Sunday, December 28, 2014
The Way Forward by Paul Ryan
I will not commit to belonging to one political party or another. I've always seen myself as an independent, but lately I totally dislike politics and politicians. I know things are more complex than what I see, but if anything else in government is like what happens when "big guys" step into education, then I think Washington DC makes more messes than it fixes.
I try to stay informed and used to enjoy the lunch hour discussions at school; for awhile there was quite a mix of viewpoints there. I miss that dialogue but I've found that now most people are just fed up with our government officials. Often that makes people pick one side or another and stick too rigidly to it. Can't seem to talk about ideas with people anymore. Maybe that's why I occasionally grab a political book to read. However, the main reason I requested Paul Ryan's new book is that he represents the congressional district that I was part of when I was first able to vote. Ryan is from Janesville, Wisconsin, a mere twenty miles from my childhood farm. I expected THE WAY FORWARD would give me a look at his Janesville life and it did, but not in the depth that I had expected. The book really lives up to its title and focuses on Ryan's views to rescue the United States from its economic/social woes. In doing so, he does often refer to Janesville and its own struggle to recover after the major employer GM closed up. He frequently points out how his Catholic faith has shaped his views and I found his book to be very genuine. He also does a good job explaining how the Republican image of being racially insensitive, big business focused, and hard nosed is a wrong image. Unfortunately what he says about how our government is currently functioning is NOT encouraging.
If this book is meant to be a lead-in to a presidential run, a testing of the waters, then it is very low key. On the surface, his economic ideas seemed common sense to me
and I would hope they would get a chance. Mostly I just liked hearing a Wisconsin guy speak out for our families, our cities, our farms, our state and our country