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Caution: 2008 May Be Hazardous

This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

A year ends, another one begins - and where are we going?

The political campaigns rattle away about what's gone wrong and how things will be different. The economy teeters toward recession and we cross our fingers it will somehow regain its balance. Our homes, the biggest investments many of us have, are not worth what they were a year ago. The price of a college education keeps going up.

And the world... well, the world is a troubled place. Assassinations, suicide bombings, wars without end. Who will lead us? Who has the answers? If you feel like you're waiting to be rescued, help is probably not on the way. And if it does come, it might not arrive in time to save you.

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These days will require a little more courage. We'll need to pare down, spend less, save more and pay attention to the people running for parks commissioner and for president.

Participate. Vote. That's how our parents survived the Depression and a world war. Are we not made of the same stuff?

Harry's daily commentary can be heard on many CBS Radio News affiliates across the country.
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