These are the days of miracle and wonder

I’m not American, I didn’t cast a vote in the Nov. 4 election, and I’m not especially partisan (nor is this blog remotely political). I just wanted to make a very brief entry here about the courage to innovate.

All of us have said, at one time or another, that there’s no point in trying to break the pattern — we can’t change our career, our law firm, our faculty, our company, our whatever. We tell ourselves to be realistic: we can’t get past the entrenched interests, irrational biases or suffocating inertia that stand in our way.

That excuse just lost a lot of its power. It’s now recorded fact and history that all these things can be overcome. The unconventional can prove wise, the remotest odds can be surmounted, the unprecedented can become precedent — and president. The world now has an astonishing template and argument for innovation; no matter your politics or nationality, you’re the beneficiary.

Twenty years ago, our parents would never have believed it. Twenty years from now, our children will take it for granted. But right now, it’s our tremendous fortune to stand right on the equilibrium between “It can never happen” and “It can happen,” and to marvel at it. Take a moment to revel in a game-changing victory for the courage to innovate — the courage to try.

Then go make some precedents of your own. It can happen. It just did.


  1. Rayna


    I never thought I’d see the day, to be honest. And you are right – it sure does prove that all things are possible.


    PS – LOVE the headline :-)

  2. Doug Cornelius

    Jordan –

    The ballot in my state included:

    a black man for president
    a gay congressman
    a Vietnam veteran who threw away his medal to protest the war
    a decriminalization of personal use of marijuana

    All of them won. A remarkable time indeed.

  3. Jesse C.

    What a fascinating take on this moment in time, Jordan. To recognize the impact of it on the prospect of innovation in our own lives brings even more meaning to a special time.

    You’re absolutely right that America’s choice can inspire us all.

  4. Mary Abraham

    Jordan –

    Thanks for a wonderful post! This has been an extraordinary few hours. Hopefully, once the euphoria has died down, the analysis will help people understand just how carefully the Obama campaign planned and executed their innovation. He has given us inspiration and an example of what it takes to achieve real change. Let’s hope this is only the beginning of many good changes to come.

    – Mary

  5. EdK

    I hope this serves as proof that American’s by and large are not racists. There are, without a doubt, racists and career race-baiters, but they both have to shut up today.

  6. Anne

    Beautifully put: this is a “hinge” moment in the history of the world, and while it’s hardly the end of stupidity, self-interest, wilful blindness, and ignorance in public office (or in private, either), the election of Obama demonstrates the power of forward thinking when allied with determined action. Even more, this election reveals the profound potential so often locked within the electorate: to all those who sat out the recent Canadian election because “my vote doesn’t count”, this election shouts a thunderous “yes, it does!” People are yearning for change, longing to be part of making things better, of passing on a better world to their children, of leaving a legacy of hope, and achievement. It is possible to make that sort of change, and we have at least some idea of how political action can help set the stage in which it can take place.

    Precedents are too often used as sea-anchors: ties to a dead past, dragging us away from innovation and from creative response and threatening the entire enterprise with disaster. Well said, Jordan, that the power — and the responsibility — to make precedents is always with us!

    Thanks for a great article.

  7. Craig Niedenthal

    Jordan: Short but so on point. I woke up this morning which such an amazing….and different feeling. ONe I have never felt before. I think you put it into words. The absolute realization that yes….anything is possible…if you believe in it and you pursue it with all you have. Thanks for the post.

  8. Dee

    Yes there is a feeling in the air that you can do anything – create, innovate, rethink, change, move, leave, renew. Just get going. Good stuff.

  9. Amy Derby


    First time reading your blog… and what a great introduction!

    I love what you said about “it’s our tremendous fortune to stand right on the equilibrium between “It can never happen” and “It can happen,” and to marvel at it,” because that’s SO true.

    Plus, the 20 years ago and 20 years into the future thing. I think of when Ellen DeGeneres came out on her show in the 90’s and everyone went crazy. Now look at tv… We think nothing of it!

    And cell phones… Right now, my mother is the only person I know who doesn’t own one.

    So yes, maybe in 20 years social media and blogs will in the hands of lawyers as readily as their blackberries are today. :-)

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