Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Oh, that we could vote Ann Romney

Ann Romney’s speech at the Republican Convention convinced me that we’ve got the wrong Romney on the ticket.  Not only is she a much more engaging and convincing speaker than her husband, I think she’s better qualified to be president.

Thank about it.  She’s successfully run a multi-million dollar household for 43 years.  She’s managed the interests of six divergent, high achieving males, keeping them safe, moving them forward, on a budget.  Sure, it might have been a big budget, but so is America’s. 

It always irritates me when people say the U.S. should be run like a business.  It’s not anything like a business.  It was not created to maximize profit.  You can’t sell off the Coast Guard because it’s not producing.  The U.S.A. is much more like a family.  Maybe we should be looking for someone with that kind of experience.

In running a household like the Romney’s you don’t have direct control over income.  Mitt’s doing that.  Your job is to keep the family functioning, not profiting.  There is no up-side to sickness.  Food and travel are lost costs.  You can’t fire one of your kids.  You can’t split, divest or outsource.  You simply can’t do many of the things venture capitalists do to create wealth.

Compassion, understanding, compromise – it’s a shame our political system doesn’t reward what we actually need in our leaders.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Review: The Long Walk: A Story of War and the Life That Follows

Something for everyone.  That is one of those phrases that’s both a come-on and a warning.  It’s a solid pitch, but to the savvy it can mean mediocrity.  There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ in anything, especially art and literature.  Mostly.  Brian Castner’s The Long Walk: A Story of Warand the Life That Follows is so fully open and honest that it really does have something for everyone, because it’s about everything.

And not everything as in throw enough spaghetti against a wall and some is bound to stick.  This memoir is about a man’s life after returning from war and how his experiences ripple through each moment and all concerned.  It is enlightening, up-lifting, spooky, funny and sad.  Never in that order and all the time. 

I loved the book for its details and its completeness, but I love a lot of books that I never bother to write about.  This one is special.  I like literature that focuses a spotlight on people, places and troubles.  This book does the opposite.  It shines a huge arc lamp on entire life, glaring, unfocused and subsequently quite illuminating.