Cut Their Pay and Send Them Home (Chapter XXVII)

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More news, from the DC Examiner's excellent new gossip col "Yeas and Nays" (was Goofuses and Gallants already taken?), that Congress really is a bullshit workfare program:

Several members [of Congress] will play backup to first-season "American Idol" winner Kelly Clarkson today as they record a track in a session led by "Idol" judge Randy Jackson.

"We're gonna rub shoulders" with the politicians and show them "really what goes on in the recording process," Jackson told us Tuesday….

We hear most pols will be armed with no more than tambourines and other harmless instruments.

Anything that keeps them from passing legislation, I suppose. Or Orrin Hatch away from the ivories.

More here.

NEXT: Shining, Gleaming, Streaming, Flaxen, Waxen

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  1. I imagine Kelly Clarkson is on the phone with her agent right now desperately trying to get out of this.
    I think the term “commercial suicide” was probably going through her mind as she dialed.

  2. Members of Congress, especially Senators work for the states as much as anything else. If I can fault the framers of the Constitution for one thing, it is for not writing into the Constitution that the care and feeding of members of Congress is the responsibility of the States they represent not the federal government. This would keep the greedy bastards from constantly raising their pay and giving themselves ridiculous retirement benefits. If the states paid Congress’s salaries, being a member of Congress would be a sure ticket to poverty. The last the States would ever spend more than the absolute minimum amount of money on would be pay for the local rep in Washington. No one, except a few born rich with nothing better to do, would be able to afford to stay in Congress for more than one or two terms at most.

  3. The last the States would ever spend more than the absolute minimum amount of money on would be pay for the local rep in Washington.

    I don’t know about the states, but companies spend a lot on lobbyists.

  4. Well, if our government looked anything like the government the framers put to paper, I don’t think lobbying at the national level would be all that big a deal. Of course, if I had a time machine I’d make FDR die of polio as a kid once…just to see how the 20th century turned out. If the outcome is worse, I could fix it, I’d have a time machine.

  5. “‘We’re gonna rub shoulders’ with the politicians…”

    Forget that-I’d rather rub something else with Kelly Clarkson…

    Oh, come on-someone was gonna say it eventually.

  6. Too bad Orrin Hatch is a better musician than anybody on American Idol, ’cause if you’ve heard him play, he really stinks.

  7. John, I like where your going but there are a couple of sticking points.

    Who would decide a Senator’s or Congressman’s pay be raised? The states?

    I don’t think the federal government would allow a situation where the Senator from Arkansas make 30k a year while a Senator from New York makes 100k a year.

    I say put a pay raise on the ballot every four years, then the people can decide if Congress is worth extra.

  8. How about no pay raises for any congressman while he’s in office? Stick around for 20 years, earn the same pay for 20 years. Only the newly-elected get the going rate. Think of it as an incentive program for self-imposed term limits.

  9. “Who would decide a Senator’s or Congressman’s pay be raised? The states?”

    Yes, each individual state would pay and set the rates for its Reps and Senators

    “I don’t think the federal government would allow a situation where the Senator from Arkansas make 30k a year while a Senator from New York makes 100k a year. ”

    Why not? If NY wants to waste its tax money giving it to Hillary and Schumar, more power to them. It would be very interesting to see who paid what.

    “I say put a pay raise on the ballot every four years, then the people can decide if Congress is worth extra.”

    I don’t have a problem with that, because no one would ever vote to raise it. How about this, let Congress live by the charity of their voters. Put one of those boxes on your tax return where you can agree to give a dollar of your tax money to your local needy Rep and Senator. Each rep and Senator would only get paid the amount that their voters in each district or state allowed by checking the block. No one checks in your district, you don’t get paid. Think of the tremendous pleasure you would get every tax day checking no on that block?

  10. Index Congressional pay to some economic indicators.

    The CPI goes up, their pay goes down.

    Unemployment goes up, their pay goes down.

    The deficit balloons, their pay deflates.

    The National Debt increases, their pay is cut.

    No Congressional fringe benefits – the Reps and Senators get a fixed % of their pay in the equivalent of a 401(k) contribution, but no pension. They get the same for a Health Savings Account, but no health insurance.

    Maybe then the idiots will pass laws the rest of us can live under.

    Kevin

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