STOP THE TRAIN — The Taxpayer Wants OFF!


by Cynthia Toney, Contributing Writer and Editor, The Bold Pursuit


I recently posed a question to the Republican candidate for U.S. House of Representatives in my district:  “What will you do to stop the momentum that the Democrats in Congress have enjoyed, with the help of some Republicans, in passing one piece of legislation after another?” His answer was on the right track but very short and, I felt, incomplete. So later that evening I attempted to analyze this troubling situation for myself.

There has been a seemingly unstoppable train of legislation coming out of the majority Democrat Congress for the past two years, assisted by some individuals from other parties who seem content with—or perhaps elated by—the rapid growth of our national debt and of government itself. Each time our Senators and Representatives enter into legislative session and jump onto the train, we the taxpayers must desperately cling to our wallets as we are taken on a screaming ride that tears across the landscape of our liberties.

Like any train speeding out of control, the legislation train cannot be examined thoroughly, let alone repaired, while it is still in motion. Because there are so many bills in Congress at any given time, we typically are not aware of the existence of the majority of them, in spite of the fact that they ultimately cost us dearly.

Appropriations bills are relatively simple but sometimes go virtually unnoticed by the public. We are most familiar with appropriations for defense, which is essential to our nation’s survival and which can be financed by the amount of corporate taxes alone. Unfortunately, we seldom hear about appropriations made for foreign countries, under Foreign Operations appropriations. Most taxpayers would be shocked to learn that $48 billion has been appropriated to fight AIDS and other disease in Africa, while millions in the U.S. are unemployed, losing their homes, and unable to pay their own medical bills.

More often than not, bills are mighty behemoths of legal jargon that most members of Congress do not wish to take the time to read, even though it is part of their jobs to do so. Some of us taxpayers take it upon ourselves to read those bills after a long, hard day’s work at our own jobs. In doing so, we find that such large and complicated bills commonly exhibit a feature that may appear within them for very different reasons.

As taxpayers have discovered—often too late—many bills in Congress contain unrelated or lesser pieces of legislation along with the primary legislation.  Sometimes the reason for the inclusion of a lesser but altogether worthy piece of legislation is that the sponsors of the bill hope that the added legislation might garner more support from the opposition for the rest of the bill. The opposition is usually tempted by this ploy; plus, it is almost always concerned that, by voting against too many bills from the other party, it may be accused of playing “partisan politics.” It is my belief that conservative taxpayers would like to see a little more “partisan” right now, as well as a little less “what’s in it for my district or state”. I was pleased to hear the aforementioned Republican candidate for the House say that, if elected, he will have the courage to face his constituents and explain why he cannot vote for a particular bill even though it contains a piece of legislation that would benefit them in some way.

Another reason for including an odd bit of legislation is to try to sneak it into a gigantic bill in the hope that it will go unnoticed. This would be legislation that might ordinarily raise some ire, if not from the opposition in Congress, definitely from the taxpaying public. Take for example the healthcare reform bill (with the comely name Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act), which is now law. Didn’t Nancy Pelosi say that we would find out what was in the bill after it was passed? We now know that it also amends the Internal Revenue Code and expands the scope of Form 1099 to track and tax gold bullion and coin transactions. Nobody was looking for that. Taxpayers were already shaken enough by the fact that the IRS must hire tens of thousands of new agents to make sure that we purchase mandatory health insurance.

It has taken some of us longer than others to realize that almost without exception, each time a new bill passes, bureaucracy grows—sometimes in ways never anticipated—and more taxes are required to implement laws that supposedly are meant to save us money.

With each new bill, a new car is added to the legislation train; the train becomes more powerful and more difficult to stop. As a taxpayer, I would like to know that those Senators and Representatives for whom I vote in the future will stop the legislation train and allow the taxpayers to catch their collective breath.

On November 2, 2010, we must vote for those who will most likely employ the emergency brake to stop this runaway train. When it is finally stopped, we must compel those elected to review, repeal, and/or defund all programs not vital to the strength and prosperity of our nation and its citizens.

© The Bold Pursuit 2010, All Rights Reserved

12 thoughts on “STOP THE TRAIN — The Taxpayer Wants OFF!

  1. Many congressmen and women have become too lazy to do the work needed to analyze a bill… and with a dearth of leadership to show them the pitfalls they just show up and vote and collect their benefits without their constituents benefitting from their knowledge…

  2. I agree totally. Retirements disappear and the country goes further into debt due a misguided loyalty to an outdated economic and ideological principle. We need to cut taxes to enhance growth, particularly where the middle class is concerned. Ms. Toney, you make some excellent points and I am glad you are on our side.

  3. Very ubterestubg, The problem with legislation is the Congressese that it is written in. Fragments of sentences in existing laws are modified in such a way as to make the actual intent of legislation obscure.In this way it is possible to reverse a law by adding a "not" or "shall". Even insertion of a comma would be destructive.

  4. Great article! Our elected stooges don't write these bills, those that benefit do. The Fed and Wall Street wrote the Finance bill, Monsanto writes the agriculture bills, etc. Why do you think that they can't tell us what's in them? Only the lawyers who wrote them know the consequences of these open ended bills, and they are literally open ended. The Finance bill, if I'm not mistaken, creates 3 new departments and THEY get to write the laws that the Fed would like to impose on us and we have to adhere to. No one knows what those are as of yet, the sky's the limit, the wish list limitless! There's no more discussion or debates, just the hiring of more gov thugs to implement them! We're not seated in a passenger train but standing in a cattle car heading to "camp."

  5. Anonymous and TeaParty Lagniappe…So glad that you found this piece interesting and that you too contemplate why legislative bills are as they are. I hope that we can all help wake up other Americans.

  6. Mammoth bills that they don't care to read, slipping (sneaky) things into those bills that no one is aware of… It's out of control. – Briana

  7. Great piece. Taxpayers/voters must be registered and vote, bringing with them everyone they know who realizes the need to stop the train. This is the only force that can stop it. Each election is critical, not just the presidential. Congress must be peopled with representatives that vote according to the will of the people. We still live in a country where we have a voice. We should not miss any opportunity to be heard.

  8. Thank you, Nicolette. We must vote and not be afraid to talk to our friends and family members about the need to stop this train, because others who have been enjoying the ride will certainly do their part to try to ensure that it continues.

  9. Great job, Mom! I find it completely appalling that the health care law, unconstitutional within its own right, is hiding an amendment to the Internal Revenue Code! How are these kinds of operations even legal? The government should realistically represent the people which it governs…it should not be deceiving them in such a way. Who can the taxpayers trust?

  10. Thanks, Abby! I wish that all young people would realize the importance of reading the Constitution and would understand that this document gives the federal government very few rights; however, the government has claimed many for itself.

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