Common Sense

Fair Weather Friends

You want to know when you are on your way out at a company? When people stop coming in to see you at your company.

I'll never forget what happened to a very good friend of mine who went from wunderkind to wondering-about-her job.

There was a time there when she was a rising star. Everyone would suck up to her — that's what you do with stars. Sort of like those protesters, you glob on. But then, something happened.

Corporate politics. A power struggle. Maybe her boss was on the hot seat.

I don't know. She started getting less and less work. Less and less attention.

Suddenly she wasn't a star. People weren't sucking up. They weren't even stepping in to her office. Pretty soon, she didn't even have an office.

She went from grand pooh-bah to grand pariah. Everyone avoided her, even though she had done nothing wrong.

But she kept her focus. She kept her priorities and she moved on to bigger, better things. She never gave up on herself, even though others gave up on her.

I think there's a lesson for the United States here. Let me explain.

Is it me, or have you started noticing since we started this "axis of evil" talk, our so-called friends are getting a little standoffish.

Germany wants a lot more proof before we expand our terror campaign.

France isn't sure it's willing to go along.

NATO is now concerned the U.S. is overstepping itself.

Last I heard, England and Australia were the only ones saying, we're with you.

Yet they were all with us when this terror campaign began.

One after another, they said the same thing, "you're darn tootin' right, George Bush and you can count on us.

But now things are getting dicey, more dangerous, more protracted, more worrisome and they're falling off like flies.

They're not sucking up to us anymore.

Our fair weather friends aren't so fair — they're turning.

I hope we can take a page from my friend, who said, "the hell with you. I'll go my own way, thank you."

She's better off now because she kept her focus on what was important. We'd be better off now doing the same.

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