Issues People Face with Accountability for Elected Leaders: a Sidebar from Warren Buffet

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Friday October 21, by Jerome F. Keating Ph.D.

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the US debt ceiling:

"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election/

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds)took only 3 months...ays to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971 - before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year or less to become the law of the land - all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet's message should be spread around.

As should the following thoughts on reform of any government office holders, particularly since they pass laws affecting Social Security (USA) while they themselves have their own select security plan. One of the best ways for US citizens to get Social Security fixed is to make all Congressmen/women subject to the same system.

  1. No Tenure / No Pension.

A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they're out of office. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security.

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

  1. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do..
  2. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%..
  3. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.
  4. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people..
  5. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen/women..

Congressmen/women made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

Should we not ask people that supposedly are fixing any nation to fix themselves by the same standards.