A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Jamie Ruehl: It’s springtime in Kentucky — and time to see through the messge of the Beshear show

This past week it felt like we turned a page. At my house we opened the windows to get a comfortable and cleansing cross-breeze. The sun is noticeably rising earlier in the morning, and our landscape is getting greener. I even saw a bat flitting through the evening sky at dusk while our kids played with neighborhood friends. My early-morning routine includes a 3-5 mile run. The amount of people I see on my route has more than doubled in the last two weeks! It feels like we are finally on the other side of Winter.

It also feels like we are finally on the other side of the pandemic. The prediction of a COVID Winter blitz never materialized. Sure, there were seasonal illnesses, but the hospitals didn’t see the ill-forecasted surges (despite almost no masks and an overwhelming majority of people not getting ‘boosters’). I don’t say that to minimize anyone’s loss. Death hurts and I’ve felt it’s sting, but death is a season of life that none of us are going to escape. As I recall, the author Isaac Asimov said, “Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It is the transition that is troublesome,” and our state is in a transition. I walk through hospitals on the weekends. Recently, I’ve seen much more optimism on faces of the patients, visitors and hospital staff. Across Northern Kentucky the energy in the air has been wonderful.

Jamie Ruehl grew up in Erlanger. He graduated from St. Henry District High School, earned a degree in business administration from Xavier University, served the US Army on an ROTC Commission in 2001, attaining the rank of Captain and serving overseas. Back home, he graduated from Northern Kentucky University’s Executive Leadership and Organizational Change Master’s Program in 2018. He served as a Law Enforcement Officer for 8.5 years and was inducted into the American Police Hall of Fame. He has been a staff insurance adjuster since 2019 with a large carrier headquartered in Cincinnati. He is attempting to be the best possible husband to his wife of 15 years and best possible father to their 3 children. They live in Edgewood with their two dogs. He is a life-long distance runner.

As Spring presents itself in the Commonwealth, I see new candidates for Governor sprouting up through the Bluegrass. I’ve been privileged enough to speak with a couple of the candidates who hope to represent Republicans after May in the Governor’s race. Those conversations ranged from respectful dialogue and consideration by the candidate to bombastic claims bordering on ranting (I’ll let you use your imagination and guess which candidate used which type of engagement). On the other side, our current Governor is trumpeting his “successes” preparing for a gritty gubernatorial race. I guess Governor Beshear doesn’t want all of us to remember how he unnecessarily shuttered our schools, businesses, state parks, and summer camps for years with Executive Orders in line with the far-left policies of states like California and on par with Marshal Law. Hope springs eternal, especially if he can influence the narrative with daily “Team Kentucky” press releases and emails.

In that light, let me quote the movie, The Producers, 2005 rendition; when Hitler sang “Oh, it ain’t no mystery, if it’s politics or history. The thing you gotta know is, everything is show-biz!” (yes, please re-read the title of this column to the tune of “It’s Springtime for Hitler and Germany”) And what a show Andy is putting on for all to see.

Which show are you watching? Are you watching more than one show? Are you investing any time reading about our future leadership? Have you been paying attention to our representatives and the Bills they are trying to pass in Frankfort? I think springtime is the perfect time to clean out the cobwebs and malaise that may have formed over the dark Winter months. Time to rejuvenate your civic spirit by shedding light on our elected officials’ stances and decisions.

We have much to be optimistic about in the Commonwealth. Our Legislature is run by a super majority (on both sides of the House) that tempers our current Governor’s penchant for extreme far-left policies. Our AG, Daniel Cameron (who garnered 113-thousand more raw votes than Andy Beshear in the 2018 general election) is defending our most innocent lives in the Commonwealth. Cameron has brought back to that office a logical response to issues, instead of the emotional over (or under) reactions of his predecessor. We are starting to see our Representatives’ policies of building a business-friendly environment in Kentucky bear fruit in the form of national/international investments. Companies such as Ford, Amazon, Fidelity Investments, and Ascend Elements Inc (just to name a few from a long list) have and continue to invest in our state creating thousands of good-paying careers. Things are looking up for Kentucky.

It is almost comical to see our Governor “put on a show” presenting the narrative that he is somehow responsible for any of this economic advancement in our Commonwealth. Those of us who pay attention see: Companies nationwide are fleeing states that enact the type of policies and executive orders pushed by Andy Beshear. Look at California as a state that exemplifies Big Government (aka Andy Beshear’s desired state). According to the Hoover Institution, 153 corporations relocated from California in 2021 alone. Our Governor (on his election website) recently cites “the best two year job creation in history” in Kentucky. While he flashes that grandiose headline, his publications conveniently don’t mention that the majority of those “created jobs” are actually people finally being able to get back to work after his mandatory lock downs. His executive orders created the biggest job loss in decades. According to the Community and Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky (CEDIK from UK), from end of year 2019 to end of year 2020, unemployment sky rocketed to 16.9%. Not to mention all the other collateral damage that comes from keeping kids at home for two years and people not being allowed to get prescribed medical exams/screenings. Things are starting to look up now for our state, but the Governor doesn’t get to steal the credit.

Dogwoods are blooming and Spring Break is upon us. Many of our youth use Spring Break to plan and prepare for productive Summer Breaks. I ask you: Have you noticed who enables their entrepreneurial spirit more? A restrictive government that thinks they know best? A Beshear government that champions setting high taxes on our income, pushes for inflating costs with high minimum wages and then doles out resources as they see fit? Or a free market where hard work and risk-taking are rewarded with profit and the cascading job creation associated with it?

The Andy Beshear show is covering up our budding flowers of business in darkness with COVID lock downs, heavy taxes and high spending.

It is Springtime for Kentucky. I respectfully urge you to see through the Beshear Show.

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One Comment

  1. Kenton Wells says:

    Thank you Jamie Ruehl. I heartily agree.

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