My Rule for Life

I would rather live my life as if there is a God, and die to find out there isn't, than live my life as if there isn't, and die to find out there is.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Why Term Limits, Why Not, Why Now!

Admittedly I do not know Congressman Charlie Rangel.  I know only of him through the news.  I've never been to his district in New York.  Undoubtedly he is well liked.  He has spent the last 40 years representing the people of his district well enough to get himself re-elected.  Over, and over and over and over again.  That in itself does not necessarily make him a good representative, only a good politician. He began his political career in 1971 at the rate of $42,500 per year*  He and the rest of the Congressmen and women currently are paid $174,000 per year plus benefits above and well beyond what the average American receives.  A very healthy sum what ever year your wish to align your salary with.  Although this is not meant to be a pick on Congressman Rangel it does cause me to wonder why we have so many millionaires in Congress.  I don't know who said it however, the saying goes something like this.  When does a politician's campaign for re-election start?  The day after he wins the election.

 That should say something to all of us.  Do we want our elected officials interviewing for a job that may be two, four, or six years away?  I don't.  I want them there working on the problems of the country, their state and their district.  Do you really think George Washington, Abe Lincoln, Winston Churchill really gave a damn about getting re-elected.  I think not.  They cared.  They cared about their country, the people in the country and the future of the country.  I have heard George Washington had to mortgage his farm just to have the money to get to Philadelphia for his inauguration.  I am sure some historian can verify or refute that.  But, if true the point is sacrifice for the good of country not for the good of getting re-elected (aka good of yourself).

Let me go back to Congressman Rangel for a moment.  I wish my good friend Elizabeth would read this as she is a counselor and a professional. She would (might) be able to make an unofficial clinical decision as to whether Congressman Rangel is in denial.  I think he might be but I am just a commoner.  I am reminded of the pictures of the late Senator Strom Thurmond and the late Senator Robert Byrd in their last days in Congress. They were pushed onto the floor of Congress by aides in wheelchairs.  When they spoke it was quite sad as you (I) could tell they were a mere shell of themselves. The fire and power and strength they once had was faded and gone. I wondered at the time if they even knew what was going on.  What really concerned me was did they even know what they were voting on.  Congressman Rangel is 80 and appears in pretty good health.  Senator Thurmond was in his 90's I believe, as was Senator Byrd.  I am not advocating a mandatory retirement age.  I do feel that we all reach an age where we are better off to turn over the reigns and sit back relax and enjoy the young people making mistakes.  Just as we did and they will do.  It's called learning.  Sometimes easy, sometimes hard, nonetheless, learning.

We must push our elected officials now to enact term limits on the Senate and the Congress.  It's good enough for the President, thank goodness, and it's good enough for Congress.While main stream America has the eyes and ears of the current Congress would this not be a good time to push for term limits?  Personally I think 12 years is plenty.  A true American would be allowed to serve 6 Congressional terms or 2 Senate terms. No more, pick your poison.  You want to be a Congressman fine, you want to be a Senator that's fine too but, 12 years service period!  Oh yes, your salary.  How about the average of what the American blue collar guy makes.  That's about $45,000. The real median earnings of men who worked full time, year-round climbed between 2006 and 2007, from $43,460 to $45,113.*  How do these guys/gals become millionaires?

Just some food for thought on this desperate and dateless Saturday night.

May G-d Bless America and keep our brave warriors safe.



Lana said...

I have been a believer in term limits since I started voting many years ago. Your post is right on the mark.

ABNPOPPA said...

Hi Lana,

Thanks for stopping by. I, like you have been for term limits for a long time. Like I said in my post George Washington wasn't thinking about getting re-elected.

Enjoy the holiday season and I hope you stop back on a regular basis.


Most Rev. Gregori said...

Pops, Charlie Rangel is a product of the American electorate. As long as We the People keep re-electing the same people over and over again, we end up with people like Rangel, B. Frank, Maxine Waters, etc.

From all that I have read and studied, the Founding Fathers NEVER intended our politicians to hold office for ever or until they croak. They were to serve their term and then go home. Now we have career politicians which brings corruption and greed.

WomanHonorThyself said...

I have been a believer in term limits since I started voting many years ago. Your post is right on the mark...ditto to that!:)

MightyMom said...

term limits good!
setting up little empires bad!

Have a Merry christmas dear friend!
enjoy your family this week!

Jeff-for-progress said...

Hi Pops,

"Merry Christmas" to you, your family, and your followers.

As to term limits for the House,I'm not so sure. Although E.J. made a good case for abolishing the Senate, which I covered in my post on Dimm's Fairy Tales on July 28th.

take care.



Lutheran Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Destruction of the embryo in the mother's womb is a violation of the right to live which God has bestowed upon this nascent life. To raise the question whether we are here concerned already with a human being or not is merely to confuse the issue. The simple fact is that God certainly intended to create a human being and that this nascent human being has been deliberately deprived of his life. And that is nothing but murder.

Read more about this famous Lutheran Pastor at: