The following three paragraphs are from an article written by Michael Scherer for Time.com:
"In his campaign kickoff last Saturday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry burnished his conservative credentials by attacking the idea of deficit stimulus spending. 'Washington's insatiable desire to spend our children's inheritance on failed stimulus plans and other misguided economic theories have given us record debt and left us with far too many unemployed,' he said.
"But it was not always so for Perry. Back in 2003, lobbyists under Perry's direction went to Capitol Hill to lobby the Republican Congress for more than a billion dollars in federal deficit spending on 'stimulus.' And they won. A 2005 report by the Texas Office of State-Federal Relations boasted of $1.2 billion in temporary state fiscal relief to Texas through Medicaid that Perry's lobbying operation had secured.
"And that was just the beginning. The same report details millions more that flowed from the federal treasure into Texas as a result of the official state lobbying campaign, which was overseen by Perry, a Republican Lt. governor and the Republican speaker of the state house between 2003 and 2005. In several cases, the Texas lobbying campaign won funds for programs that Perry now says he opposes as fiscally irresponsible intrusions on state responsibilities."
The article goes on to itemize other monies gained from the Feds but you get the picture. It's the mantra of today's politicians, regardless of party. When we're in power, we're for it but when you're in power and you want the same thing, we're against it. That's why the filibuster has been used an inordinate amount of times over the past couple of years because if the Democrats are for something, the Republicans are against it, regardless of what it is.
My good friend Dick Trail recently wrote about compromise amounting to nothing more than giving in but I don't see compromise like that at all. For example, I'm on the negotiating team at the college for future wages and benefits. Each time we do this, we present a proposal and the Board of Governors counters with their own. We jockey back and forth until a number is reached that both sides can live with. Some people might call it compromising, we call it negotiating. The Board knows the most they're going to pay us and we know what we want. We come down a little, they come up a little and we meet at a place both of us can accept. If we think they're being totally unfair, we can take our case to the Committee on Industrial Relations and a judge will hear both sides and then make a ruling. We've never had to do that in the seventeen years I've been at the college.
But it doesn't work that way in politics. There is no compromising and there is no negotiating. There isn't because every elected official knows where they come from and know what they have to say and do to get re-elected and that's their biggest concern. Our elected officials in Washington no longer tend to the people's business, they do whatever they have to do to get re-elected.
I've never been a term-limit guy but I've changed my mind on that after watching Congress belie the trust of the people time and time again. I think the only way to get things accomplished is to make sure NOBODY can run for re-election. Two term Presidents get the most done during their second term in office because in their first term they're running for re-election and in their second term they're not.
Let's raise a U.S. Senator's term from six year to eight, a Representative's term from two years to four and then bring them home and send somebody else.
No Congressman gets to run for re-election so those millions and millions of dollars donated by special interest groups who hope to curry favor with Congressmen can go someplace more productive. If every Congressman voted their conscience instead of currying to the people back home in the District, I think we would see a drastically different result and one that would most certainly raise the approval rate of Congressmen up from the paltry 18 percent it currently is, which is the lowest approval rating ever.
And, by the way, there's a constant storm of protest against "the government" with people saying the government can't do this and shouldn't be doing that but remember that you can't go to Washington and have a cup of coffee with "the government." The government is made up of real, live flesh-and-blood human beings, most of whom we sent there through the elective process. So the only way you can change government is to change the people who represent it.
On the other hand, if we keep on doing what we've always done, we'll keep on getting what we've always gotten.