We narrowly avoided falling over the so called fiscal cliff at the end of 2012 which would have increased everyone’s taxes. The issue was coming at us like a freight train at the end of last year and of course our Congress with their crisis management approach to working for us only narrowly avoided the cancellation of the Bush era tax cuts. In doing so it appeared as though many of the people that work for us in Congress were patting themselves on the back as though they thought that they had really done something special. In reality they simply did the jobs that they were hired to do, barely, so they finally got to work and did something reasonably constructive.
Fast forward a few weeks into 2013 and we see the so called “new” Congress pretty much operating under the same crisis management style with the latest crisis which of course is the debt ceiling. This is an issue that rears its ugly head now and again the last time being in 2011. Back then we went through the fiscal gymnastics of reaching an agreement on raising our nation’s debt ceiling and naturally we have to do it again.
This round of the fiscal debt ceiling feud has been talked about in the media over the past few months but not widely talked about because of the aforementioned fiscal cliff drama that Congress had created and here we go again. The Senate has not passed a standard budget in four years but they are required to do so every year which leads to the logical question, “What are we paying them for?” It is said that there is a plan that will be agreed upon to raise the debt ceiling for 3 months which will give the House and Senate the time it supposedly needs to agree upon a long term budget, if they fail to do so they will lose their pay.
If the part of the plan where “they may lose their pay” is actually agreed to I can hardly wait to see this one. We may get to witness an even more disgruntled and dysfunctional congress that does allot of finger pointing and blaming each other while they are on the road to working for the amount that they typically deserve which is nothing. My bet is that if this is a greed to we will see the most cooperative and fluid budget being passed as quickly as possible so they can continue to suck money off of the American taxpayer receiving their pay without interruption. We would see the most sickeningly loving congress in history that results in the most amazing amount of bipartisanship and hand shaking that we have ever seen.
I’m a huge supporter of congressional term limits. I wouldn’t even mind former congress people receiving a monthly stipend that is equal to their pay for six month or so after they have left office so they can acclimate themselves back into the work force. I’m also up for continuing their medical benefits for the same six months. This of course is versus today’s system where they have voted themselves the same salary upon retirement, for life, that they were receiving while they were in office while also continuing to receive better medical coverage than most of us could ever imagine, also for life, coverage that most of us couldn’t afford it were available to us.
Maybe this will start a new trend where our politician employees will be paid based on performance. If we did this it would at least make a small debt in our budget deficit because it is very likely that many of them would not get paid or at least not get paid that much. The savings that we would receive very likely would show us how little return we are getting for the current dollars that we are spending for their lack of services