Six Reasons Term Limits Are Stupid

1. We’ve always had term limits. They’re called elections, and incumbents have been known to lose them.

2. If somebody is doing a good job, getting rid of him is like saying, “I don’t want a doctor who’s treated this ailment, I want a brand-new doctor who’s never seen it before.”

3. They don’t make term-limited officials “do the right thing”; they give them reason to say, “Since I won’t be back, let the next guy deal with it.”

4. They’re supposed to get rid of professional politicians, but instead they enhance the power of lobbyists.

5. The way government works, the more seniority you have, the more likely you can help your constituents, who never want the government to help them until they need it.

6. Carolyn Goodman doesn’t drink big martinis.

And One Reason We Won’t Get Rid of Them: Term limits save us the trouble of making decisions for ourselves.

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In 2008, I was on the losing end of a gold trade—swindled, really. By my dad. I had just been laid off after the literary agent I worked for was poached, but was lucky enough to find a job and not have to file for unemployment only days later. In the interim between paychecks, however, I’d be broke. “Well, you’ve got those coins lying around,” he suggested.



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