Politicians in many countries are being paid an income far higher than the median wage of their country. For example, an American congressman can have a salary of $174,000, far higher than the median wage of $51,939, and similar disparities exist for other countries. This has created out-of-touch politicians who do not cater to the majority of citizens. Side proposition's proposal aims to rectify this problem by paying all elected politicians the median wage in their country.
In this debate, "this house" shall be western liberal democracies. A median wage is calculated using its standard mathematical definition--by lining up all wages from lowest to highest, and then taking the wage in the middle. Politicians such as the head of state, congressmen, and members of parliament shall be subject to this rule.
Argument 1: The proposal makes politicians care more for the middle class
The middle class makes up a large proportion of the population, and having a thriving middle class boosts the entire economy because the middle class spends more of what they earn than the top 1%. This proposal provides an incentive for politicians to create proposals that are beneficial under utilitarianism because they benefit the middle class.
Some policies are harmful to the middle class. If politicians earn a middle-class income, they would have to deal with the effects of these harmful policies, and therefore would have an incentive to reduce these problems. For example, right now, there exist regressive taxes, such as sales tax, that affect middle class and poor people disproportionately. If politicians become middle class citizens, then they would have both the incentive and the power to fix these unfair systems.
This proposal also provides an incentive for politicians to maintain good economic policies. Under the status quo, politicians get paid larger paychecks than the average person regardless of how well the economy is doing. Under the new policy, politicians' pay check sizes would be affected if too many people become poor or unemployed. If a politician makes an irresponsible economic decision, such as printing money to pay for debts, they would be affected almost as much as the average person. Thus, they would have an incentive to pass beneficial policies to increase the median wage, which would increase standards of living across the country.
Argument 2: Meritocracy
People should be paid based on merit. The median wage is a good measurement of how good the government is because in order to raise the median wage, the government must maintain the economy's stability, ensure that value is produced in the economy, and keep its citizens well-educated, all three of which are desired by the citizens. Thus, this proposal is consistent with the principle of meritocracy.
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