Despite the dire warnings of our forefathers as to the divisive nature of political parties, after two centuries the American political system has managed to become burdened with two distinct camps. The Democratic Party tries for progressive reform and community support, while the Republican Party attempts to maintain ‘conservative family values’ and a free market economy. Both have been failing us at an ever-increasing rate for decades.
At first glance, each party seems to care about advancing aspects of what makes America the proverbial shining city on the hill, just different ones. But anything more than a cursory look shows us that reality is much worse. Each party tries to either label veterans damaged or dangerous or use us as political pawns while stripping every dollar away from greatly needed veteran services. The current voting trends of active duty and veteran populations show that there isn’t the clean-cut voting pattern one might assume across the board, so why not go just a small bit further?
Readers, allow me to introduce you to the Service Party. Harkening back to the true purpose of government, which is to serve its people rather than grow fat on them like parasites, the Service Party has a simple yet effective platform containing many of the much-needed reforms that would be almost impossible to pass today.
Term Limits – Citizen Representation is Not Full Time Employment
No member of the legislation would serve a consecutive term in any office, and during their time in office would be expected to maintain normal employment in some capacity. Where will they have the time to accomplish their elected duties? Without wasting time trying to raise money for reelection, or grandstanding for the press and soaking up airtime, Service Party members can get down to their jobs, making the business of government far more efficient.
Fair Wages – Government Administration Shouldn’t Make You Rich
We all Remember, making jokes about trips being paid less than minimum wage for some of the most demanding jobs on the planet.
Service Party Members would push for the idea that a member of Congress or the Senate should have their salary tied to the median income of their home state. There is no excuse available to explain why someone who doesn’t serve the interests of their constituents is somehow entitled to a six-figure income. By making this link into law, legislators will be incentivized to build up the wealth in their communities, instead of their own portfolios. The added benefit of saving the taxpayer money is a nice bonus too.
In addition to limiting their direct pay, other sources of income will be highly scrutinized to ensure there is no pay for play. Any attempt to give an elected official money must meet the highest level of professional ethics so that money gets spent in appropriate, community focused ways.
Keeping Our Word – Serving Those Who Serve
America is at its strongest when it keeps its word and does what it says. From Veterans and Active-Duty service members to law enforcement, fire services, and emergency medical personnel, and continuing down the line of those who serve the community, the government that employs the best of us will be required to take care of them as well.
In addition to the obvious issues like managing the VA and improving situations for active-duty service members, careers such as teaching, vocational training, and social work would be improved dramatically. Increased pay (with increased standards to match), benefits, and the funding necessary to properly execute their vocations to improve their communities would be ensured on a state and federal level.
There is a list a mile long of potential platforms for the Service Party, which will be an ongoing project of this author to compile. As long as we rely on people who no longer understand the concept of service to their community and only seek to enrich themselves and bloated donors, we cannot move forward as a country. Maybe it’s time to set the Service Party in motion and course correct our great nation back to becoming the shining city on the hill we have always tried to be.