As an occasional letter writer to my Member of Congress-- Speaker of the House, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi-- I was invited to her New Year's Celebration at Delancey Street Town Hall on the Embarcadero this afternoon. Other years it's been at one of the major hotels. The last one I went to was at the Fairmont, just after she became Speaker two years ago. I saw her this morning on what must have been a taped Sunday morning talk show.
It was a beautiful afternoon as I walked the Embarcadero from Market Street. Delancey Street was a good location. The food was your typical large party selection of hors d'oeuvres. The program started with an introduction by Speaker Pelosi's very pregnant daughter. Then the San Francisco Boys' Chorus sang America the Beautiful. They're leaving next week to sing at Barack Obama's inauguration. Nancy Pelosi spoke in conventional platitudes, but with the severe economic crisis at hand, her words had added power. Her mantra was: "We need action. We need action now!" On leaving we all were given a copy of Speaker Pelosi's new book Know Your Power.
With the sizeable increase in Democratic majorities in both houses, there's a real opportunity for significant action this session, particularly with the leadership of the Obama administration. Certainly the country needs thoughtful, creative, and legal approaches to the multiple problems we face. Things are so bad, that the electorate should be relatively patient to give the new administration a fighting chance!