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Raises for Congress

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  • Raises for Congress

    Every so often we see reports that Congress is looking for another pay increase. Currently their salary is $174k a year. This is pretty much double what I make. Personally I think I make decent money, especially for someone who never finished college/university, much learned a trade.

    Most likely they are looking for an increase in pay to further support their ever more opulent lifestyles which is not the reason they should have sought their current positions in the first place.

    Here is my solution. Of course some of this would be a bit hard to enforce, especially for a group of people who think they live above the law, but

    First: if the reason they are seeking public office is about the money they should no longer be eligible for that office.
    Second: their salary should match that of the general median income for the entire country, which I believe is in the $50k range.
    Third: their pension/retirement fund should be self funded.
    Lastly: they should only have access to the same health insurance policies the rest of the country does.

    Anything else you can think of?

  • #2
    Originally posted by Knotical View Post
    Anything else you can think of?
    A balanced budget, and a fluctuating year to year income or bonus dependent upon remaining under budget (performance related).

    We are upside down, instead of receiving performance related bonuses or pay increases our officials receive money from lobbyist or other unknown incentives. We see it done by giant pharmaceuticals that go into hospitals and incentivize their drugs or even medical equipment, whether through wining and dining or even "bird dog" fees.

    In my opinion, people are making too much money during financial transactions. Everywhere there is a transaction from the exchange rate to governmental contracts. For example, in the military we used tool boxes that were generic names yet costs thousands above the best named brands from Snap On or Mac tools. Someone is making money in exchange for those contracts. In a way they are giving themselves bonuses. An independent contractor seemingly never gets the bid for the lowest cost and quality work, the contractor that puts a bid in that includes some form of incentive to the official gets the contract at the tax payer's expense.

    The only problem I can foresee are officials cutting much needed finances to key areas in order to give themselves pay increases artificially boosting performance. These career politicians will abuse the system no matter what. I really support term limits and think that they would solve a lot of our problems, besides an informed voter discerning an elected official's motivation to represent us "we the people" - but I give up on that.

    So many things today are being used as promissory notes. I know it sounds like a "conspiracy", but at the current deficit they mind as well stamp birth certificates with bank or other nation's logos. Those birth certificates are promissory notes, because they promise that X amount of citizens will pay x amount of taxes in the future, and our officials are banking on it now. Our children are being sold out to pay for a debt that we can no longer pay. We are being forced into slavery under socialism where everyone is taxed so high that they are reliant on government benefits to survive.
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    • #3
      They can get it on two conditions. First there needs to be term limits to how long anyone can hold a seat. I don't understand why the president can only have two terms, unless under tragic circumstances, but they can be in their seats until they die. Second, they can get a bonus for every trillion they knock off the national budget. I don't care if they finagle it, trade debt, as long as they get it down to zero and then in the black again. If they can't do those two things, they have no right to ask for a raise when they are driving our country into the ground.
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      • #4
        It is amazing to think that Congressperson/Representative is the only job I know of where you can be a complete failure at what you do and still keep it. If we actually used some sort of performance based review system when these people consider re-election and they come back with a negative rating they are then disqualified from running again.

        It is interesting to think how different this country would look if we did have term limits on all politicians since these positions first started.
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        • #5
          I heard a suggestion before, and I think it hit the nail right on the head. It goes: We should just give minimum wage to government officials. Then we will see how fast the people only in it for the money would leave. I think it's a pretty good idea, as public service should be on their main agenda, and not self preservation and having to fund their multiple houses. It's especially annoying in 3rd world countries, as you would see people on the streets begging for food, while the rich government officials would rather debate on whether they should increase their own salary. It's a terrible world to live in.
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          • #6
            I would have to say that you are spot on Knotical when you mention that if they are seeking more money then they should no be in the office. It is not about the money, it is about the service, and with that said outside of anything related to keeping up with inflation (which in itself is ridiculous given the high salary) then there is no need for a raise. I really wish that someone could just apply common sense to some of these issues and say no and we can all move on. All I see is more money being spent and getting nothing in return.
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