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Monday, January 11, 2016

Maine needs leadership and Governor Paul LePage needs a publicist

In my travels, it's common to meet people who have no idea where Maine is on the map. Geograph challenged people think Maine is really in Canada!  Well,the Canadians are likely relieved about the creation of the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842, because the border  between Maine and Canada became defined by the agreement. Now, Maine has another national issue in the person of our state's controversial governor and the Canadians can say, "Hey, he's all yours!".

While Governor LePage continues to emboril himself in avoildable negativity, the state where "like life should be" serene is embproiled in conflict related to the chief exectuive officer's poor conduct in office.
Maine's "open for business" slogan door might be an "exit", if the Governor can't turn around the negative image he's portraying about the state.

Certainly, this negativity is NOT the way life should be! This old tourism cliche is really getting a work out look, frayed and faded, as a result of the Governor's poor performance.

Maine badly needs inspired leadership. Instead of helping or leading Maine, in recent political news, the Governor has caused a series of problems for himself and the state's legislature. Beautiful Maine is now reported as a state where drug trafficking is epedemic because people from New York and Connecticut, with weird names like "D-money", are impregnating "white women". This is so sad and obviously a gross mis-statement from a man who doesn't acknowledge the beauty of the state's natural resources.

Of course, following harsh criticism, the Governor apologized for his caustic, hurtful and wrong statement. Nevertheless, in so doing, he didn't bother to inspire his constituents to reflect on a "better Maine", a place "open for business", like the marketing slogan reads on the state's border with New Hampshire. 

Evidently, those people named "D-money" have misused the state's marketing logo to their criminal advantage, while Governor LePage has not inspired a noble direction for the state's economy.

Although I've no idea where Governor LePage goes to find his inner self or for inspiration, I'd recommend for him to read "When We Were the Kennedys" by Monica Wood, a Maine writer who now lives in Portland. It's a beautifully written memoire about growing up in Mexico, Maine, a small mill town where almost everyone worked at the Oxford Paper Mills. Governor LePage grew up in Lewiston, Maine, another mill community but a much larger city than tiny Mexico. Yet, Governor LePage will enjoy some of the community comparisoms. Nonetheless, the Governor may find one reality paragraph to be a mirror on his lack of economic leadership, even though I'm sure the correlation wasn't necessarily directed specifically at him. Here's what Wood wrote in the book's epilogue:  "As I drive over the (towns of ) Mexico-Rumford bridge on the way to a house (my sister Anne) has bought, with her groom, the valley opens like a coat....."I was there...." she writes.  "'The sign across the river says New Page, after the investment company that bought out Mead-Westvaco, which bought out Mead, which bought out Boise-Cascade, which bought out Ethyl, which bought out the Oxford (Paper Mill). They've just shut down the Number Ten- termprarily; again---another two hundred jobs gone."  

Instead of creating controversy, Governor LePage should seek out the consultation of a publcist to help him with his public image. Meanwhile, I'd plead for the governor to lead, rather than react. Maine is supposed to be open for business, but the econimic door seems to be the exit rather than an entrance.

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