I've got an amendment to propose. It'd never get through Congress -- consider it a thought-experiment.
It's simple: if the Feds give you money, from a handout to a paycheck to a bailout, you can't vote. Yep, everybody from the Boards of Directors and CEOs of bailed-out banks right down to the most inoffensive Welfare recipient and everyone getting a Social Security check: no franchise for you! Not Solyndra's principals, not soldiers nor sailors nor Congressmen. They are getting paid tax money and they can darned well sit down, shut up and let the people who are having to pay the piper call the tune.
An entitlement class will always vote their own interests; and it's in their interest, in the interest of everyone from shady bankers dumping their losses on the public to the sweet little AARP member who bakes cookies for the postman, to expand their take of free money from the government -- except it's not free and it doesn't come from the government: it comes from you.
Time we put a stop to it -- if we can. There's already more than one person getting a handout for every two working; add in the number of individuals (and Party members) working at "public sector" jobs and it's a hell of a voting bloc.
I'd love to at least see it put forward in Congress, if only to snicker at the howls of outrage. "Sure, the house is burning down," they'll whine, "but it couldn't possibly burn all the way down!"
Wanna bet? Oh, wait, that's right, they already did. With my money. And yours, too.
Update II: The sticking point for a lot of commenters is denying the franchise to people who actually work for the government, as opposed to recipients of transfer payments. Indeed, it does seem unfair, and I'm not suggesting the postman who walks dozens of miles every day lugging a mailbag or combat troops are in any way freeloaders. But the problem is, their votes can be bribed with tax money. H. L. Mencken wrote, "Every election is a sort of advance auction of stolen goods." Figure out how to prevent that and you've solved the problem. Have I? I dunno.
Update: Yes, I propose if you, personally, accept money from the Feds, you hadn't ought to be voting. So that would include the clever lads with their hands out, running failing businesses "too big to fail," and yes, your dear old Aunt who gets Social Security checks, too. What? You object on account of she paid into the system? Tough. When she was paying in, she had a vote. If she wants one now, she can stop accepting checks; as long as she is taking them, her interest is compromised. It would also include the military. Oh, the horror and outrage in comments! --But dear readers, professional serving military used to have a tradition of not voting; they held it to be inappropriate. And it still should be, IMO; see above in re "compromised interests."
Somehow, people still act like we're gonna get out of this without tears. Guess again, and probably a lot worse than G. I Joe missing an absentee ballot or Granny dining on kibble. It's not like my modest proposal is going to happen -- and since it won't, it's not like the Federal "house" won't burn all the way down to scorched earth, at the hands of the men and women you let get voted in. But hey, bread and circuses 'til it falls. And stirring music, too.
T. R. MCELROY'S STREAMLINED TELEGRAPH KEYS
2 months ago