Here are the repairs the mechanic recommends. Here is how we can get started Fixing America:
Improve and Simplify Elections
The majority of people don’t get what they want today. Each party radicalizes away from the other – far from common sense. Most people don’t participate. No new ideas come from old politicians. ‘First Past the Post’ ballots ensure mediocrity.
- Replace ‘Winner Take All’ voting with:
Ranked Choice, Approval or Proportional Voting.
More candidates with good ideas could be elected, and multiple parties could exist.
This would solve a huge portion of fundamental issues, immediately.
2. Make Voting Simple:
Remove primaries (via using one of the above systems)
Make elections an annual event, nationwide for all issues.
All voting should be online, opening 5 days before election day.
It’s 2020, cars are driving themselves and we land rockets autonomously.
Yet, we us 1860s style voting methods still?
Reduce the Benefits of Being a Politician
Improving elections will help to get new voices, new faces and more representation from regular people into government. This is a good place to start.
Today, once someone gets into government, they gain money, power and influence. They can’t help but become corrupted. We need to fix that next.
- Reduce Political Pay
All politicians, including the president, should earn the median American wage.
Any benefits or perks match the average American worker.
Politicians make hundreds of thousands of dollars, not to mention the benefits and perks. What does it say when representing the public, is more profitable than being part of the public?
- Add a Time Limit
A politician should serve a maximum of two terms in any office, ever. The maximum time of service should be 8 years.
Today, being a politician has become so lucrative, some politicians stay in office for decades. It’s not as if these people are making magnificent changes, and bringing new innovations and ideas. They are profiting themselves.
- Reduce Long Term Benefits
Once a person has left elected office, they shall not earn more income based on having been in government. This would be a ban on politicians being lobbyists, becoming government contractors, or working on the board of public companies. One proposal is to tax any work that continues to impact the government, at 70%.. Ie, any books they sell, speeches they give, has a 70% tax
Being a politician should be about serving your country, and a sacrifice to do it – not a lifestyle that continues after office. Book deals, back office bribes and favors, simply for having been elected before? No, this profiting ends.
These three things would monumentally change our country and the nature of how our elected leaders, actually lead. We would move away from a stagnant two part system, to one run by people with new ideas, different backgrounds who WANT to make change. Not just people who want to profit off the public largess.
By removing the ability for politicians to earn huge sums, we remove the rational for someone to spend millions of dollars getting elected. It makes it no longer worth it. We want people being serving because they think it’s the right thing to do, not because they want the benefit for themselves.
Make Government Innovate and Serve:
- Eliminate monopolies
Any agency that serves citizens, can not have monopoly power. It’s not allowed in capitalism, so, why is it allowed in government? A monopoly ensures high prices and mediocrity. Public employee unions are forbidden again, for the same reason.
There is no reason why slow, bureaucratic agencies should make life miserable.
- Performance benchmarking
The performance of all agencies are benchmarked against private ones. Those performance standards increase 1% per year.
By demanding performance, we get better service, and innovation in government.
- Single point of contact for citizens to conduct business.
Want to start a business? You go through one office/website.
Want to remodel your house? A one stop shop handles all permits,
Want to adopt a child? One stop shop
The government should be focused on making our lives better and easier.
- Radical Transparency
All aspects of government are to be fully transparent. From the pay rates of all people, to all contracts. There is zero reason to hide any details from the taxpayers and citizens.
The more we see and know, the more we can watch government actions, and how they use the public’s money.
An Efficient Government
A more efficient government, needs less money, less bauerocrats, less office space, to run. The government can simplify itself, and save time, energy and money. If we run our government more efficiently, we don’t need as many taxes. People get better service, and also keep more of their income, in all forms.
1) Simplify Taxes:
Two taxes: Flat Income Tax (15%).
National Sales Tax (10%)
All other taxes are removed.
We want people to have jobs, so why do we tax those so heavily? We want people to own houses, so why do we tax those punitively? We want people to invest, so why do we tax it harshly? People should not be penalized for making their lives better, and it shouldn’t take huge accounting companies and software to figure any of this out.
2) The maximum size of the US Budget is a fixed % of GO.
i.e. the US Federal Budget is 10% of GO, which goes up and down annually
The bigger the economy grows, the government can grow in proportion.
This prevents the government from expanding faster than the country. Department budgets would also be fixed as a % proportion of total Budget. ie, the military budget can be 25% of US budget. Infrastructure would be 35%, etc.
Each agency as well is given a % of the total budget. Any new agency then must take from others, as the maximum budget size is capped.
These changes would immediately start the healing of our nation.
They are not easy medicine at first, but they would start the healing.
(v1.0, current as of Nov. 2020)
To read all 10 short stories that led to this: What Is Wrong With America.