Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Mandatory Reading

There are books we read for escape, books we read for mental stimulation, and there are books we read to be better people. Under this last category falls: America, the owner's manual by Senator (and former FL governor) Bob Graham.

The basic point of the book is that we Americans treat civics as a spectator sport. We sit back and watch our politicians enact inane laws, ignore abuses that should be curbed, and lead us with something less than the basic common sense we all hope for. When we have a problem, from something as small as parking issues, to as a large as drunk driving, most of us vent to our friends and family and then shrug it off as something we have to live with, like mosquitoes in the summer.

What Senator Graham does in his book is show how if you have a certain grievance how to figure out which level of government's management it falls under (local, state, Federal) and then takes you step by step on how to air your grievance before the right people and convince them it needs to change.

It was such an inspiring book to read. Immigrants have to take a citizenship test before they can become naturalized American citizens. The rest of us, fortunate to be born into American citizenship, should read this wonderful manual about our amazing, cumbersome, Byzantine government.

More later,


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