Let’s Get Political

I’m trying to stay away from political posts, because they aren’t much fun, I know. I just have to break and put one more up. I was thinking about our country and how it’s set up in a way that virtually nothing ever can be accomplished. If one side has a great idea to make real change, the other side finds fault and does everything to stop it. Think about it. How much has our government really accomplished after 2 centuries? There have been victories here and there, but the big battles still loom. Healthcare. Tax reform. Immigration reform. Civil rights. It seems to never end. We have had these problems on our plate for decades upon decades and not only have they not gotten better, they’ve actually grown worse. Why? Well, here’s a theory of mine, but it makes a lot of  sense to me. Because our government has grown fat and lazy and complacent. I’m not talking just Republicans or Democrats. This isn’t a party issue. This is a politician issue. If you are reading this, please just humor me and think about these issues. Really think about it. You are aware that most congressmen and senators are millionaires/billionaires, right? When it comes to issues of health care, what do they have to say about anything? It’s not an issue that they have to deal with. First, they already have insurance from the government; AKA us! We are paying for their care.  We pay their salaries, despite the fact they make millions in the private sector. Those guys are never going to  have to deal with the reality of healthcare like we do because they can afford the best of care for the rest of their lives. How can they effectively legislate when they have no idea what it’s like to be in our shoes? Simple answer is they can’t. I don’t care what sob story they may have about how they worked their way up from humble beginnings. Where ever they came from doesn’t matter. Right now they are wealthy and over-privileged. Why do we allow wealthy men and women to rule over us like they were kings? Why do we allow this to go on? I think in ways we’ve also become complacent. We don’t fight like we used to. We roll over when we see the injustice and just accept that we can’t fight city hall, but that’s wrong. We can fight. We only have to choose to.

My broad plan would be simple. Take it all away. No more salaries for any congress members who make more than fifty thousand a year in the private sector. No more health benefits. They have to go and get their own insurance through the ACA just like everyone else in this country. Those who sit upon the seat of power have an obligation to live like their constituents. How else would they know their struggle? How would they know what they need? What they want? Any one who really cares about doing the job of running this country would accept these terms. Our politicians should not live above us in their ivory towers, seemingly immune to the same standards we are all  held to. They need to be part of our communities. They need to be us.

Where is our power BTW? They can hand down laws to tell us what to do, but where is our power to tell them no? Where is our voice? We get to vote every four years? Is that it? NO! The only way to get real change in the government would be to employ the ideas outlined above. That’s the only way they would ever care; if they were impacted as well. I’m tired of being told how to live by some exclusive club of millionaires. I wish there was some other way to make this endless waltz end, but there really isn’t. The only way we’d see real change would be to cut the purse strings and force them all to live in the real world with the rest of us. If you are reading this and agree, at least on the concept of this post, pass it along. Share it. Wake up the people! We do have a voice and we can be heard but only until we all speak together! Think about what I’ve said. Really think about it. How okay are you with a bunch of old, rich men sitting on Capitol Hill in their wood paneled offices with their personal staffs, making up the laws of the land not for the good of the people, but for the good of their contributors? Maybe this is a cynical and oversimplified view, but the fact is ‘Money talks. Bullshit walks’. Most people never find a ‘side’ to an argument until after they’ve been impacted by the problem. These politicians can’t legislate because they don’t know what it is to be  us. To be a paycheck away from losing your home. To sacrificing more than you can bare to keep food on the table and your young ones healthy and happy. They have nannies and personal assistants. They have snot nosed college kids lining up around the corner to be their interns, also known as academic slaves. This is wrong! They are civil servants. They are here to serve us, not the other way around. If you’re not one of ‘them’ then great. Happy for you, but the fact is most of Congress and the Senate work like this and everyone knows it. It’s just about time that we all did something about it.

Election Day 2014

The day to clean house has come and gone and it looks like the voters decided to not change all that much. After all the drama and poor decisions and disasters in our nation’s capital, people seemed to have completely missed the point. I’m actually quite surprised at some turn outs. Rick Scott has been re-elected in Florida, thereby maintaining its status as worst state in the country. He adopted a dog to win one of his campaigns and then returned the poor thing after winning. I’m sorry, but that one instance of inhumanity is all I need in order to know what kind of man he is, and that anyone would want him to run their state baffles me. Many other Repub incumbents are keeping their jobs, for some unknown reason. Or maybe there is a reason. Too many people going to the voting booth informed only by rumors or baseless opinions from others. People are just too lazy to research the candidates. They usually will just vote for the guy they voted for last time. That would explain a lot of the repeats I’m seeing tonight. Makes me wonder what’s worse. No vote, or an uninformed vote. Take a look back at all the trouble the Repubs have dragged us through over the past five or six years. A shut down. A credit downgrade. Another batch of wars we’ll never pay off. And then, our president gets tagged as the scapegoat for the woes we now face, when he actually has dragged us up from the muck left by the guy before him. He’s grown our economy, reduced our debt and unemployment but so many people will never know that because they either don’t believe it or just plain won’t hear about it because it’s one of those things you really need to research. If you say that this country is in pretty bad shape now and that’s on Obama, I got news for you. You should check out what shape we were in before Obama. We had a negative GDP. We were bleeding money on a daily basis and our stock market was at its weakest. Today, our debt has been cut (Yes, it has. It’s still huge, but it’s less now than it was six years ago) We have enjoyed a long period of job growth in the private sector. You don’t like how the president has been doing his job? Well, I applaud his work. Especially when you factor in that what he’s had to do, he’s done not only with no support from Congress, but actual opposition from them. He’s been fighting the right wing every step of the way. If you wanted a better country now, you should have voted for representatives who would work WITH the president rather than the ones who chose to declare a war on him. And today, many voters have ensured that we are in for years of more madness. More right wing whackos getting the high sign so we’re going to have people who believe that the Earth is only a few thousand years old and man magically appeared one day setting the rules for the rest of us. It seems like Mitch McConnell and his cohorts could all gather in the street and murder puppies and babies in broad daylight and Obama would be blamed for it.
It also cuts both ways. There are some blights on the left. Gov. Jerry Brown got re-elected tonight and I have no idea why. The only good thing he did was stand up against Prop. 8. After that, it’s been terrible. Rising taxes and we’re still no closer to legalized marijuana. I just would like it legalized for the tax money. With the tax money this state could get from that it would actually put us in the black and Brown could continue with his idiotic projects without dumping the expense on the taxpayer. I mean, really? Was anyone paying attention to what was happening to this state at all?
Maybe after reading this you may think I’ve lost faith in the system and that’s not true. I still believe it can work. It has before. I feel it’s sad that the people who HAVE lost faith in the system are the ones we just elected. They don’t care about you or me or this country. They’re just loading up the lifeboats and then waiting it out until retirement. I’ve always felt there need to be changes. Politicians should be paid the median average income from their district. They should have to live on the same level as those they represent. I really don’t think they should be paid at all, really. It used to be that they weren’t, and now they really don’t need to be paid. They’re all already rich. How many schools could be saved with one paycheck of John Boener’s? I don’t see how our elected civil servants can sleep living as they do while those they are supposed to fight for are struggling. Maybe then we would get people in the jobs who actually want to do the work, not just enjoy the perks.
Well, America. You have spoken. So now, whatever happens after this is on you. God help us all.

Civil Servants?

I think I’m seeing why our country’s government is so F’d up. I mean, not the only reason but a another essential piece of the puzzle. Think on this. A lot, not ALL but a lot, of civil servants are so jaded and passionless in their work, they strive only to make it to the 5 o’clock bell each day. I mean, I know we’re all well acquainted with the ill tempered DMV agent or the bitter postal worker, but this kind of laziness drifts into other realms. It’s alive and well in the police department, fire department and other public offices. There are those in those sectors who only have their jobs because they know how to work the system so that they only have to do the minimum of work and still get paid. If someone new comes along who actually does their job, guess who gets told to curb it?

A lot of folks choose to go into civil service only because it’s such a sweet gig. You get a big fat salary. You get full benefits, paid time off and once you’re in, you’re in for life. This is another instance where I think the benefits of the job is attracting the wrong kind of person. We need people in these jobs who want to do the work, not just wait out the clock until retirement. What is the saying? “The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing” and that’s exactly what’s going on. Maybe some of these people go into these careers with good intentions, but as time plods on, they change. Their passion leaves them and they soon find themselves trying to just get  by without doing too much work and then when others come along who do their job well, they are exposed and instead of getting their act together and working, they pressure the new people and get them to fall into line.

The sad thing is that this mentality reaches higher than I would care to admit. The inner guts of our government is just a bunch of levels of buck passing and work dodging. People want the big salaries and fringe benefits, but none of the responsibility. Maybe it’s time we thought about not making the civil service career path so secure. We need people in these offices who want to do what they were hired to do.

Shut it down!

Wow. It happened. They really did it. First day of government shutdown. As if things weren’t bad enough already, now this. I’ve been watching this drama unfold over the past few weeks and I have to admit I was a little surprised it came to this. Usually when the Repubs play chicken like this, they blink before going over the cliff, but I guess this time they’re ready to bring us all down in order to keep that black man from winning.

I’ll admit, I wouldn’t mind Obamacare getting delayed for at least one more year. I’m not quite ready to add mandatory medical insurance to the long list of bills I already have. For one, I would be needing a job to pay for said bill.

I’ve been watching the news this morning and I keep hearing the Repubs complaining that the Dems won’t negotiate and I don’t know where that’s coming from because from what I hear, the Dems are willing to negotiate, but since they won’t budge on what the Repubs want, that translates into ‘unwilling to negotiate’.

I’m hearing a lot of outrage over the salaries of congress and the president as well and I agree. Although, wasn’t a law passed last year that stated that if no budget is passed, congress goes without pay? I think they all shouldn’t get paid in the first place. Back in the old days, these jobs didn’t even have salaries. Some were non-paying and others were per diem. These days especially considering many, if not all, congressmen and senators have day jobs that rake in millions of dollars annually. They don’t need this money, yet take it and now that we’ve shut down, are they going to feel the pinch? No. They have plenty of money. They can afford to miss a few paychecks.

I’m more outraged by how this whole debacle isn’t even about what they say it is. It’s the Tea Party flexing their muscles and Boehner allowing a fringe group within his party to hold the entire country hostage despite the fact the president was re-elected on his platform which was predominately about Obamacare. The people wanted it. They voted for it, but these knuckle draggers are acting like little babies, kicking and screaming and basically flushing our economy down the toilet based on their biased and ignorant beliefs. It’s hard for me to argue this whole thing because as I mentioned earlier, I wouldn’t mind a delay on the healthcare bill, at least for a little while, but I do know that it’s already been helping people and I’m sure it will help millions more. I only pray this situation will resolve quickly because my only hope for any financial aid right now lies in the hands of the government, I’m afraid to say, and as long as they’re closed, so am I.