Saturday, March 10, 2012
The case for a bigger Congress...
Brian Flynn in this article writes a few things that I have been thinking also for a long time about our government. While it may sound contradictory for me to go along with his thinking since I have long been a proponent along with Ron Paul for smaller, more effective and focused government...I think there is considerable merit in Mr Flynn`s writ. When only 10% of Americans approve of their government, it is time for an overhaul.
Here are a few summaries that I agree with from the article...
"Congress no longer represents the will of the people, and it hasn't for a very long time."
It is quite obvious that corporations and big money interests have bought the votes in Congress for decades now. The actions of Congress and even the Presidency are now bought and paid for in back room deals all over Washington DC and beyond. There are multitudes of well documented examples of this I won`t even take time to detail here. If you doubt this statement, I will advise in another separate writ.
" Self-interest and power. It is in the interest of individual members of Congress and the two political parties to maintain this status quo."
You are seeing more often congressmen coming to office moderately wealthy, and leaving office much wealthier, and the already wealthy having much more power and influence. How does this happen? Well, number 1, Congress continues to vote themselves the best pension, health and retirement plans of any job in the world...not available to anyone else in the country. If you serve only 2 weeks, you are in for life! If we simply forced Congress to live under the same plans they set up for the rest of us...or fund their own private programs from their own funds LIKE THE REST OF US...this would change the kind of people we see ATTEMPTING to represent us in Congress. Beyond that, these positions should not be full time jobs or "careers". They should be "service related" or looked at more like a "Board of Directors" for the country. Only truly successful people should be leading our country...not "wannabes".
" Although roughly 40% of Americans describe themselves as "independent", Washington continues to be driven by the right- and left-wing believers who form the base of each of the parties, resulting in acrimony and stalemate."
It always baffles me when I mention the need for a multiple party system in the USA and a majority of my fellow Americans reject out of hand the idea or say "it will never happen". Obviously we have grown up to believe that only a Republican or Democrat is qualified to be in government or be President of the USA. People get the government they deserve by supporting these antiquated and ineffective methods of government. Our country and world has outgrown these limited ideals of Democrat or Republican ideas. Within each party there is tremendous conflict and lack of focus because one party cannot contain all the disparate ideas and ethnicity now making up our huge country. With 40% independents...we have outgrown the two party system...and it is time for we the citizens to demand changes to the system that will more fairly allow independent and less wealthy citizens to run for their representative government. We need more voices, not fewer, in the democratic process.
" It is ridiculous that a member must be "present" to cast a vote in Congress in 2012."
To make governing more fair and balanced, we need a larger representative body to represent everyone's interests. We don`t need hordes...but perhaps 3000 representatives would make government much more democratic and put less power in the hands of any individual congressman. With today`s technical capabilities for online voting, online conferencing and access to data anywhere you are in the world...it truly is "ridiculous" that a member must be physically present to vote in Congress. It would be much more effective...and representative...if the congressperson spent more time WITH their constituency hearing and responding to the needs and views of their electorate instead of the PACs and moneys special interests who run in and out of their offices in DC with campaign contributions. While we are at it, every candidate should have the same budget and rules under which to run for office. We need to get the money...and the congressman...out of DC...and put both back in their localized state where they belong.
"It's time for: "House 3000: The Congressional Reformation Act of 2012". Who's in?"
I basically am there...as long as the rules and inside "racketeering" within our government are changed as well. We need more people, with better ideas, who don`t serve for the money...to be determining and governing the world`s largest economy and military. We the people pay for all this...we the people should be determining all of this. We cannot wait for this to be Congress` idea...they will never propose or vote for it. It is time for a national referendum on electoral and government changes of this nature..and if need be, some amendments to the US Constitution.