It is evident that American’s tolerance of government’s malfeasance hasn’t reached its limits yet because there hasn’t been a voter revolt. There is a continuum of government failures, politicians’ misdemeanors, and bureaucratic abuses that voters gripe about but tolerate. The latest Rasmussen poll (July 2009) shows Congressional approval rate at 18%.

Recording all of the government failures would probably deplete the memory capacity of the most powerful computer available today. FEMA’s mishandling of Hurricane Katrina, Social Security’s millions of payments to deceased persons, Medicare’s inability to stop fraud, the Defense Department’s unaccountability of payments for the Iraq war, Amtrak’s continuous losses since its inception, and the Post Office’s losses -while raising the cost of stamps – coupled with the reduction of service are some examples that readily come to mind.

The latest fiasco is the issuance of credit cards to Federal Employees without adequate supervision. According to the July 5, 2009 issue of Parade, giving them credit cards resulted in charges going from $4.39 billion in 1999 to $8.28 billion last year. The Congress Research Service reported that charges included $4,100 for first class air fare to Hawaii, $3,700 for laser surgery, and $100 million in unclaimed refunds for airline tickets that were purchased but never used.

Repeated reports of members of Congress’ abusing the privilege of their position don’t seem to affect their re-election. Directing federal un-bid contracts to a spouse, sweetheart mortgages, purchasing the securities of corporations prior to enactment of favorable legislation, hiring of relatives, and accepting favors in various forms are the modus operandi currently.

This year, the hypocritical Congress accepted more than a $4,600 pay raise during this recession. Every year, members of Congress are taking more overseas trips. According to a study by the Wall Street Journal, $13 million was spent for 60,000 overseas delegations or codels in 2008. These elected officials pay a tiny fraction of the actual travel costs for their families, staffs, and themselves. Many of these sojourns have multiple destinations, often to exotic lands. The families rush to raid United States Post Exchanges for bargains, whenever there is one available.

The public is so caught up in blaming the Democrats and/or the Republicans that they don’t recognize the real problem are the career Congressmen. These abuses are by members of both political parties. What more will it take to arouse Americans to vote these rascals out of office? 

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