Saturday, May 09, 2009

Who watches the watchers, and why lobbyist restrictions are dumb

Lobbyists don't vote on legislation. In the end, it's the politician who foists bad legislation on us, not the lobbyist. Blaming lobbyists for bad lawmaking infantilizes our Congressmen. They can't control themselves, they got a free plane ride and had to vote a certain way on a bill!

Whether it's the lobbyists fault, because Congressmen are children with no self-control, or whether it is Congressmens' fault, controls on lobbyists solve nothing. We need controls on Congress.

An independent oversight board made up of people from the private sector should be set up, appointed by all three branches evenly(say, three appointed by the President, three by Congress, and three by er, maybe the Chief Justice.) They would serve as long as desired. They would have the power to investigate ethics infractions by Congressmen by majority vote, and the power to remove Congressmen from office by 2/3rds vote.

Congress constantly screams about oversight of everything. Of the executive branch, of the private sector, but never of themselves. Yet Congress contains a higher percentage of corrupt members than the business world, the executive branch, or anywhere else. They have proven themselves unable to self-regulate. Outside regulation must be established over Congress.