Congress, voters need to face consequences


In the Sunday paper, Mark Sheehy sent in an excellent letter to the editor ( “American may face a socialist future”). Sheehy’s letter was easy to understand, fact-backed, refrained from name calling, and instead of just complaining about the thought process he disagrees with, he actually made suggestions to help opposing positions to possibly find a middle ground.

I would like to add to Sheehy’s idea that everyone should have to pay taxes, even if they are being giving financial support for their living expenses with nothing expected in return. In more generic terms, he is really referring to the concept that if you don’t have any skin in the game, there is no commitment to winning the game, because in the end, you have nothing to lose.

I think that is the exact concept which is keeping both sides from finding a middle ground. Congress is not financially tied to any of the programs that are being proposed because they have set themselves up so their financial and health care well-being is independent of any of the programs they enact. Why on earth would they have any reason to compromise; they’re all set no matter what happens. If we want them to start working together, we need to force them to have some skin in the game by eliminating the independent nest egg they have set up for themselves.

As for everyone having to pay taxes, let me expand on that idea. Why was the somewhat arbitrary age of 18 picked for people to be able to start voting? Why should people who don’t work and aren’t living on their own have the privilege of voting? They don’t pay taxes, or have to worry about how bills are going to get paid to make sure they have a place to live and food to eat. This person has no skin in the financial game of life, and as such, won’t care about the financial implications of their vote. If the vote benefits them with no financial downside, of course they are going to vote for it.

So, let’s all push, both liberals and conservatives, to eliminate Congress’s independent nest egg so they start to actually work together, and at the same time, push to change the voting laws so only people who work and live on their own have the privilege of voting. These simple changes will make everyone have some skin in the game, and have an incentive for all of us to win.

Robby Hoffman