Congress should avoid distractions and focus on debt

Floyd Dominick /

Published Feb 23, 2013 at 04:00AM

Open letter to Senators Wyden and Merkley: I understand that the Budget Control Act of 1974 as amended requires you to pass a budget resolution by April 15 each year. You have violated that law for four years. What should your penalty be for not complying with the law? Forfeit your pay? Go to jail? I realize you politicians, particularly you lawyers, can weasel out of anything. I am required to pay thousands of dollars of income tax each year, under penalty of law. Should we the people ignore the law like you do? Why should we voluntarily give you so much money if you refuse to tell us how you plan to spend it?

I realize that each of you are only one hundredth of the problem. Harry Reid has not allowed a floor vote on a budget for nearly four years. Where does he get the power and authority to violate the law? He was elected by less than 0.1 percent of the population. When he calls people dictators, he should be looking in a mirror.

The current public distraction from the impending catastrophe of the debt/spending problem is gun control. The “assault weapons ban” from 1994 to 2004 did not have a discernible effect on gun crimes during the years it was in effect. It did infringe on my, and millions of others’, right to buy our guns of choice. Automatic assault weapons were outlawed for civilians in 1934 in response to the effects of Prohibition. The very definition of insanity is repeating an action and expecting different results. Of possible use would be to prohibit “gun-free zones” on federally financed property. Nearly all mass shooters were attracted to these. The recent Clackamas mall shooter was allegedly stopped at two dead by a legally armed citizen without firing. When confronted, the shooter fled and committed suicide before first responders arrived.

Your latest atrocity was the passage of the “fiscal cliff” bill just past the midnight deadline. You voted for $77 billion to $86 billion of pork spending, more than the first year’s revenue of the tax rate increase on the successful. Did you get Oregon’s “fair share?” You had the House version of the bill for months and could have amended it and proceeded with the normal reconciliation process. Instead you (Harry Reid) delayed the process to the last minute and then jacked up the House resolution number and drove under a “middle of the night” replacement bill. This constitutional sham was presumably done to include your pork and force the House to accept it. The constitution you swore to uphold.

I concede you Democrats are much better at playing the political game. I realize that to ensure re-election in the current political/election system you must pay your contributors with pork/tax breaks and keep the “free stuff” flowing to your voters. You politically cornered the House to pass President Obama’s demand to raise taxes on the rich with a “balanced” bill with $600 billion tax increases and $15 billion “spending cuts.” But the advertised purpose of the bill, to decrease the deficit, did the opposite.

You increased the deficit this year and added $4 trillion to the debt over 10 years. Our current per capita debt ($52,000) is twice that of Greece. To paraphrase a former senator: “To steal from our children and grandchildren to support our current spending is immoral and unpatriotic.”

What does that make him and you now? We the people are very tired of your political games. Is it any wonder that Congress’ standing is lower than a cockroach?