November 30, 2011
The House of Congress was assembled to help the people of America. It was a house composed of the common man made to help the average person, but the ideal behind its inception has been slowly confused, muddled, and lost over the years. The role of Congress includes, but is not limited to ratifying treaties, initiating the impeachment of the President, initiating revenue funding, and approving presidential appointments. However, the crux of its responsibilities lies in lawmaking and representing the people. Congress has transformed itself from an important engine of governmental checks and balances into a simple stereotype of people in their position. They have become a collection of selfish money-hungry politicians.
Congress has become avaricious and self-indulgent. The United States economy has been in a steady decline over the past decade. For the last two years, America has been in a severe repression. In fact, some economists have called it a depression. Congress voted successfully not to give itself a raise in two of the last four years; however they have not rejected the legislature that gives them an automatic cost-of-living raise each year. This means that each and every year that Congress fails to vote against a raise, they will receive one. Concurrently, Congress has repeatedly denied an increase in cost-of-living raises in Social Security. The average recipient of Social Security does not make enough money to support their household. The average Social Security recipient does not have enough money to pay for their bills. The current baseline salary for members of Congress is $174,000. Congressional members regularly disregard the needs of the people that elected them into office while lining their pockets with tax payer dollars.
In addition to withholding finances from the people that need them most, Congress is also using privileged information attained in the privacy of corporation hearings to line their pockets with easy money. Insider trading is illegal for the common public, however members of Congress can and have used this undisclosed information for their own personal gains. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Representative Spencer Bachus, a member of the House Financial Services Committee, were informed through secret briefings with Federal Chair Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson that the global financial system would have a meltdown in 2008. Bachus promptly began shorting the market. He bought contract options in multiple companies, because he knew that the market would collapse. Once it did fall in late September, he had collected twice the amount of money that he put in. Bauchus made a fortune off of the misfortune that befell the market. And this is not uncommon with Congressional politicians. On top of the six-figure salary that they literally receive for decades (incumbents win elections 90% of the time despite running every two years), these politicians regularly ignore all ethical obligations and exploit the information garnered from their position.
Congress used to be a voice for the commoners. It served as a vehicle for the representation of regular people. However, Congressmen and Congresswomen have become completely self-attending and self-absorbent. Instead of championing the causes of the people that they should serve, they put in place legislation that increases their pay regularly. Instead of serving the elderly and handicapped that are at the mercy of the Social Security system, they utilize insider trading to bolster the inflated salaries that taxpayers are funding. Congress needs to be stopped, and they need to be forced back into the ideals on which they were founded.