545 People

Michael’s Note: This column by Charlie Reese was originally written in the 1980s and has since been updated. Charlie is a former columnist for the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper. He’s currently a registered Democrat, but has previously been a Republican. In light of the fact our congress has approved the largest spending bill in America’s history—without reading it and with most American’s against it—it seems to me we need to take a hard look at where we are.

Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Have you ever wondered why, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, we have deficits?

Have you ever wondered why, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, we have inflation and high taxes?

You and I don’t propose a federal budget.  The president does.

You and I don’t have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations.  The House of Representatives does.

You and I don’t write the tax code, Congress does.

You and I don’t set fiscal policy, Congress does.

You and I don’t control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

100 senators, 435 congressmen, 1 president, and 9 Supreme Court justices—545 human beings out of 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress.  In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.

I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority.  They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a president to do one cotton-picking thing. I don’t care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash.

The politician has the power to accept or reject it.  No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator’s responsibility to determine how he votes.

Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault.  They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.

What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall.  No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits.  The president can only propose a budget.  He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes.  Who is the speaker of the House?

She is the leader of the majority party.  She and fellow House members, not the president, can approve any budget they want.  If the president vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.

It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million can not replace 545 people who stand convicted—by present facts—of incompetence and irresponsibility.  I can’t think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people.  When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

If the tax code is unfair, it’s because they want it unfair.

If the budget is in the red, it’s because they want it in the red.

If the Marines are in IRAQ , it’s because they want them in IRAQ

If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it’s because they want it that way.
There are no insoluble government problems.

Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power.  Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like ‘the economy,’ ‘inflation,’ or ‘politics’ that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.

They, and they alone, have the power.

They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees.

We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!

What you do with this article now that you have read it is up to you, though you appear to have several choices . . .

1.  You can send this to everyone in your address book, and hope they do something about it.

2.  You can agree to vote against everyone that is currently in office, knowing that the process will take several years.

3.  You can decide to run for office yourself and agree to do the job properly.

4.  Lastly, you can sit back and do nothing, or re-elect the current bunch.

YOU DECIDE, BUT AT LEAST SHARE IT.

“The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.”

—Albert Einstein.
  1. February 17th, 2009 at 15:03 | #1

    Of course there is a great deal of truth in this, but these 545 did not lead the financial services industry into the mess they are now in. They may have contributed by poor regulation and oversight, but they cannot be held solely responsible for that mess, which in fact goes to show that politicians are not the only ones who aren’t held accountable! So the question is, could we find 545 smarter people or is it the system that needs changing?

    Bay