Saturation advertising over the last few weeks reminds us that on Sunday we honor our mothers. We should all reflect upon the nurture we received from our mothers. This includes the sage advice — Mother’s Rules — imparted to us when we were much younger.

Please consider the enormous problems facing the nation and the world. Pretty much all of them could be prevented, or solved, if we just listened to mom. Therefore, as a public service to all involved in the political world, we apply Mother’s Rules to politics.

If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. This rule is routinely ignored in politics, especially by cable news anchors, political operatives, campaign commercials and politicians in general (and sometimes by us). Let’s try, at least occasionally, to make mom proud.

You’ll catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. In politics, this is called collaboration, compromise and bipartisanship (but we could never understand why anyone would want to catch flies).

Do not live in the past. You cannot change it because life only moves forward. In other words, stop relitigating the 2020 election or the flaws of former presidents.

Tell the truth. It is easier to remember than telling a lie. This sound rule is related to the political axiom, “It’s usually not the crime, but the cover-up.” Just ask Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton if mom is right.

A penny saved is a penny earned. Borrow only as a last resort. Obviously, the hundreds of members of Congress for the last many decades who ran up an unfathomable federal debt ignored this motherly advice.

Treat others the way you want to be treated yourself. And, treat all people kindly. You have no idea what they may be going through. (Recent versions mention karma) For millennia, mothers have lectured about the benefits of kindness. Too bad it doesn’t help with fundraising.

You have the power to change your life. Mom is right about this. But we don’t think she would approve of all the book deals and television appearances from motivational speakers expanding on her advice. 

You can be anything you want to be. This explains why every U.S. senator and governor thinks they should be president.

Wear clean underwear. You never know when you might get in a car accident. For politicians, this means obey the laws and mores of society because you never know when you might be exposed by a whistleblower.

It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation but only a few minutes to lose it. And that rule came even before the immediacy of social media, text messages and the 24/7 news cycle.

Stay away from unsavory people. We can think of presidents, British royalty, senators, congressman, governors, lieutenant governors, state lawmakers, county commissioners and city officials who didn’t listen to mom’s prudent advice.

Make good choices. Choices have consequences. Adherence to this wisdom helps politicos avoid having to repeat the phrase, “I don’t recall” multiple times.

If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you jump too? If followed, this admonition would prevent a lot of lemming-like behavior in the political world.

Don’t be your own worst enemy. You can do better. The unforced errors of stupid personal behavior have destroyed countless political careers.

You made the bed. Now you have to sleep in it. Mom tells us to grow a spine, admit our mistakes, don’t dodge questions from the media or “plead the Fifth.”

Listen to the advice of the person who has nothing to lose or gain from your decision. Many lobbyists don’t like this bit of mother’s wisdom. Almost everyone has an agenda.

If you don’t know the answer, just say so. Adherence to this rule would eliminate much of the political commentary on cable television and social media. The talking heads wouldn’t have much to say.

You should sweep your own front porch before sweeping somebody else’s. Mom advises us to avoid hypocrisy.

The more we hesitate over solving a problem, the bigger it becomes. Immigration and a lot of other issues come to mind. The modern parlance in Congress is “kicking the can down the road.”

Pick your battles. Not everything is worth fighting for. Unless you get on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or watch cable television where everyone fights over everything.

You can’t always change what’s happening, but you can change your attitude. She’s right. The world can be a very tough place. But we can still find happiness.

Moderation in all things. This is critical advice in an era of partisanship and extremism. Following this alone would guarantee some common sense in political deliberations.

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Remember who you are and act accordingly. Even in a heated political campaign.

Look before you leap. Good advice. But don’t just live by the polls.

The quality of your thoughts is determined by what you read. Mom is warning us to avoid the foolish and nonsensical. … So why are you reading Pignanelli & Webb?

Republican LaVarr Webb is a political consultant and lobbyist. Email: Democrat Frank Pignanelli is a Salt Lake attorney, lobbyist and political adviser. Email:

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