Regardless of one’s party affiliation or political leanings, Charles Krauthammer has articulated with characteristic clarity the credibility gap that threatens Barak Obama’s campaign.
In Torah philosophy, dibur — speech — is the bridge between thought and action. Thoughts unspoken dissipate and come to nothing. Similarly, words that neither stem from actions nor lead to action might as well have never been spoken. What better example do we have than election year promises?
As we begin to reflect upon our own actions in preparation for Rosh HaShonah, let us consider that talking about change is not enough — we have to articulate how we need to change through viduyi, the spoken confession of when and how we have stumbled. We then have to implement a concrete strategy for change if our intentions have any chance of fulfillment. Without both reflection on the past and a strategy for the future, there is no true repentance, without which there can be no change.