By Michael Hickey | WeaponizedNews.Com | Jan 24, 2016
This is not a new idea. It has been a conversation piece among social circles around the fifty states for decades, yet our political leaders say nothing. Our politicians make too much money. We get upset then arrive to our general conclusion of “Yeah…but what are we gonna do”. We then shrug our shoulders and complain about another one of the endless atrocities our government commits. We continue to sit around hoping our elected officials will save the day. Well I hate to be the one to tell you this, but it’s not going to happen. That’s just the bottom line. Why? Because self preservation is our most basic instinct in regards to human nature. No sane individual is going to vote to sacrifice their standard of living. Why would they, they have mouths to feed, houses to pay for, and not to mention the luxuries they have come accustomed to. Sure you may get a few noble individuals to vote for it, but the 218+ votes you would need to get the bill through the house? Forget about it.
An elected official makes anywhere from $90,000 for (state officials) to $174,000+ for members of the house and senate, plus benefits. This keeps our elected officials sitting comfortably in the cozy upper middle class that they themselves are destroying. Ironic isn’t it? They get paid whether they do their job or not, really whether they even show up or not. It makes no difference. Their paycheck will be cut and delivered to them on time. They cannot be fired for poor job performance they can only lose an election. Could you imagine if this model was used for any private business. If a privately owned business overpaid it’s employees regardless of end results or attendance. The company would go out of business within it’s first year, especially in this economy.
The point I am trying to make is that our elected officials will never be able to understand or solve the problems we face today in this world because they do not live in the same world. They are immune to our pain. Not only are they immune but they benefit off it. So why would they vote in a way them makes vulnerable to realities of the world? You almost can’t even blame them… Almost.
The first thing we need to understand as Americans is that if we want this problem solved we will have to do it ourselves. Together, United, Republicans, Democrats, Green Party members, libertarians, everyone of all races and political affiliations. We would have to protest, petition, march together on Washington if we truly want to attack political salaries. Otherwise nothing will ever be accomplished, and not just on this issue but any issue for that matter because there is absolutely no motivation within the current model for our elected officials to do their jobs. This burden lays solely on our shoulders and ours alone.
With that being said what should we the people demand? Rather than pick a number at random or cut current wages half I would propose that all elected officials make a salary equal to the income of the American average. Currently that average sits at a pathetic $32,000 dollars a year. This, I believe, would provide the missing motivation our political leaders need in order to get back to work and to fix our crumbling economy. If they want a raise, easy enough, bring the average income of America up. If our elected officials want to live in the middle class then fix the middle class. We must force them to look our problems in the face, we must force them down to our level if they are ever to understand what this country needs.
Now let’s look at the benefits of this reform. One as previously stated is that it will provide the much needed motivation for our elected officials but more importantly look at it financially. There are roughly 500,000 elected officials (including State elected) and nearly all of them make more than 32,000 dollars a year. Lets look at just congress for a moment. There are 435 voting members in congress making 174,000 dollars a year meaning we are currently spending $75.69 million dollars a year on basically useless individuals. With the new wage we would spend only $13.92 million. We would save over $61 million a year just on congress alone and another $15 million in the senate. That’s not even including the other 499,465 other elected officials when you add those in we would be saving billions. In my opinion the amount of money we spend on government salaries is not only a massive waste of money but easily our worst investment to date considering we get no return.
This is not a new idea that our politicians should make less money. In fact it was originally the noble Benjamin Franklin’s idea that elected officials should receive no compensation at all, however that did not sit well with a handful of the other founding fathers and they initiated a daily payment of $6.00 a day while in session which then shortly after began to spiral out of control leaving us with the grossly over paid officials we have today. After all who wouldn’t vote for a raise? I’m sure if you went into any American office today and said “Raise your hand if you think everyone should get a raise.” Just about every hand would go up, with the exception of possibly the accountant.
This governmental wage reform should be the first and foremost issue we need to address as a nation because we cannot realistically expect change until we bring our politicians down from their ivory tower to live among us. The only problem here is, honestly, is you and me. We continue to forget how much power we possess when we stand together on an issue. We would rather ignore it than have to work with one another to fix it, because again we are the only ones capable of making this change. Our politicians never will, it goes against the very foundation of human nature for them to vote against their own self interest. So we need to stop assuming that they will because we all know what happens when we ass-u-me…
As for now this idea remains as only words on paper. A possible conversation piece for the social circles around America. All I can ask of you is to remember the power we possess as citizens of the United State of America. United we stand, divided we fall. No truer words have ever been spoken in regards to this once great country. Yet we wonder why we are falling. It is time for us to think about our own self preservation and the preservation of this country that we call home. Can we for once come together on an issue? Can we at least agree on a common enemy that isn’t our neighbor? Can we work together to save this country? The answer is simple. We have to, there is no other option. If we can’t do it together we will live to see the destruction of a once proud nation and we will be left to live among rubble.