A Committee of Correspondence

A Committee of Correspondence

America vs. Our Imperial Congress: A History of Tea Bag Protests

What follows is taken from the Heritage Foundation Web site. We edited it and posted it here because it is WELL worth our time to read and consider. We sought this out because of a dim recollection of the first time we tried to tell Congress that we didn’t approve of what they were doing by sending them tea bags. This memory began nagging at the back of our minds when the Tea Parties movement resumed after Barack H. Obama’s initial moments in office.

On November 7, 2009, the House, late on a Saturday night, passed a “health care bill” that WILL, at best, cripple our children’s future. It might well destroy our children’s future. They passed this heinous bill on a weekend AND despite vehement protest by taxpayers. The press was all about how it was looking impossible. And yet Pelosi managed to snatch this abomination away from the jaws of defeat with a little help from Barack who is absolutely gifted at sniffing out weakness and then terrorizing it into doing whatever he wants. Unfortunately for us, the taxpayers, there are MANY members of Congress unequipped with a spine — never mind a moral compass.

The Senate has yet to sign off on this and once again the State-run media is “allaying our fears” by telling us that the Senate probably won’t pass this abominable bill. We are sure that is just another lullaby to put all of us taxpayers back to sleep so the Congress can complete its criminal work unmolested in darkness.

This first sending of tea bags to Congress occurred in late 1988- early 1989. Now read the sequel taken from the Heritage Foundation Web site:

December 14,1989
CONGRESS VS. AMERICA: HOW CONGRESS RAISES ITS OWN PAY

Only ten months after an avalanche of public opposition blocked its fifty percent pay raise plan, Congress successfully engineered a sizeable pay hike for itself in the waning moments of the 1989 congressional session. It was a bipartisan, midnight raid on the Treasury, passed under the guise of congressional ethics reform and it would eventually cost taxpayers more than $100 million annually! It lifted the salaries of House members to $125,000 per year by 1991, a 40 percent raise, and then of Senators to be equal to that of Representatives.

With the pay boost, United States legislators received larger pay checks than 98 percent of American workers. Members of Congress earned four times more than the median income American wage earner.

Moreover, more than 300 legislators were elevated to the ranks of pension millionaires when they retired!

A case can be made, of course, that the 535 women and men who make the nation’s laws deserve to be among the top 2 percent. (Editorial Note: We don’t buy that argument. Congress is supposed to work for us. Since when do employees make more than the owners?!?!?!) This pay raise was a provision of the “Government Ethics Reform Act of 1989” which specified that legislators’ lifetime retirement pensions would exceed $1 million.

What cannot be justified is the way that Congress raises its salaries. Were the executive branch or businesses or private individuals to act in a similar way, they would be universally denounced (surely by members of Congress) and probably tossed into jail. The way that Democrats and Republicans in Congress enacted their pay hikes once again demonstrates that it is Congress vs. America.

Many Americans justifiably were outraged by the clandestine methods Congress used to secure this pay hike. The details of the pay raise package were kept secret until less than 24 hours before lawmakers voted on it. They did this as dictatorial regimes worldwide would to mute public opposition to their salary grab. Debate in the House was limited to just two hours. After the House approved the bill, more than a dozen high-ranking House members marched to the Senate to press their upper chamber colleagues to follow suit or as it was put by Roll Call, a weekly journal that monitors Congress, “mobbing their colleagues in the cloak room and on the Senate floor.” To secure the pay raise, the Senate even unashamedly waived a rule of the budget act prohibiting introduction of bills that would increase the deficit. Observed one high ranking Senate aide: “If Congressmen worked half as hard to reduce the deficit as they did to pass this pay increase, we would surely have a balanced budget by now.”

The Star Chamber proceedings to pass the pay hike were bad enough. Much worse is the agreement between Democrat and GOP congressional leaders to form a pact to prevent Americas voters from learning the truth about the pay hikes. They promised each other that they would not make an issue of the hikes in next year’s congressional election campaigns. In effect, the two parties were conspiring to choke off any political opposition to the pay raise. The Democratic and Republican Congressional Campaign Committees agreed to withhold campaign funds from challengers in the 1990 elections who criticized an incumbent for voting for the pay raise. According to a written agreement known as the “non-aggression pact” signed by top leaders of both parties: “The vote on [this bill] is not an appropriate point of criticism in the coming campaigns. We will publicly oppose the use of this issue in any campaign in the 1990 cycle.”


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