Sarah Palin: Wooden's 'Pyramid' Roadmap for Restoring American Exceptionalism

After a 2013 in which she took on a leadership role in everything from special elections to the culture war, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin is starting 2014 with a bang. On New Year's Eve, Palin revealed a bold resolution using one of the greatest men sports has ever known as something of an inspiration.

As a former high school state champion basketball player herself, it's no wonder Palin admires the legendary coach John Wooden. He accomplished things at UCLA that will never be duplicated. Wooden won ten NCAA national championships in a 12-year span, including a run of seven straight titles. Wooden also authored a lecture and a book about the "Pyramid of Success," building blocks for winning at basketball and at life. Palin took Wooden's philosophy to heart.

Along with a picture of her signed Wooden pyramid, Palin posted this message on Facebook on New Year's Eve: 

"Here's my copy of Coach Wooden's famous pyramid, which I mentioned on Fox tonight. My resolution, in addition to eating more meat, is making the federal government as irrelevant as possible in our lives and living out Coach Wooden's "Pyramid of Success." Friends, considering how screwed up some things are today, I encourage all individuals to join in this resolution to live 2014 with industriousness and self-discipline and selflessness so that we, collectively as a nation, can restore America to her EXCEPTIONALISM!"

Wooden, like Palin, was someone who had his priorities straight. He was great at what he did, but he never put himself above others. Like Palin, Wooden was a devout Christian. Faith was on top of his pyramid. In the book Wooden: A Lifetime of Observations and Reflections on and Off the Court, he was quoted as saying, "If I were ever prosecuted for my religion, I truly hope there would be enough evidence to convict me." Palin gets some of her wit from Wooden. 

While Wooden used his pyramid to motivate players, Palin is calling on citizens to look to it for guidance as we engage in a battle far more important than any basketball game. The stakes are high and the issues are serious, but the ideas in the pyramid are really quite simple. Palin contends that's all it will take to get our society back on track. Each of us needs to take self responsibility. If we all do our part individually, together we will be stronger than ever. United we will stand.

Things like Honesty, Sincerity, and Cooperation can all be found on the pyramid. Imagine if they existed in Washington? It is up to us to make D.C. listen.

Coach Wooden was able to bring together young men from all types of backgrounds to work harmoniously and succeed. Free spirited Individuals like Lew Alcindor and Bill Walton bought in to Wooden's simple inspirational messages, knowing the often short phrases had much deeper meaning.

Now, it's time for We the People to lace 'em up and get ready for a huge season in 2014. It starts with ourselves. One day at a time. One action at a time. As Palin put it, we need to live with "industriousness and self-discipline and selflessness so that we, collectively as a nation, can restore America to her EXCEPTIONALISM!" Many years ago, Wooden defined "Competitive Greatness" as "Perform at your best when your best is required. Your best is required each day."

The leader of the Bruins had it right. Now, the Mama Grizzly is urging Americans to take a hard look at his words and put them into motion.

A new year has tipped off. Let's all take it strong to the basket for America. Just follow the pyramid. 


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