"The most significant threat to our national security is our debt," Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, August 27,2010

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Mr. Boehner's Job

Mr. Boehner is the head of the US House of Representatives. The number one job in that section of the federal government. He was elected to be the boss by a vote of all the representatives. The representatives number 435 and they are elected by the people of the United States, every two years. So, Mr. Boehner, more so than any other person in the federal government, except for the president and the vice president, represents the people of the country. His job description was written over two hundred years ago. It is located in the US constitution; specifically Article I, Sections 7, 8 and 9 and it consists of 18 tasks and duties and responsibilities and limitation thereof. We are going to address just a few of them today; the ones dealing with money and debt. You may read them all at: http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html#A1Sec8

By the way, the constitution grants more power to the House of Representatives than it does to either the president or the senate. The house also has the power of the purse; the money. It is responsible for spending and raising funds. It derives those powers from the constitution and the constitution derives its powers from the people.

Job task #1. Borrow. “To borrow money on the credit of the United States.” It is up to you Mr. Boehner and your house if the US borrows even one more cent while you are running the house. Not the senate; not the president. If you say no, they can only approve or deny but without you there will be no more borrowing. Most say that we have borrowed enough; many say we have borrowed too much. It is on you to make the choice and get the votes to support your choice. It’s YOUR job.

Job task #2. Repay. “…to pay the Debts.” The United States has not repaid any debt in a long time. It just keeps borrowing and borrowing. So, it is also up to you. Do you want to repay some of the debt? It is not up to the president to do so. Nor the senate. It is up to you. Same as above.

Job task #3. Spend. “…provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States.” How much do you want to spend Mr. Boehner? You can set the amount. You can limit the amount. The senate can try to change it but not without you. The president can only say yes or no. The amount is up to you. If the senate tries to change it; it’s on them. if the president says no; it’s on him. You get to set the spending amount.

Job task #4. Raise money. “All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives…The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises.” Want more taxes? Go ahead. Less? It’s up to you. Same as above. Senate can say yes or try to change but then it’s on them. President only has two ways to go – yes or no. if he says no, it’s on him.

Job task #5. Report. “No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time.” The people deserve a simple, accurate and timely reporting from you. It’s your job. We don’t get a simple, accurate and timely report. It should include everything. No hidden items. Sorry CIA, Federal Reserve, DofD and all the other secret pockets of spending. The constitution requires a report to the people and you are not doing it in a simple, concise, accurate, complete (that means everything including those commitments that the children will be paying) and timely (within 90 days of the end of the period) manner. It’s your job. Let’s start doing it.

Are you up to the job Mr. Boehner? You asked for the job. You had better be up to it but so far you are stumbling around. Trying to make compromises. Temporary placation efforts. Trying to keep the peace. Passing short term measures and nibbling at the corners of your specific (see above) job responsibilities.

Here’s something to think about. You are in your job today because the people have spoken. You and you alone are the most powerful person in the United States with a recent mandate to stop spending; stop borrowing and start repaying debt. And, start reporting accurately to the people. It is a big job because all around you are special interests and protected classes of citizens who do not want any change in their goodies; their special deals; their programs and, if you get a government paycheck, their jobs.

Six years ago, your party was in power in the house and you all voted to increase the debt limit. You lost power in the next election. Two years ago the other guys with the power voted to increase the debt limit and they promptly lost power. Now you have it. This action/reaction is not accidental. The people put you in power to do your job. If you decide your job is to keep spending/borrowing/debt raising/not debt repaying you too will be gone soon.

Mr. Boehner, please do your job. Don’t worry about the senate and the president. The people are with you. The senate can do whatever they choose. It is unlikely that the senate will be under the control of the current group in a matter of months. The president has chosen to become the evangelist in chief; the spreader of the goodies; the take care guy; the no one left to fend for themselves guru. He can do that. His job duties are minimal and pretty loosely defined. He actually gets paid to talk. You have real job duties.

You get paid to do something. Your duties are defined. Please do your job.

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