Seeing the Round Corners

November 19, 2018

Today’s column is one this writer likes to “replay” after each election. The content arrived in an e-mail many years ago, purportedly written by a mega billionaire entrepreneur who shall remain nameless. Since Colorado’s new governor is one of the ten most wealthy members of Congress, it seems even more appropriate after the 2018 mid-term elections. See if you agree. Special note should be given to those in Congress who keep referring to Social Security and Medicare as welfare programs and the most detrimental to the national deficit.

December 7, 2015


Some years back an e-mail arrived from more than one reader that obviously was making the rounds, each having a little different spin. While it was attributed to a very well-known billionaire, he shall remain nameless for the column just in case it was a “tongue-in-cheek” proposal. 

With those ever-continuing opinion polls of Congress and the lack of effectiveness for the members thereof, maybe the idea proposed in the e-mail is an idea that could gain some momentum with very little effort.

First, that billionaire is said to have proposed in an interview with CNBC that he could end the deficit in 5 minutes, “You just pass a law that says anytime there is a deficit of more than 3 percent of Gross Domestic Product, 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 and 8 days 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 took one year or less to become the law of the land … all because of public pressure.”

The idea proposed was the “Congressional Reform Act of 20__ (the Act),” with the basic provisions being:

  1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.
  2. Congress (past, present and 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 (Social Security) may not be used for any other purpose.
  3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.
  4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of the Consumer Price Index or 3 percent.
  5. Congress losses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.
  6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.
  7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective January 1 of the year following passage of the Act. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen 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 terms, then go home and back to work.

   This would be a good fix of Congress. Take this challenge – spin the idea with those you know and see just how many think it is a great idea. Keep in mind that those in Congress are the ones who put the fox in charge of the hen house, so don't look for any members of Congress to get on board.

The reader's comments or questions are always welcome. E-mail me at