The presidential campaign is top news these days. Fair enough. The quest to occupy the most powerful political office in the world is certainly news-worthy.

Looking at the pack of contenders, however, leaves me disillusioned. Who will win their party's respective nomination—the one who most successfully pandered to their party's most radical base? Which one of these individuals will win the general election—the one whose focus groups were most on target or the one whose political consultants conceive the more outrageous smear campaign? Is there a true leader with real vision among the lot?

Is it just me, or do many of you agree that that the reins of our magnificent and storied nation will (again?) be in the hands of a person whose primary interest is creating a personal legacy? Am I being cynical to think that the prime motivation of these candidates is ego and the fulfillment of a personal fantasy?

With these people at the helm, will our nation move forward or backwards? And to think that the policies of this superpower nation have global impact...

But to be honest, our nation has trailblazed the way in so many positive areas: equal rights, government programs that benefit the needy, religious freedoms, to name a few. Most of these initiatives were spearheaded by politicians not very different than the ones we have today. How does this add up?

Here's a cute story that I think explains the dynamic:

The fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Shalom DovBer of Lubavitch, was once conversing with a French-educated self-described intellectual, who explained that he refused to believe in angels or other spiritual entities that cannot be perceived with the five senses.

The Rebbe responded with a parable:

"Two French intellectuals are traveling in a horse-drawn carriage en route to a prestigious academic conference. They occupy their time with scholarly discussions; profound theories and abstruse intellectual concepts abound.

"Now, the horses are dreaming of the hay they will eat when they arrive at their destination. In the unlettered coachman's mind, he is already savoring the spirits he will buy with the paycheck he will receive at the trip's conclusion. And all the while, the passengers' minds drift in worlds unimaginable to the horse and coachman.

"Now," the Rebbe concluded, "the fact that the horses are thinking of hay, does that in any way negate the factuality of the topics the intellectuals are discussing?"

Ironically, the horses and the coachman – notwithstanding their base gastronomical aspirations – are the ones leading the scholars to their convention...

As we get nearer and nearer to the Messianic Redemption the world is becoming a better place. Not because of the leaders, but because of the passengers.

So, fellow passengers, what are we doing today to better the world? Comments welcome!