Why is Congress Hated?

Richard Salbato

There is a lot of anger for government in America right now, but congress is the most hated. They have a 13% approval rate, however most people like their personal congressman or senator. In fact, most people do not even know why they hate congress. The fact is that no matter who they send to congress the system simply does not work. Why?

Have you ever watched C-Span? I watch it a great deal and I donít see how they get anything done. In the Senate you have one man who can block any bill from being voted on and there is nothing anyone can do about it. This one man decides what is voted on, what amendments can be included and when they vote.

In the house a session starts with general speeches and so for four hours congressmen get up and make speeches to an empty house. No one is listening. Then they have lunch. So the first half of the day nothing is done. Then if a bill is presented in the afternoon, it comes forward with hours of speeches on each side of the bill and mostly the bill has never been read by the congressmen.

These speeches go on and on with no one in the house even listening to them. What I am trying to say is that even though people do not know it, it is not the people elected that they are mad at but the system that simply does not work.

When a bill needs to be passed right away and congress is on vacation nothing can happen, simply because they can only vote if present in the house. How stupid is that?Even I can vote without going to a voting booth.

Congressmen and Senators are sent to Washington to write bills and vote on them. How simple is that! Why canít we write bills, publish them on the internet for all to read, and then vote on them no matter where they are in the world by email? Every amendment can be voted on if we did not have to be in the house to vote. Why does a few people decide what amendments can be voted on and what ones cannot.Why do we have to vote on an entire bill or not at all.Why canít we vote for part of the bill and reject the rest.

How it was meant to be!

When the Constitution of the United States was written we did not have telephones, TV or Radio. The writers of the Constitution wanted a government of the people, but all the people could not travel thousands of miles every time some bill had to be voted on, so they came up with a representative democracy. In order of avoid a strong central government and protect states rights they designed the system so that Senators were selected by the States Houses, and Congressmen were directly elected by he people, but only one Congressman for every 30,000 people.

However, because of the Seventeenth Amendment that allows direct election of Senators, and the fact that the house has not grown with the population435 Congressmen for 311,000,000 people or 1 Congressmen for more than 700,000 people, this idea has gotten out of hand.

Now when I wrote the 35 ideas for Contract with America I could not see how we could have 10,000 Congressmen without re-building the house building and the cost would be exorbitant.

Then I thought about the cost and wondered why we even have this cost. A typical Senator or Congressmen has a $250,000 salary and that is not much but --------- they also get millions for their expenses, staffs, travel, living in Washington, in short, everything they spend or can pocket.

Being in Washington, DC they meet all the lobbyists, who help them get re-elected by donating to their re-election campaign and even money for their pocket. Most Federal Government Senators and Congressmen go to Washington with a fixed wealth and come out with millions more wealth. How?

What do Senators and Congressmen do in Washington DC.90% of the Senators or Congressmen are not even in the chamber. Where are they?

They are in closed doors meeting privately with other Senators or Congressmen on how to buy their vote. They say that if you vote for this or that, we will give you this or that. That is how a simple bill of 10 or 20 pages gets to 2000 pages. Not only that but sometimes if a bill gets passed like Ron Paulís bill to audit the Federal Reserve it was simply added to the Health Care bill, and now Ron Paul will not even vote for his own bill because it would imply that he approve the Health Care bill.

I am not against lobbyists because we need their experience to help us with bills, but I would make it a criminal offence for a lobbyist to give money of any kind to a federal worker.

How in the world do we stop all this madness? I have a radical idea that even I thought was stupid but I cannot get it out of my mind because the more I think it out the more I think it solves all the problems in Washington DC. Before I tell you, let me explain a few changes science has given us and how the world is changing.

Scientific Changes

It was only a few years ago when any company was traveling a great deal to buy products or sell products. Often meetings would be held in hotels so that many people could meet together and make policy decisions for the company. Much of that is gone now because of the computer, the phone, and live visual conferences on computers with large screens. Businesses have saved millions of dollars using modern technologies and have cut down on travel. They have also cut down on postage because of emails. The cost of phone calls has drastically been reduced because of new systems. I remember when I was in business and was the first to have a phone in a suitcase so that I was still in touch even when not in the office. This was the start of the new science.

That being said, why does any Senator or Congressman ever have to go to Washington DC?

Radical? I thought so also. However, the more I think about it the more sense it makes. Let us assume we did keep the house at 30,000 people per member. That way I could know my congressman face to face on a personal basis. It would only take me a few minutes to get to his office and talk with him. My congressman represents 13 cities and no one I know has ever met him.

Let us assume he is a Federal Congressman who never went to Washington DC.

1. He would have an office in my city.

2. He would have a phone that was automatically recorded and the tapes kept forever on our district web site.

3. He would have an email account that could not be deleted and everything he wrote or received was kept for all to see on our district web site.

4. He would have a Video Conference Computer System that would allow him to talk with other Congressmen and kept forever on our district web site.

5. He would have a System that allowed him to make speeches on C-Span regarding bills and kept forever on our district web site.

6. He would be on our district web site, where all his votes or bill proposals would be posted and all comments from his voters would be posted.

7. Now, when my Congressman or Senator (or someone else) would present a bill, it would be posted on the web site for a minimum of 72 hours for all to see and comment on. He would vote by email and it would be verified the same way Pay-Pal is verified. All would see how he voted.

8. Considering that we also accept the concept of no comprehensive bills as stated in items 17 and 18 below, every item of every bill will have to be voted on separately even in the Yearly Budget and Military Budget, we would know for sure all his or her loyalty to the Constitution.

Considering the above there is no reason for any Congressman or Senator to go to Washington DC anymore. Congress has the obligation to finance every department in the Federal Government. Note that the finance for the Department of Homeland Security has gone down this year. Would you have agreed to that if you knew it? Note that the Department of Labor has gone up this year. Would you have agreed to that if you knew it?

If you knew that Health and Human Services cost more than the Military, would you be happy? If you knew that the Treasury department has the biggest bills and this is the interest on the debt, what would you think?

How do we get rid of the problem of SSI? I know how, but that is another Newsletter. For now all we need to do is find ways to save America from a debt that we cannot sustain and may bankrupt America in the next two, three or four years. Bankrupt, yes! Because when no one will invest in our debt, we are finished and we do not know when that will be.

I would eliminate the Departments of National Science, Commerce, Environmental Protection, International Assistance, Other Independent Agencies, Energy, Housing and Urban Development, Education, Labor, Transportation, Agriculture and Health and Human Services. None of these could not be better run by the states!

Congress has the power of the money so all they have to do is cut off the funds. Even in the other departments they could cut off the money to people like the Presidents wife, who spends $10,000,000 on her staff even though she is not part of the government at all, and the money to the Czars.

















Ideas to Save America: 1. Line Item Veto

Ideas to Save America: 2. Social Security

Ideas to Save America: 3. Medicare

Ideas to Save America: 4. Double GDP

Ideas to Save America: 5. Get Congress out of Washington

Ideas to Save America: 6. Repeal the 17th Amendment

Ideas to Save America 7. Education

Ideas to Save America 8. Legal Systems

9. National ID Card - Get Over It