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Alex Hammer

Donít Look For Trouble, Donít Run From Trouble
By Alex Hammer
Mar 24, 2006 - 5:24:00 PM

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This title, ďDonít Look For Trouble, Donít Run From TroubleĒ, is both my personal and professional motto.

The first part Ė donít be a bully, because there is always a bigger bully out there, and youíll get trampled.

The second part Ė appropriately stand up for yourself, or (again) youíll be trampled.

Politics is requiring a thicker skin than I envisioned. I spoke out against TABOR. Knocked around by the right. I wrote a long and thoughtful researched piece on Dirigo. That doesnít seem to have won me many new friends either.

I believe in dialogue in regard to solving problems, running for office, and generally just forming good connections and bridges in life. With that in mind Iíve participated in some online political forums in Maine.

Blindsided.

In the first in which I was (and am still) involved, things got nasty. An individual from out of state that used to work with my publishing company decided that he wanted to attempt to wreck havoc on my candidacy before it could get more fully entrenched and threw pretty much everything but the kitchen sink at me in that regard. This sounds intentionally vague, those that feel a need to know more details can find them online. Though I was honestly tempted to flee, I stuck it out through frankly brutal conditions and things did improve. Also, the individual running the actual forum (not the same individual as the poster from out of state seeking to wreck havoc) and I over time developed a bit more of a meeting of the minds from where we started, and using that forum is now much more of a pleasure. I respect the forum owner and the participants of the forum for the progress that I feel that we have made.

I was accepted into a couple of other forums and did some postings in one of them. Also, I was also accepted into what is Iím pretty sure the largest, most active political forum in Maine, but that didnít last long.

I was banned. Apparently my political views are not well received by the owner of this forum (Overall in the state they have been very welcomed as weíve received a very significant amount of press acceptance, in print and otherwise, through Maine and also beyond). Itís a big big mess, and not how it is being portrayed by the owner of this forum. Again, some of the details, for those that like misery, are on online.

Because I believe that life is mostly good and I like to work through situations unless they are totally impossible or unhealthy, which often necessitates hanging in there and dealing with issues long after others would have (or have) quit, I would like to be allowed to return to this forum. And no, Iím not a glutton for punishment, I just like to see things through. I didnít look for trouble there, and, in adherence to the second part of the motto, I didnít run when trouble found me.

If elected Governor, I would remain tough and remain strong in the issues that matter in this state.

It still, at 40 years old, surprises me a little bit when life seems unfair, but that is, as it has always been, rather fleeting. For one, it might sound trite and I know it is a well known clichť, but I believe that life is (all things considered) largely and often what you make of it, and, as they say, people are generally going to be pretty much as happy or as unhappy as they decide they want to be.

They also say. Donít let the -------- get you down.

Thatís not bad.

This may or may not have much to do with running for Governor (it depends upon your perspective I guess) but I believe that each of us has a place in life that is carved out for us, or that we carve out for ourselves (not sure which one it is, or both). If you look at it, everyone has their own life with their own set of circumstances, family, job (in most cases) and all the rest of the components of life, and these interact with the same variables in the lives of others.

Kind of complex I guess.

I am running for Governor because I have the desire to do so and because I feel that I have something valuable to offer. Of course the citizens of Maine will reach their own determinations in regard to that. Which brings me to my next point.

Weíre getting decent web traffic (www.hammer2006.com, www.hammer2006.com, www.hammer2006.com, Iím in a light-hearted mood today). I donít know what occurs on other sites (not Maine political sites because weíre the only one I believe with either a blog, www.hammer2006.blogspot.com or a wiki, www.hammer2006.wikispaces.com ) but these pages arenít really being utilized on the site. People seem to (I guess) prefer, on the whole, in larger numbers, more traditional forms of communication and involvement (which we also offer). We try to make the online interactive technologies also attractive. Maybe we have more work to do and maybe the time isnít just yet right (although it may still or increasingly be as the campaign progresses). Weíre reaching a significant number of people overall in this campaign, but as stated in the largest numbers by traditional means. I consider this type of article similar to a blog posting, but many more people will read (apparently, from my experience) an Op-Ed than a blog, even if the content is similar or the same.

They say that people can get cynical in regard to politicians, but being a politician could also easily make one cynical as well. I am a positive person and an optimist and will remain one (Iíve long been committed to that). I donít believe in letting others that you donít agree with their actions define one and determine the way that you go about leading your professional life. I listened to a tape once (well before the campaign) that said, wouldnít it be nice if our heads could just be opened (not literally, Iím sure) and all the knowledge that we need just poured in or imparted in one fell swoop.

Doesnít work that way I guess. Maybe itís a light stream instead, or at times just drop by drop.

Iíve been thinking more and more as events of this campaign unfold about this motto of ďDonít look for trouble, Donít run from troubleĒ. Maybe itís just me but it always seemed to me to have a nice symmetry and balance to it. And helpfulness and even wisdom. Something that you could hang your hat onto as one philosophy of life.

And now, in the midst of this political race, it makes even more sense to me than it ever did before.

Iím sure that each of you may have your own motto. Or more than one.

I am interested to hear what they are.

Alex Hammer is a candidate for Governor of Maine residing in Bangor. The campaign website is www.hammer2006.com, its blog is www.hammer2006.blogspot.com and its wiki is www.hammer2006.wikispaces.com


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