An Ol' Broad's Ramblings
Archive for 4 June 2012
TN lawmakers’ fundraisers not for the poor
High-end events are ‘standard,’ but few can go
As summer heats up and Election Day draws near, opportunities to hobnob with Tennessee lawmakers won’t be hard to find.
Supporters can go shooting with Rep. Stephen Fincher, spend a weekend in Nashville with Sen. Lamar Alexander, cheer on the Nashville Sounds with Rep. Jim Cooper, dine at Ruth’s Chris Steak House with Rep. Scott DesJarlais or head to the Honors Course in Ooltewah for a golf weekend with Sen. Bob Corker.
But the price tag isn’t cheap. In exchange for some time with the lawmakers, individual backers must contribute anywhere from $250 to more than $1,000. Political action committees are asked to hand over at least $1,000.
We aren’t all rich Hollyweird types, with money to toss out to our ‘favorite politician’. The majority of us really can’t afford to ‘hobnob’, especially these days (thanks to Hollyweird’s favorite politician). So, what do us regular folk do when wanting to express our concerns to OUR employees? Well, we send emails, write letters, and make phone calls. And what response do we get, IF we get a response at all? A flippin’ ‘form letter’. Yup…that’s how OUR employees communicate with us lowly voters…..’form letters’. How do I know? Because us wee folk out here in the real world have compared those letters, and they are typically, WORD FOR WORD, exactly the same.
“Races are more expensive today,” said Steven Livingston, a professor of political science at Middle Tennessee State University. “If you’re going to ask someone for a huge sum of money, you can’t do it over a ham sandwich.”
And just why the hell not? Are they too damn good to eat a ham sandwich? So, why are ‘races more expensive today’? Many would say the politicians are being ‘bought’, and y’know….I’m more inclined to agree with those ‘many’ day by day, because evidently, no matter what WE want, or don’t want, need or don’t need, OUR employees are thumbing their noses at us.
Critics say swanky, high-priced events limit the average constituent’s access to politicians.
Let’s face it, if it weren’t for us common folk, who do the voting, those politicians would have to actually get out, and get a flippin’ job with the rest of us peons. If these…..people…really want to ‘serve the public’…..that would be us, then why can’t they foot the bill for themselves? The majority of these clowns are freakin’ MILLIONAIRES, and I don’t think it would hurt them one bit to throw a bash serving coffee and doughnuts, or ham sandwiches, for the people who vote them into those offices, at the cost of maybe $5 to $10. They could spend a few weeks, here and there…while on recess, going from town to town, “hobnobbing” with their actual constituents, hearing what WE have to say, instead of listening to the ‘special interests’ that, apparently, are buying votes in Congress. We would much appreciate them listening to us, and not listening to their canned speeches. I’d also make sure that all attendees show ID, to prove they live in the area. I’m sure you can figure out why.
When you think about it, those people spend a whole lot more time in D.C., or whatever state capital, than they need to, or even should. If it ain’t in the Constitution (national or state), it ain’t your job! And here’s another item to contemplate…. not only do we, the voters, their bosses, contribute money to get them elected, we also pay their salaries, health care, pensions, and any other perk they come up with on a regular basis. Anyone else see a problem here? Cut their salaries to the same level as any private in the military, make them pay for their own health care, NO pensions, and NO perks! I’m fairly sure, if they are serious about serving, they can do it on their own dime, without such large sums of money from us, don’cha think?
I understand environmental concerns. I really do. But what is more important? The health and well being of our country, or some mosquito? The ability to get our children to school, go out and look for jobs, keep our homes warm, and pay reasonable prices at the grocery store are all part of keeping our nation ‘in the pink’. The policies of this current resident of the White House, and his minions, have done more damage to our economy that most 3rd world dictators. Ok…maybe that’s a stretch, but not by much!
If even I can understand the simple economics of how the price of gas is affecting EVERYTHING, then you’d think those who claim to be SO SMART could figure it out as well! Either ignorance, or preference, is bankrupting our country. Opening up new avenues would do wonders for all aspects of American life. Just plain getting the hell out of the way would definitely be a good start! “Getting out of the way” would have to include the EPA…which should be abolished ASAP! Their purpose was not to grow into the monster they have become, thwarting Americans at every turn.
Ten Ways to Lower Gas Prices
The average price of a gallon of regular gas is now $3.66, and has been decreasing for eight straight weeks. This is causing some of the President Obama’s advisers to declare energy prices an irrelevant issue. Political adviser David Axelrod recently tweeted: “Gas prices have been going down for the past six weeks. You think the GOP will blame the President?”
In those six weeks, the only significant energy policy change at the White House was to make new coal production nearly impossible and thus vastly increase the cost of electricity. So, it is hard to assign this slight dip to the president after a record 75 straight weeks of prices exceeding $3.00. However, it is true that the president is not entirely responsible for gas prices.
Market and economic conditions play a large role. With unemployment creeping back up, new global turmoil and summer travel on the wane due to a sagging economy, demand is surely dropping. But that does not mean, and has never meant, that the president’s policies or Congressional action does not play any role in gas prices.
After three years of adding regulatory hurdles and blocking exploratory access and development, President Obama’s policies are helping keep prices higher than necessary. Having only three percent of federal land available for oil exploration is not a “market condition.”