Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Same Old Tired Issues

Every election cycle the same tired issues and their even more tired solutions pop up.  These issues hover around every national campaign, sometimes moving front and center, sometimes just hanging out on the periphery with their tired, loser friends.  There are too many to count or is it, too many to rant about in the short time I have given myself to write this post?  Who knows?  Who cares?

Today folks, who may or may not be waiting with bated breath for the next great piece of wisdom or stunning observation I have to impart,  uh .... Where was....... Oh Yeah.  Today, I have my panties in a bunch over "Term Limits".

No doubt there is nationwide disgust with Congress.  I have not talked with anyone who thinks Congress as a whole is conducting business as it should.  Matter of fact, I don't think I have ever talked with someone who thought everything was wonderful and trusted our legislators as stand up leaders of our country.   And while we hold Congress as a whole in extreme contempt, when we are asked if that includes our state's specific Senator or Representative, there is an even chance we do not include them as part of the overall cluster fuck that is DC.  It ain't "their guy or gal", it is all those other Bozos from away screwing things up.

Like the weather, Congress has always been a go to whine we pull out of our Complaing quiver when some inside the gulliwots emotion needs purging.  Complaining is a national pastime.  And when the complaint is regarding elected officials, one of the solutions used to alleviate the stress of complaining is term limits.

Somehow by instituting a limit on how long they can stay will magically make Congress work better?  Hmm ............... Is there any real proof this would work?  Or is it just wishful thinking?  If indeed the latter, then I would say no to term limits.  Too many laws based on wishful thinking have been passed that fell flat on their face.  It is the system that needs changing, not the time frame of those who sit in Congress.  Both parties have quite an extensive network of farm teams with players just waiting to replace those who have to leave because of term limits.   They are eager to please those who run their particular political machine.   The same political and economic interests will still be pulling the strings.  Under term limits, they might wield more power I am thinking.   It is often easier to control the rookie than the seasoned vet.  Especially if they have come up through the party ranks.

 An experienced politician, well liked among their electorate, should be allowed to continue as long as the electorate wants them.  An experienced politician is more likely to garner goodies for their district than a rookie.  Term limits would increase the power a larger populated region or state has over the less populated areas.  And besides people, we already have friggin term limits.  They are called elections.  If we do not get off our butts to toss them out, then we get what we deserve.

Okay so say you don't agree with my take above.  That's fine.  There are other arguments I could field to defend my contempt for the notion of term limits.  But I won't.  It comes down to the responsibility of living in our so called free country.   My mother ingrained in me the idea that if there was one key duty as an American, it was to vote.  Term limits just make it easier to shirk that duty.

My distaste for term limits does not mean I would cast them aside completely.  I think term limits tied to elected officials is a bad idea.  But if we want to discuss the possibility of term limits for appointed officials not tied to administrations changing hands, uh like say SCOTUS, then I would gladly back a movement to limit the time a Supreme Court Justice can arbitrarily affect our lives.  We could limit the terms to a length of time long enough to not be tied to the current party who was large and in charge.  Make it a 15 year appointment and make sure it falls in an off election year.  Or something like that.

Keep it 'tween the ditches ........................................

9 comments:

BBC said...

I see no point in term limits, if we don't like those in office we can always vote them out of office, that seems like a pretty good term limit to me.

Nasreen Iqbal said...

I've been on governing boards and bodies. A lot of it's pretty mundane. But very often, we're trying to remember how we handle a certain task or why we handle it in a certain way, and everybody looks to the senior member of the team. It's incredibly important to have an institutional memory so you're not recreatiing the same old four-sided wheels all of the time and then spending a week making them round again.

Ol'Buzzard said...

Term limits may be wishful thinking, but it could not be any less functional.

It is the only job where you can vote in your own pay raises. Do they realy need a House Doctor, a House gym, a House cafeteria with cut rate prices... and free medical and a retirement? They spend 80% of their time when they are at work lining up supporters for reelection - and they work on a hand full of days a year. Did you ever wonder why they draw out committies for so long - they get extry pay for each committee they are on...
They are the real welfare queens.
the Ol'Buzzard

JACKIESUE said...

some new asshole will come in to replace them.

BBC said...

"some new asshole will come in to replace them."

By the end of the year....

MRMacrum said...

BBC - Exactly. Term limits I think would add more complexity only gives more advantage to the back room bosses.

Nasreen Iqbal - I like that term "institutional memory". You are absolutely right.

Ol'Buzzard - It can't be any "less functional"? How can you possibly know that? The problems you point up could still happen no matter how long they are allowed to stay in office. Term limits do not solve the basic rot and decay that is found in the workings of Congress. The system needs attention. Just swapping personnel does in no way insure that.

JACKIESUE - As the process is rigged, yes, I think you are right.

Jono said...

All we have to do is get the other half of the voters to form an opinion and show up to actually vote. For a nation that espouses so much greatness and freedom a lot of people don't really seem to give a shit. Elections are term limits, but you have an good idea about appointments. To approve it would take an act of congress which almost never happens anymore.

Tom Harper said...

Term limits = "meet the new boss; same as the old boss." As several people here have already said, if the voters want term limits they can demonstrate this by voting out the incumbent. Problem solved.

Kulkuri said...

Has anyone really looked at how term limits have "worked" in the states that have them?? IMHO they haven't worked very well, Michigan is a prime example.

I've noticed that those that are the most fervent for term limits are those whose party can't get elected unless the incumbent is not allowed to run again. And it has worked very well for them, again Michigan is a prime example!!

Also term limits give more power to the bureaucrats, politicians may come and go, but bureaucrats are around forever!!