Reading the Tea Leaves/Martin Rosenfeld

Posted on March 9, 2011

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In a recent op-ed piece, Leslie Gelb, a former journalist and senior government official, wrote a compelling argument about why the US should refrain from aiding the Libyan rebels who are fighting the Gaddafi government. His argument is summarized as follows: We do not know who these rebels are. Who is to say that they may not be as bad, or worse, to deal with than is the incumbent government? We have often bet, historically, on insurgent leaders (Mr. Castro for a short while was the darling of the American media) and were ultimately sorely disappointed.
No one can read the future. The age of prophecy is long over. When contemplating divorce, first think: Will I be better off if I divorce or if I struggle to make sense out of my present situation? I still recall a former mediation client telling me years later that “I wish someone would have told me how much divorce stinks”. If divorce is a definite decision, the next question to ask is whether litigation will really help in resolving difficulties or will it add to the difficulties. We do not know the future. We may feel at the moment of decision that hand-to-hand combat is the way to go. However, will such a decision look as good 5 or 10 years later? Will such a decision help or harm the children? Will such a decision be good for our hopes to move on post-divorce into a brighter future.
Mr. Gelb reminds us of an old aphorism: Be careful about that for which you pray. Your prayer might actually be answered (but be less attractive once its realities arrive). Civility in divorce is one option you need to consider. At the very least, you will be able to sleep at nights once your divorce has become finalized and will not need to second-guess yourself.

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