I think one of our biggest problems is that people become career politicians. Because of that, the decisions they make are automatically the decisions that are best for their CAREER, not the best for the people they represent.
Holding political office is a duty, not a job. You're serving your country, not yourself. I suggest that we do away with the entire political 'pension' system. This way, politicians would be forced to maintain some sort of 'other' career outside of their political duties. It would be simple to institute job protection laws for them, much as we have them for maternity leave and such. But it should, in the long run, hopefully make holding political office something that people do out of a sense of responsibility to the nation, not out of a longing for political power.
Granted, in our society, this would never work. The current political elite would never relinquish their position. But just think about how much money we'd be saving the country if we weren't paying people for holding office until they died.
Presidential Pension: $168,300 a year in 2001
And if you were a senator or governor first? You get to add that to those other pensions, too.
Al Gore? Don't feel bad for him. America pays him $94,800 a year to sit around, get fat and grow a beard.
That's almost as good as winning the lottery.
If my closet wasn't so filled with bones, I'd run...