The Waxman Report
The Waxman Report
How Congress Really Works
Twelve, Paperback, 9780446519267, 249pp.
Publication Date: July 28, 2010
For four decades, Waxman has taken visionary and principled positions on crucial issues and been a driving force for change. Because of legislation he helped champion, our air is cleaner, our food is safer, and our medical care better. Thanks to his work as a top watchdog in Congress, crucial steps have been taken to curb abuses on Wall Street, to halt wasteful spending in Iraq, and to ban steroids from Major League Baseball. Few legislators can match his accomplishments or his insights on how good work gets done in Washington.
In this book, Waxman affords readers a rare glimpse into how this is achieved-the strategy, the maneuvering, the behind-the-scenes deals. He shows how the things we take for granted (clear information about tobacco's harmfulness, accurate nutritional labeling, important drugs that have saved countless lives) started out humbly-derided by big business interests as impossible or even destructive. Sometimes, the most dramatic breakthroughs occur through small twists of fate or the most narrow voting margin. Waxman's stories are surprising because they illustrate that while government's progress may seem glacial, much is happening, and small battles waged over years can yield great results.
At a moment when so much has been written about what's "wrong" with Congress-the gridlock, the partisanship, the influence of interest groups-Henry Waxman offers sophisticated, concrete examples of how government can (and should) work.
Joshua Green is a Strategist at digital strategy firm Undercurrent. With a PhD in Media Studies, he has managed research projects at MIT and the University of California. He is author (with Jean Burgess) of YouTube: Online Video and Participatory Culture (2009, Polity Press).
"A very readable insider's account of [Waxman's] 35 years in the House... the explanation of the workings of a widely misunderstood government body is a public service from a committed civil servant."—Publishers Weekly
A welcome look at the internal workings of the legislative branch-- essential for political junkies.—Kirkus