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Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:37 AM

Warren Buffet is a genius, this was just posted on facebook by a friend

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:

"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election.

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971 - before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year or less to become the law of the land - all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

Congressional Reform Act of 2012

1. No Tenure / No Pension.

A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they're out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security.

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void effective 12/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen/women.

Congress made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will only take three days for most people (in the U.S. ) to receive the message. Don't you think it's time?

THIS IS HOW YOU FIX CONGRESS!

If you agree, pass it on. If not, delete. You are one of my 20+ - Please keep it going, and thanks

I thought I could pass it on to more than 20.

37 replies, 5794 views

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Reply Warren Buffet is a genius, this was just posted on facebook by a friend (Original post)
Democrat 4 Ever Nov 2012 OP
Brickbat Nov 2012 #1
Democrat 4 Ever Nov 2012 #2
pinboy3niner Nov 2012 #6
xtraxritical Nov 2012 #21
unblock Nov 2012 #3
pinboy3niner Nov 2012 #4
FredStembottom Nov 2012 #13
xtraxritical Nov 2012 #22
FredStembottom Nov 2012 #33
freshwest Nov 2012 #14
pinboy3niner Nov 2012 #18
freshwest Nov 2012 #19
freshwest Nov 2012 #20
ProgressoDem Nov 2012 #31
central scrutinizer Nov 2012 #5
xxqqqzme Nov 2012 #25
hfojvt Nov 2012 #7
freshwest Nov 2012 #15
DireStrike Nov 2012 #27
pansypoo53219 Nov 2012 #8
freshwest Nov 2012 #16
bvar22 Nov 2012 #9
BlueStreak Nov 2012 #23
nadinbrzezinski Nov 2012 #10
freshwest Nov 2012 #17
BlueStreak Nov 2012 #24
freshwest Nov 2012 #30
BlueStreak Nov 2012 #34
freshwest Nov 2012 #35
BlueStreak Nov 2012 #36
BlueMan Votes Nov 2012 #11
freshwest Nov 2012 #26
pinboy3niner Nov 2012 #12
Matariki Nov 2012 #28
judesedit Nov 2012 #29
fasttense Nov 2012 #32
Bucky Nov 2012 #37

Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:39 AM

1. Buffett did say that about ending the deficit. The rest of the e-mail has nothing to do with him.

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Response to Brickbat (Reply #1)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 10:40 AM

2. Well, crap, knew I should have done a little research. Sorry folks.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 11:42 AM

6. You can self-delete this OP

That would seem to be the best course.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Reply #2)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:23 PM

21. I agree with Buffet's proposition but not the rest of the enumerated points.

 

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 11:23 AM

3. cheap rhetoric is hardly the mark of genius

in the pantheon of billionaires, buffet has a few good things on his side. he seems to be one of the few non-sociopaths, for starters.

but to say congress would take action if we lit a fire under them is neither particularly brilliant nor particularly helpful.



i mean, heck, rhetorically, we could get them to take a whole lot of action with this logic. make them ineligible to run if unemployment is every over 10%, if any war lasts more than 3 years, if poverty rates are too high, etc.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 11:32 AM

4. Not true. See "Warren Buffett and the Mythical 'Congressional Reform Act'"...

Warren Buffett and the Mythical 'Congressional Reform Act'
By Susan Milligan

March 13, 2012

Why are so many members of Congress retiring?

Look no further than the following spam E-mail, which purports to be a petition of sorts circulated by billionaire and reform advocate Warren Buffett. It says:

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise. In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

...



Actually, it's not at all how you fix Congress. But more to the point, the fake "petition" is filled with inaccuracies about Congress.

...


http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/susan-milligan/2012/03/13/warren-buffett-and-the-mythical-congressional-reform-act


Other factcheck sites provide more debunking of this.

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:46 PM

13. My crap alerter went off just reading it.

Just an expansion on the simplistic term limits idea that has been around forever. And suffers the same problem: what would fill the vacuum as congress churns inexperienced short termers in and out?

(The most entertaining answer to that question be found by watching Yes, Minister)

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Response to FredStembottom (Reply #13)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:26 PM

22. Term limits are a terrible idea.

 

Corporations will bankroll their favorites and when they are elected they will be beholding to no one but their masters. Politician worrying about reelection must worry about the electorate.

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Response to xtraxritical (Reply #22)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 02:38 PM

33. ++++++

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:10 PM

14. Thank you.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #14)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:17 PM

18. Brickbat jumped in first

But since the OP author failed to self-delete the post, the number of recs has gone from 10 to 30...no, make that 31.

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #18)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:20 PM

19. I noticed the Recs, too. Flying by, I guess, didn't read. I'll look for Brickbat's post, too.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #19)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:21 PM

20. Wait, where is that? Oh, never mind. We're just enouraging this thread. I'm gone.

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:39 PM

31. My general rule: Don't trust anything on Facebook.

Especially those big amateurish pictures with the text pasted on the top.

At the very least, people should just type a section of the text into Google. Not that hard, and if it's a scam, it's the first thing that comes up.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 11:39 AM

5. Just what we need - 435 Reps and 33 Senators with no experience running the country

Sounds like a lobbyist's wet dream

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Response to central scrutinizer (Reply #5)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:29 PM

25. Agree. California is sufering from

insanely limited term limits. Just as the electeds are learning the ropes - out they go.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 11:58 AM

7. this crap is not worth passing on

First, as if the deficit is our major problem.

Second, as if Congressional pensions are the major problem with Congress. In the first place, many just seem to die in office. In the second place, to eliminate pensions would just create a big incentive for them to get cushy lobbying jobs.

Third, many, if not most jobs, have a pension AND social security, and fourth not all Americans "purchase their own retirement". Even my own retirement, although I pay 4% of my salary for it, is largely paid for by my employer.

Fifth, point four is really stupid. It is like the writer is unaware of the 27th Amendment, which already reads "No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened."

Sixth, there is no "health care system" in America. There is only insurance - some people have good insurance, some have bad insurance and some have no insurance. And there are varying levels of employer contribution. For the decent insurance, my employer pays 100% for a single person, 75% for a couple and 75% for a family. Slightly better insurance is available for an extra $32.43 a month for a single person, $20.57 a month for a couple, or $19.55 for a family.

Seventh, I doubt if it is legal to just void any contract you decide you don't like.

We the people, ALREADY have the option of voting these bozos out of office every two years. The fact that we usually don't seems to indicate that we have the Congress that we want, or at least that a majority of voters wants.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:11 PM

15. Excellent points.

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:32 PM

27. Yep exactly.

Deficit spending can be a useful tool. Absolutist measures like this are rarely as effective as they seem. For one thing, it would force us into an austerity budget, which would be disastrous for the economy.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:19 PM

8. he forgot to exile grover norquist.

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Response to pansypoo53219 (Reply #8)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:11 PM

16. The chief cause of the deficit, this is just cheap shots.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:37 PM

9. We could solve MOST of our problems using this method.

*Frivolous Foreign Military Adventures?
The immediate and extended families of our Congress go FIRST

*Deterioration of Public Schools?
The children of our Congressmen must go to our Public Schools

*Poor access to Health Care for Americans?
Every American entitled to the exact same Health care as Congressmen

*Stagnant Wages for the Working Class?
Every time Congress Raises their pay, the minimum wage is raised the same percentage




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Response to bvar22 (Reply #9)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:27 PM

23. Buffet's proposal would force compromise

Either we compromise or we all lose our jobs. Very powerful. And notice it doesn't say:

1) Exactly how much we can or should spend. That is up to Congress to debate, but if the answer is the deficit is more than 3%, they ALL lose their jobs.

2) It doesn't say that you have to make across-the-board cuts. If you can get a majority of your colleagues to agree that we should spend 5 times as much on "defense" as is necessary to defend the American people, so be it. But you'll have to get them to agree to pay for it with higher taxes or else agree to cuts elsewhere.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:40 PM

10. Hasn't this been debunked by snopes?

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #10)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:12 PM

17. See pinboy's reply, thoroughly debunked, nadin.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #17)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:28 PM

24. No, not thoroughly debunked. The first statement is definitely

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #24)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:39 PM

30. Deficit hawk while millions are impoverished? Not a good idea.

Getting rid of all those people who don't have lobbyists to steal the national treasury with MIC spending is not a moral thing to do. Getting rid of Congress people who vote as constituents elected them to do by passing the ACA, protecting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to save the bloated MIC budget is not a good thing. Blind deficit cutting is the rallying call of Teahadists and Ayn Rand followers and is immoral. Reasonable people don't want a hatchet taken to the fabric of society in order to enrich a load of Libertarian garbage.


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Response to freshwest (Reply #30)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 04:18 PM

34. I see it differently

Let me start with an overly simplistic generalization. Let us say there are only two types of representatives:

A) Those who honestly represent the people and whose motives are true.

B) Those who are in bed with the lobbyists (and their cash) representing all the special interests that are diametrically opposed to the interests of "the people"

Of course, the world is not so black and white, but allow me that premise for a moment.

The way things are today, all the leverage and incentives are with the people who work for special interest money. And even so, we have been able to achieve something of a standoff. Some people call this "gridlock", but I think it is equally valid to say that there are enough people fighting for the interests of "the people" that we have something that looks like an equilibrium.

Now granted, it is an equilibrium that is heavily slanted towards the richest and most powerful. They depend on this balance of power to maintain that equilibrium that favors them so much.

The elegance of Buffet's idea is that those with disproportionately large amounts of power (or those who abuse the many for the benefit of the few, if you will), have the most to lose if they were to be swept out of power. Therefore, they are the ones most likely to give up some of their advantages if that is the only alternative to being swept from power.

Another way to say the same thing is that if we were to sweep every entrenched Senator or Congressman from power simultaneously, it is more likely that we would a) reduce the role of money in the election process, and b) elect more progressive candidates. Part of what makes our system so diseased is the fact that these people who never seem to leave just gather up more money and more power every year. They didn't usually start in the Congress with all that power and money. The simple fact is that none of these people representing special interests will take the chance of being swept out of power, so they will have to come to the table.

Finally, remember that debilitating austerity isn't the only way to balance the budget. Indeed austerity doesn't see to balance the budget at all. Just as Europe how austerity is going. Ask Japan how austerity has gone since 1991. They used to be the second largest economy in the world.

There are several variables to a balanced budget:

- Income (taxes, fees, etc)
- Direct program costs (military budget, etc)
- Growth rate (please note that Buffet's idea states deficit as a %of GDP, so growth is an important factor in raising revenues and also in giving the Buffet fraction a larger denominator)
- Program savings (e.g. letting medicare negotiate drug prices)

If we tell our representatives that they must balance all of those factors in an equitable way or else they will all leave office, it is not obvious to me the compromise answer will be austerity.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #34)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 04:26 PM

35. Nothing you have said makes it obvious that it *won't* be austerity for the needy w/o power.

The primary voices wanting austerity are not into protecting anyone but the pockets of the wealthy.

The OP goes farther than your link, so not all of this has to do with what you cite.

Those pushing a false populism send these emails around are not honest or long-thinking enough to see who will benefit by burning the house down.

So we must part ways here, as I don't want to bump this thread again.

See you around.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #35)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 05:01 PM

36. A change in the status quou favors progressives

We know what we get if we remain on this path. We get the special interests buying up complete control,. They like austerity for the masses and riches for the few. That will not change.

So I don't see how this change could possibly make that worse, and it certainly has the possibility of pulling back from special interests.

Of course, that is why it would never pass the Congress. But it might have a shot at passage by way of a Constitutional Convention. And the nice thing about this one is that it is something most teabaggers could get behind as well, although I don't think they would fully anticipate the implications, which I believe would be in the direction of progressives.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:41 PM

11. public pressure to allow 18 year-olds to vote was because of vietnam and the draft.

 

if they're old enough to be drafted to fight and die- they're certainly old enough to have a say.

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Response to BlueMan Votes (Reply #11)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:31 PM

26. I remember walking to get petitions on that when I was a teen. I wouldn't get to vote for a while,

but it was something that needed to be done.

In those days, the war was everyone's business because of the draft. When it ended, the idea was that the end of the draft would prevent war. The forces became volunteer and people ignore the military budget or warfare because they don't have to take a stand anymore.

Many whose vote was obtained earlier didn't vote in 2010 as they felt free to be apolitical. During the Vietnam era people had a lot at risk, their lives without any say. Sometimes the things we do to improve things don't work out as planned.

But this year the 18 year old vote meant a lot to many. So it was worth it in the long run, and the Democratic Party has always been about extending rights, not taking them away. We have the GOP to perform that dubious function.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 12:44 PM

12. THIS IS A BS VIRAL EMAIL THAT HAS BEEN CIRCULATING FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS

Warren Buffet has no connection to this, there is NO SUCH proposed law or amendment, and claims about legislators' benefits are false or wildly distorted. Snopes and other factcheck sites have all debunked this.

If the OP is not self-deleted, it should be locked by a host or hidden by a jury.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:35 PM

28. And what if Congress achieves that 3% ceiling by cutting ALL social programs?

The way corporations make their year end quarter look better to stock holders by laying people off?

I wouldn't call that idea genius. And as someone else pointed out, an entire new congress and senate sounds like a disaster.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:37 PM

29. Great ideas.These bums are the real parasites of his county.More than 2/3's are millionaires already

They are bilking us and laughing all the way to the bank. And they are known as the "DO NOTHING" Congress. Let them prove themselves worthy. 2014 will be here before you know it. Get rid of the dead weight and let them fend for themselves in the country THEY'VE help to create like the rest of us.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 01:56 PM

32. I like the combining of the Congressional retirement fund with Social Security.

That would protect Social Security forever.

But I think it's stupid, and ignorant about the concern for the deficit. Dick Cheney, the Darth Vader of the RepubliCON party, actually had it right when he said deficit don't matter. Deficit hawks are silly.

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Response to Democrat 4 Ever (Original post)

Mon Nov 19, 2012, 06:26 PM

37. I think Warren Buffett is smarter than to propose a nonstarter like this.

This smells like it needs Snopes sprayed all over it.

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