Here are some thoughts on a few events of the past year that captured the public’s attention and that stick out in my mind:
- Election 2012 — last Nov. 6 brought to a close a year of intense, often acrimonious campaigning for the presidency and other elected offices at the local, state, and federal level.
The year seemed like a decade. Politicians collectively spent billions of dollars to get elected or hold onto positions in which they were the incumbent.
Democratic and Republican presidential campaigns alone tipped the $2 billion mark. With congressional, gubernatorial, and other campaign spending taken into account, the total amount came to $6 billion or so.
Without getting into specific candidates or issues, when all was said and done, the people overwhelmingly voted for an America of greater fairness, tolerance and peace.
But the main thing this writer took away from the last election cycle is that votes cannot be bought. And, more and more, the American people cannot easily be fooled.
- 121212 — that is the name of last week’s benefit concert for the victims of superstorm Sandy. Last October, Sandy was responsible for over 125 deaths in the northeastern United States and an estimated $65 billion in property damage.
The 121212 benefit at Madison Square Garden was made available to more than 2 billion viewers worldwide and raised more than $30 million from ticket sales alone.
The event featured some of the biggest stars in show business, who donated their live performances in order to ensure that, as host Billy Crystal said, “100% of the proceeds go to people in New York and New Jersey, people who lost everything in the storm.”
One of the evening’s big name performers was Bruce Springsteen. “The Boss” kicked off the concert with a song of inspiration and strength. Here’s a few lines from that song:
Leave behind your sorrows
Let this day be the last
Tomorrow there will be sunshine
And all this darkness past