Congratulations on your overwhelming victory! The landslide of votes makes it clear that you have a historic mandate for Change We Need. I, personally, performed a jig of jubilation and glee last night around 10:14 pm, drank some champagne and let out a few Hallelujahs.
Your victory has given hope to so many people. Hope, that we can recover our moral compass from the pool of lies, war, delusion and hatred that we've been soaked in for the last eight years. Hope, when we could scarcely need it more.
Which brings me to the point of my letter. You have won the leadership of a great country hindered by an outdated picture of reality. Over the last fifty years, we've come to expect a certain lifestyle, unlimited energy use, conspicuous consumption, a continously growing economy, the right to work for forty years and then retire for thirty more. And all of these expectations hinge of a tide of ever-expanding cheap energy, a tide which is about to recede.
You've inherited the Presidency of a country drowning in debt, struggling with a crumbling infrastructure of highways, bridges, water and sewage systems, a deteriorating electrical grid, and escalating poverty from foreclosures, job losses, and price inflation. And beyond these immediate crises lurk far greater challenges: peak oil, climate change, an economy and an agricultural system totally dependent on cheap energy, and Nature's inability to cope with much more pollution and resource extraction. We haven't even begun to recognize these challenges.
You've inherited a country on the verge of the Greatest Depression.
How do you address all these simultaneous disasters? How can you possibly meet the inflated expectations of the American people? How can you save us from the cycle of history - a cycle of empires that rise and fall, economies that expand and contract, wealth that builds and evaporates?
You are obviously a man of integrity, with great hopes and plans for our country. My hope is that you will face our problems head-on, and manage the energy descent gracefully and calmly. Tell us the truth. We need to sacrifice. We need to change our ways. We need to forget the culture of status symbols and renew our culture of helpfulness, charity, and community.
You can help us prioritize. Help us keep the best of our world and make the best of ourselves. Help us get more of what we need, and less of what we want. We need health care, education for our children, food on the table and a chance to make meaningful contributions to the world. We don't need a car for every person. We don't need fast food chains on every corner. We don't need to accumulate an insane amount of things, just to sell them in a garage sale 5 years later.
We need hope, we need integrity, we need the truth. You can't make the storm go away, but I believe you can guide us through the storm. Thank you for winning, Mr. President-Elect.