Congress: Do As I Say, But Don’t Expect Me To

Want to see how far our political system has fallen since the bight days of promise in 1776? Check out this quote from Federalist No. 57, published on February 19, 1788, penned by James Madison:

“The House of Representatives … can make no law which will not have its full operation on themselves and their friends, as well as the great mass of society. This has always been deemed one of the strongest bonds by which human policy can connect the rulers and the people together. It creates between them that communion of interest, and sympathy of sentiments, of which few governments have furnished examples; but without which every government degenerates into tyranny.”

What happened to those “strongest bonds” that were supposed to connect the ruler to the ruled? It has disappeared as Congress constantly exempts itself from being forced to live under the rules it makes for the rest of us. A perfect example of this is the opulent healthcare enjoyed by members of Congress and their staffers, opulence that we all pay for and one that far outshines the sort of medical care that we lowly voters can get without great expense.

While these haughty Congressmen sit in judgment of what sort of healthcare the citizenry should be “allowed” to have, as deathcare is contemplated, rationing is envisioned, limits are set, and abortion on demand is quietly stuffed into the House bill despite the religious qualms of half the electorate, Congress itself enjoys an enviously extravagant healthcare plan while exempting itself from what they would force on the rest of us.

While Congress fashions plans to ration our care, they enjoy all sorts of generous choices at low costs to their personal pocketbook.

Among the advantages: a choice of 10 healthcare plans that provide access to a national network of doctors, as well as several HMOs that serve each member’s home state. By contrast, 85% of private companies offering health coverage provide their employees one type of plan — take it or leave it.

Lawmakers also get special treatment at Washington’s federal medical facilities and, for a few hundred dollars a month, access to their own pharmacy and doctors, nurses and medical technicians standing by in an office conveniently located between the House and Senate chambers.

Congress enjoys the Cadillac of healthcare plans kindly paid for by the taxpayers as the rest of us suffer. So much for making “no law which will not have its full operation on themselves and their friends.”

(Cross posted at

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