AMERICA’S FRUSTRATION

Audio-book Review
By Chet Yarbrough

(Blog:awalkingdelight)
Website: chetyarbrough.com

Do Not Ask What Good We DoDo Not Ask What Good We Do

By Robert Draper 

Narrated by Holter Graham

Robert Draper is a freelance writer with a political heritage, if not pedigree, as the grandson of Leon Jaworski, the lead

LEON JAWORSKI (1905-1982)
ROBERT DRAPER

prosecutor of the Watergate scandal.  “Do Not Ask What Good We Do” is an inside look at the 2011 U.S. House of Representatives.

Unless one avoids newspapers, shuns the world-wide-web, fails to listen to the news, or lives on another planet, they know the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate are dominated by the Republican Party.  What is not as widely known is who the members of the House of Representatives are; particularly, the freshman congressman that makeup approximately 30% of the body.  Robert Draper spends two years of his life investigating House members to enlighten the general public.

GOVERNMENT

For those who may not be familiar with American government process, nothing gets done in Congress without a majority agreement of each of the houses of Congress.  If either the House of Representatives or the Senate has a majority that says no, legislative action is either delayed or abandoned.  Bills do not get passed; debt limits do not get raised; budgets do not get balanced, and the national government stalls, with consequence for every American and most countries of the world.

NEIL GORSUCH (FIRST SUPREME COURT JUSTICE APPOINTED BY A SIMPLE CONGRESSIONAL MAJORITY FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THE HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES.)

Because the House of Representatives’ members are elected every two years (rather than the six years for Senate’ members), they represent a constituency that reflects more current opinions of politically influential factions that get people elected.

Draper successfully provides a picture of the current makeup and position of many members of the House.  He proffers no opinion about the correctness or wrong-headedness of individual members but exposes beliefs and prejudices of individual members by recounting personal interviews and noting public positions taken by House’ members.  It is the readers or listeners that will come away from Draper’s book with their own opinion about the House of Representatives and its individual members. One doubts “Do Not Ask What Good We Do” will change opinions but it reveals why Congress has become dysfunctional.

The following YouTube vignettes are some of the names of congressman and congresswoman “bright lighted” in Draper’s book. Though a number are no longer serving, they exemplify the dysfunction that plagues American politics.

Contrary to the ability this YouTube vignette suggests, Weiner’s twittering indiscretion exemplifies the hubris that often accompanies limited human success.

Congressman Kevin McCarthy:   <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/Ol8PMPUrEj0” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>iframe>

Congressman Eric Cantor:  <iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/-4M63xaswWA” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>iframe>

Congressman John Dingell:  <iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/t_VqTQiQsp4” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>iframe>

Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford:  <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/R7046bo92a4” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>iframe>  http://www.youtube.com/embed/RdmVFW2WcQY” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Congressman Blake Farenthold:  http://www.youtube.com/embed/B_hCb8XNETA” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Congressman Eric Cantor:   <iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/4O_AkcwoFwk” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Congressman Pete Sessions:  <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/kcFt7x7paB8” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Congressman Paul Labrador:  <iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/HiI2o7xbzy0” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Congressman Jeff Duncan:    <iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/7FgA52q8zVk” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

This book may be inferring that what is happening in government now has happened before but, even if true, it does not lessen the frustration most Americans feel about their elected representatives and their legislative inaction.

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6 thoughts on “AMERICA’S FRUSTRATION”

  1. you are right in what you have said. i was only thinking this the other day but i think i will now dig a little deeper.

Always good to hear from you!