Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

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Congress should get back to work, too

by Gordon Ammon

October 10, 2013

I don’t care if you’re a Republican. I don’t care if you’re a Democrat.

I do not care if you call yourself a conservative or a liberal.

I don’t even care if you are a card-carrying union member or a bootstrapping capitalist.

Here’s what I do care about: work.

That’s right, work!

We have 535 men and women in the United States Congress who show up at their offices barely five months in the year.

They enjoy 18 weeks of vacation, endless recesses, breaks, national holidays, so-called federal observances and engage in senseless junketeering.

In the meanwhile they collect hundreds and hundreds of thousands and millions upon millions of dollars in compensation.

This does not include the tens of millions of added income derived from brokering financial windfalls based upon insider information, i.e., knowledge of the impact various legislative initiatives will have on the economy long before the general public shares that insight.

And if you are a U.S. Representative who serves only a single term of two years, you can retire with full pension benefits for the rest of you life.

That means you can collect 30 or more years of retirement for roughly 10 months of office holding.

If you have a seat in either the Senate or the House, you have the power to vote for the amount by which you will increase your own income. Is it any wonder that 11 percent of the members of Congress are 1-percenters — people who rank as the wealthiest individuals in the country?

I would like you to look at your own work history and ask yourself what job you ever held where you could take up to three-quarters of the year off and still expect to be paid regularly and enjoy full benefits in the bargain?

What kind of work did you do that enabled you to walk into the boss’s office after a seven month absence and tell him/her the size of the raise you expected in the coming year?

And just where did you work where you could announce to your employer after two calendar years that you were ready to retire and that you expected to collect 100 percent of everything for the rest of your life?

Let me be blunt. I don’t want these good-for-nothing slackers bilking the public out of countless millions of dollars and then telling me about some mythical “path to prosperity.”

What I do want is for this crowd of negligent laggards to find the paths to their offices! Just how can a nation that does not know whether or not it can pay its bills next month deal with the incredible challenges facing it if no one can be found to work on the solutions?

What we need is a sense of outrage!

We need to join together and demand an honest day’s labor for an honest day’s wage.

We have the right to insist that our representatives do the people’s work.

And there is no possible way they can honor the public trust by peddling bogus economic plans on endless talk shows or skinny dipping in the Sea of Galilee, like Congressman Kevin Yoder (R-Kansas) during a recent “fact-finding” junket to Israel. Outrageous!