Let me start by saying that I have no problem with people earning money, getting rich or even getting "filthy rich" as they say. I support capitalism, I oppose socialism. That said, what I DO see however is something many people miss. Politicians who game the system with the ultimate goal of getting rich.
POLITICO is reporting that "It’s that time of year again in Washington, when congressmen who once ran for office calling for change inside the Beltway are heading straight to K Street." They then go on to list the names of former members of Congress who will soon be making tons of dough off of their resume.
As the POLITICO article notes
Sure, there are some rules: Outgoing House members must wait one year until they may lobby their former colleagues. For departing senators, it’s two years, and violating the ban could lead to legal trouble.
And even after any waiting period is up, high-profile hires simply aren’t bothering to declare themselves as lobbyists anymore, using opaque titles such as “adviser” that could mean anything.
For example, news this week was that former Congressman Geoff Davis has joined the Washington DC lobbying firm of Hunter Bates, a former staffer with Mitch McConnell. Nothing wrong with that, and I don't assign any blame or criticism to Geoff for finding a private sector job.
But tonight in Boone County three men will address a dinner audience filled with people who presumably support them and their service in office.
Is there any chance that they are using their time of public trust to feather their own nests? I've already mentioned how much wealth Mitch McConnell has accumulated while in the Senate. And we all know the millions of dollars the Ron Paul organization makes.
Has Thomas Massie seen a path to riches for himself in Congress? Does he need the money? We don't know yet because of his delay in filing the required financial disclosure statements, but isn't there room for cynicism when those men step before an audience of supporters and feed them the rhetoric they want to hear?
Famous performers rarely get an audience solidly enthralled with their performances unless they play the same old tunes, re-play their hits and give the audience what they want. As Rush once said, politics is Hollywood for the unattractive.
For my friends going to the dinner tonight, keep an open mind. Are you being played by people who get nothing done except build their own reputations, increase their own popularity, gain riches on a well marked path to riches and who count on your "hopefulness" that this time things will be different?
Maybe they will be different. But instead of trying to sell you on it, why not make them prove it? Would you continue to pay a house painter on his promise that when he got done your place would be beautiful, but who never seems to do more than make the occasional brush stroke in between rambling promises?
We pay these guys, they get rich, they build their resume, they move on to even more lucrative careers and we get stuck holding the bag.
Instead of applause tonight, how about some pitchforks and torches (figuratively speaking only). How about some shouted demands for progress. How about taking over the event with real voices of discontent and insistence that they stop playing politics and start doing the hard work?
Wanna be heard? Then don't just jump to your feet and cheer, jump to your feet and DEMAND.
You've got them all in one place, at one time. Let them know exactly how you feel and exactly what you expect. Let them know that your vote and your support is conditioned upon accomplishment, not showmanship. Don't squander the opportunity by the expected show of fawning support.