Today, we have lawyers who have gone to law school, learned how to argue whatever point they were issued to argue and grew up privileged. They come out of school and into politics, where they climb the ladder's rungs until they become congressman, senator or president. At that point, they have preferred and specialized health care, huge salaries and bonuses that they can vote to increase and a huge collection of perks that continue for life. Once a senator or congressman, or president, is voted out, the money, healthcare and perks continue in perpetuity.
I want that retirement package. Let me run for office, travel around, show up for a vote or two, laze off the rest of the time and get voted out of office for not doing squat. Then let me enjoy the ongoing perks until I finally kick on my 109th birthday.
Lately, 82% to 86% of the public, depending on who you listen to, is unhappy with the performance of the Congress (that is, Congress and Senate) and President. They just haven't been performing! Why? Because they are doing what they were trained to do, what their life and work experience has prepared them for: arguing the point they were told to argue.
It doesn't matter whether a law student believes what he is arguing or not – and it is called arguing – he must argue the point as if it was his life's calling. That is what we are seeing in the collection of talking heads who have been explaining what is going on with our economy. No matter who is doing the speaking, it is the same: an argument with a trained debater taking the side.
A nationwide disaster with global repercussions was narrowly avoided recently, along with a controversial lowering of the nation's credit rating. As soon as it was done, the Congress went on vacation. The President is at Camp David.
This is a game to these folks. They get their healthcare – different from what the rest of us get – regardless of their performance, they get paid regardless of the state of the budget, they get perks that never show up in the budget and cannot therefore be cut. Just like in college, when law students went into a debate, argued back and forth, then went out for beers and laughs, these lawyers, who have never worked a real job, never lived off of the money, never worried about their livelihood or that of their family, never worried if they will go broke by visiting a doctor, debated the pros and cons of the budget and then went on vacation.
Who's running the country?
The question is rhetorical. The only possible answer is: irresponsible law students.
What we need, in my humble but well-traveled opinion, is new candidates who have dirt under their nails and histories of running successful businesses, practices or farms. We need senators and congressmen who know what their constituents are going through and are willing and able to represent them responsibly. We need people in Congress who don't follow every tough week with a month-long vacation. And we need a President who knows the difference between good advice and bad advice. And in my personal opinion, giving millions of dollars to a handful of bankers who screwed up so they can screw up again, bigger, and get paid for it, is bad advice. (“Let's give it to AIG, they can't afford their next party.”)
I vote that we consider the education, experience and work history of the next people we vote into office and in the process vote out the Law Students. And I vote that we pass a law that when they are voted out of office or reach their term limits, they are done and are no longer paid – they have to go back to work like the rest of us and live on what they make.
It's just my opinion, but it ought to be yours.