capitolMaxine Waters tweeted yesterday, “Get ready for impeachment.” Great; I’m all for it…as long as SHE is first on the list, and a bunch more Congressmen and Senators are included!
Race – If I, as a white male, had been told all my life that any failures on my part (to get an education, to prepare adequately for employment, for crimes I commit, for supporting children I sire, etc.) were not my fault, but because of racial animosity, then I probably would be an irresponsible jerk, blaming everyone EXCEPT myself for my social and economic condition. When will Americans stop letting Congress pander to the baser elements of black society – the thugs, punks and gangsters – and start treating them truly as equals…i.e., requiring the same adherence to laws, social standards and personal responsibility as required of everyone else, regardless of race?
ObamaCare – Didn’t a lot of GOP candidates in the House and Senate run on the promise of doing away with that monstrosity? But now they’re just tweaking it, seeking to keep the enormous power (health care is one-fifth of the nation’s economy) for themselves. What about restoring the status quo before ObamaCare, when the federal government had no role in health insurance other than a regulatory one? Isn’t that what you or I would do?
Our national debt is now $20 trilliion, yet our Congress is busy reneging on promises to get rid of ObamaCare, mired in old charges about Trump colluding with the Russians – didn’t seem to bother them when Hillary did it! – expressing their view that the “original intent” position espoused by Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch is “troubling” (thank you, Sen. Feinstein), and after only 90 days talking about impeaching the president.
As Charley Reese, former columnist for the Orlando Sentinel, wrote in an epic commentary: this nation is in the condition it’s in today because 535 people in Washington, D.C., WANT it that way! Congress has repeatedly voted to raise the debt limit instead of cutting the trillions in wasteful programs and spending. As Ronald Reagan said, the closest thing to eternal life on earth is a government program, and we’re seeing just how impossible it is to do away with even a terrible program, once it’s passed into law.
This same Congress, including the GOP, is now doing their damnedest to derail President Trump, because as an outsider he is a threat to their cushy little playhouse, with their own retirement, their own health care, God-only-knows how much loot and perquisites from lobbyists, including from foreign governments and entities, in addition to their federal salaries and benefits.
The U.S. Congress has become an elitist institution operating under the protection of the Constitution it so thoroughly disdains and ignores, so here’s my offering of some things that you and I, the American electorate, can demand of Congress to begin the “fundamental transformation” of said Congress –
- Starting with the 2018 mid-term elections, no campaign donations allow for incumbents. They get all the perks and power of office already, plus free news coverage whenever they want to make an announcement, etc. With a re-election rate of over 95%, no wonder they think of those positions as “theirs,” instead of as trusts granted by the voters based on their performance. The media, which benefits so much from their coverage of politics, can present a list of legislation proposed and how each incumbent voted on it, giving them one paragraph to explain their position. Challengers should be allowed campaign donations, but none from foreign entities or governments (when did that start…and why?!), plus they should also get a paragraph on the media to explain their opposition to the incumbent’s action.
- If there’s a budget deficit of a certain amount (which can be discussed), then no incumbent is eligible for re-election. After all, isn’t it their job to do our business efficiently, to spend our money wisely and with discretion, instead of like drunken sailors on leave after six months at sea? While this has been an Internet meme attributed to Warren Buffet (I’m sure it didn’t come from him), the idea is solid, for it holds them accountable for their performance…how can anyone be opposed to that?
- Any proposed amendments to legislation in the House or Senate are limited to those that pertain directly to the original topic of that legislation. While this seems a no-brainer, Congress finds in this practice protection from having to defend their votes, because they can always rationalize their vote for/against a piece of legislation by pointing to an amendment that benefitted their constituency. Again, a slick trick to avoid being held accountable, the one thing the members of Congress actually excel at.
- Make the Social Security funds off-limits for other appropriations, and require that the only retirement plan available to senators and congressmen is Social Security. Force that change and see how quickly Social Security becomes fiscally solvent again!
- Likewise, no special health care plans for members of Congress. If they have to live like their constituents, perhaps their thinking on such issues…and their votes…will change.
Now, the Congress would have to be forced to make these changes, because each chamber establishes its own rules. That’s right…the same pleas they use to excuse their inaction when they don’t want to take a stand on a controversial issues, “Well, the House/Senate rules require that we….” The main thing that’s needed here is a return to the people’s oversight of Congressional actions, and this would require that voters of all political philosophies join together to force Congress to make these changes or be voted out of office.
More transparency, greater accountability for job performance…like the old joke about 5,000 lawyers at the bottom of the ocean, it’s a good start!
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