My Word: ‘This is just a stupid way to conduct the business of our country’

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By Rik Jeans

If a bill were to be introduced in congress to cure cancer, end a world war, or otherwise make the world a better place, someone, Democrat or Republican, would hang a piece of pork on it, causing it to fail to pass. This is just a stupid way to conduct the business of our country. I was a business executive earlier in my life and since, have served on two different local boards. As such, I have participated in many group decisions and never once, did a single instance, of tacking additional trivia to an important decision occur. It can be difficult enough to achieve a majority vote on a single issue let alone on one with a hodgepodge of add-ons.

I understand the difference. We were not beholden to a fickle electorate. We did not have to run for office every two or four years. We would gain nothing by clouding an issue with something which would please our own constituents. Human nature prevails however and, within the current system, nothing is going to change.

Could this problem be rectified? Of course it could but, unfortunately, those who could effect change in the system are the very ones who abuse it to the greatest extent. One simple rule could end this nonsense. ELIMINATE the add-ons. Important legislative decisions should NEVER be fettered by add-ons. If a legislator feels that there is an issue important to his or her constituents, he or she can submit a bill for consideration and can make a case for its passage. The current way that Congress conducts business is childish and unproductive. It should be changed.

Rik Jeans resides in Mad River.

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