggest. Social media are aflame — as were last night’s exit polls — with demands for collaboration and bi-partisanship. The first big test will be the so-called fiscal cliff, which if Congress and the president don’t agree on will lead to a Jan. 1 rebellion by angry taxpayers.

On a brighter note, at least you’re not a comedy writer, who are surely in crisis this morning wondering why they’ll now have to suddenly work for a living since all that great laugh fodder won’t drop in their laps as easily. Or will it?

A smart, observant friend said the Northeast, the West Coast and the Big Ten went for Obama. [For those of you who don’t follow sports, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota, are key Big Ten teams.] Indeed. The South, Midwest and non-coastal West preferred Romney. Those are stark geographic contrasts and the American Presidency Project has a relevant map collection showing how the nation’s divisions have morphed over the decades. The blue-red split is a growling crisis.

Crises come and go. As an electorate, we’ve eased a few, but still face many.

The content of this blog is about crisis management and mismanagement in a digital age. It originates with Steve Bell, who spent 30 years as a journalist for the Associated Press and in four top editor positions at The Buffalo News. He is now Partner/Director of Public Affairs at Eric Mower + Associates, one of the nation’s largest independent advertising, integrated marketing and public relations agencies, with seven offices in the Northeast and Southeast. Learn more about EMA at http://www.mower.com. Steve’s blog is based on his own opinions and does not represent the views or positions of Eric Mower + Associates.

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About steveoncrisis

The content is about crisis management and mismanagement in a digital age. It comes from Steve Bell, who spent 30 years as a journalist for the Associated Press and as managing editor and editorial page editor at The Buffalo News. He is now Partner/Director of Public Affairs at Eric Mower and Associates, one of the nation's largest independent advertising, integrated marketing and public relations agency with six offices in the Northeast and Southeast.
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