8 Solutions to the Dysfunctional Political System in America
We all know that the current atmosphere in Washington, D.C. can be described as dysfunctional. I’ve been giving a lot of thought to ways that our dysfunctional political system could be fixed. Here’s what I’ve come up with.
· Term Limits—Our Founding Fathers did not envision a system in which we had career politicians. Serving in the Congress should not be about amassing power because you’ve been there the longest. Serving in the Congress should be about doing what is best for America. Term limits would bring fresh blood and new ideas into the government on a more regular basis.
· Strong Third Party—We need a good, solid third party that’s made up of the centrists in both the Republican and Democratic parties. If a strong third party deprived the other two parties of a majority in the Congress, it would force compromise to get anything done. Why doesn’t the establishment and the media want a viable third party?
· End Lobbying—Lobbying=Corruption. There’s no money in politics; the money is in the graft. Lobbying corrupts the integrity of the Congress and its members and is nothing more than good, old fashioned vote buying. Does anyone else think it suspicious that most of the members of the Congress end up millionaires? Maybe that’s why they’re not willing to ban lobbying.
· Cut Congressional Pay, Benefits, and Time Congress is in Session—Congress should be in session from January through March, the month of June, and again in October and November up to Thanksgiving. Members of the Congress should be paid $30,000 per year for this part-time service or a per diem. The rest of the time, they need to go back to the districts they represent and their jobs.
· Balanced Budget Amendment and Massive Restructuring of the Federal Government—First, we need to substantially reduce the size of the federal government by restructuring and eliminating a number of departments. Second, the Congress can develop a balanced budget rule with caps on spending increases. What taxpayer wouldn’t agree that tightening the purse string is a good idea, particularly when it comes to members of the Congress who don’t seem to care how much they spend?
· Eliminate Riders and Amendments to Bills—Shouldn’t the merits of the bill itself be the chief factor in determining whether it passes and not because there was some rider that got some votes to ensure passage? It should be fairly simple—the proposed legislation should fit on less than two pieces of legal paper. The Bill of Rights didn’t need much more space than that. Do we really need these complex bills that no one seems to read or understand?
· Make Congress Like Jury Duty—If you meet certain qualifications (education, citizenship, etc.) and if your number gets called up, you’re going to be the congressman or senator for the next two years or six years. If this system is good enough to determine a person’s fate in a court of law, why wouldn’t this work in running our country? I think it would bring more common sense to Washington and make the Congress more like our Founding Fathers had envisioned.
· Vote Them All Out and Start Over—What we’ve got in Washington, D.C. right now clearly isn’t working. So, let’s vote all of them out. The people in Washington are working for themselves and will do or say whatever it takes to keep their seat. Let’s find some good, hardworking American citizens and taxpayers to run for these seats and let’s get them elected.
I think we can all agree that we need solutions not just lectures and excuses from politicians.
Robert Frost once said that,
“Freedom lies in being bold.”
We need bold solutions to our problems, and that necessitates a better working relationship between the parties in Washington.