Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Impress me Congress

Not only do we get a new President but we get the same Congress. If we really want to shake things up and 'drain the swamp' let the new government consider the following:
  • Eliminate coining the penny and nickel. They are both cost more to produce than they're worth and neither furthers commerce. 
  • De-centralize the legislature. Move the representatives from the House back to their respective states. There's no reason for 'local' representatives to live in D.C. and thereby be within easy reach of K-street. With modern IT systems there's no need to send everyone to one city. Do this for the Senate as well. Keep the buildings and such for ceremonial duties.
  • While we've moved the reps back to the states, let's increase their numbers. The U.S. has had a set number of reps since 1913. Each representative served 211k constituents. Today each rep serves 758k. I'm not sure how one person can represent 200k let alone 758k of people. If we want a people's house and not a second Senate, we've got to add more politicians.
  • Abolish the Electoral College. I'm not saying this from sour grapes, I'm saying that this system is antiquated to the needs of our republic.
  • Ranked-choice voting. The reason we have only two parties is that our election system (first-past-the-post) leads to it.
  • Make national elections a national holiday. Shouldn't we celebrate our republic?
  • Pay down/off the national debt. We almost had this in the early 2000s. Don't screw this up again. Here's a better idea from the right side of the aisle. Only allow the government to spend what it has collected in the previous year.
  • Add a national service system that parallels the military. I can think of no other equalizer of and to others than the armed forces, but not everyone wants to nor should risk their life.
I'm not holding out hope that any of these things will be done in the next session, but I could be surprised.

Monday, November 14, 2016

My thoughts on the recent POTUS election.

The main feeling I get from this election is that the majority of people thought they had two choices

  1. A lying politician whose bullshit they could see openly.
  2. A lying politician whose bullshit couldn't be seen and wouldn't be acknowledged.
Given the choice of these two items, the EC granted #1 the win. And for all of the desire for change and draining the swamp, the same rats (90%+) were sent back to the swamp.

Given the results I have a few hunches on what will happen in the next few years.
  • Rs will pass massively underfunded budgets and claim how awesome that they are since deficits and debt don't matter until there's a Democratic branch of government.
  • Rs will forget all about Presidential power abuses and not seek to re-constrain the executive branch powers
  • Rs will become victims of their own hubris and over-reach.
  • There will be a recession - we're overdue according to the Motley Fool podcast.
More thoughts later about what I'd like to see from an even vaguely functioning Congress.