5.c.26 – How much does the democratic structure cost?

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August 17, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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How much does the democratic structure cost?

When the democratic structure becomes applicable, it will be priceless; any costs to be paid to achieve would be well spent; it would be indeed an excellent investment, that will produce huge profit which only a true democracy can give. Anyway,  we can also do the following accounts: taking our Country as example, for a Parliament composed of 952 members in 2007 incurred the following costs for current expenditure (amounts in Euro):

EXPENSE    
 AMOUNT IN EURO  
     
FEES TO PARLIAMENTARIANS              245.963.000,00
GRANTS TO FORMER PARLIAMENTARY OFFICIAL PERSONNEL              209.950.000,00
EMPOYEES WAGES              482.510.000,00
GRANTS TO FORMER EMPLOYEES              167.505.000,00
SOCIALSECURITY CHARGES                 22.785.711,00
BUILDINGS LEASE                 44.215.000,00
ORDINARY MAINTENANCE                 18.999.000,00
CLEANING SERVICES                 12.305.000,00
UTILITIES (WATER, LIGHT, GAS)                   4.620.000,00
UTILITIES (TELEPHONE)                   3.080.000,00
POSTAGE                   1.000.000,00
CONSUMPTION MATERIAL                   8.967.500,00
PRINT OF PARLIAMENTARY ACTS                   8.870.000,00
OTHER PRINTING EXPENSES                   1.453.000,00
TRANSPORT COSTS                20.296.000,00
SERVICES OF NON EMPLOYED PERSONNEL                44.772.000,00
PROFESSIONAL UPDATES                   1.780.000,00
STUDIES AND RESEARCH                   3.071.000,00
OTHER STUDIES                      600.000,00
INSURANCES                   6.114.000,00
EXTERNAL INFORMATION                15.068.000,00
COMPUTER SERVICES                  8.224.000,00
CATERING                  2.779.000,00
GOODS, SERVICES AND OTHER COSTS               60.095.000,00
CONSULTATIONS                      100.000,00
   
CONTRIBUTIONS TO PARLIAMENTARY GROUPS                73.730.000,00
CONTRIBUTIONS TO INTERNATIONAL BODIES                       510.000,00
SCHOLARSHIPS                      255.000,00
MISCELLANEOUS CONTRIBUTIONS                  2.696.000,00
BALLOTS VERIFICATION COSTS                  1.060.000,00
COMMITTEE FOR CRIME INQUIRY                      300.000,00
COMMITTEE FOR WASTE INQUIRY                         75.000,00
COMMITTE FOR HEALTH INQUIRY                         40.000,00
OTHER INQUIRY COMMITTEES                  1.200.000,00
COMMITTEES, BOARDS AND COUNCILS                  2.670.000,00
BICAMERAL COMMITTEES                      745.000,00
RADIO AND CCTV SURVEILLANCEI                      285.000,00
PROSECUTION PROCEEDINGS                           5.000,00
INTERNATIONAL ACTIVITIES                  4.283.000,00
CEREMONIAL COSTS                  4.400.000,00
TRANSACTIONS                      900.000,00
SAFETY AT WORKPLACE                      920.000,00
TAXES AND CHARGES               60.385.000,00
REFUND OF AMOUNTS                        80.000,00
UNFORESEEN COSTS               19.964.289,00
CAPITAL EXPENDITURE               48.955.000,00
   
TOTAL AMOUNT           1.618.580.500,00          

From the above budgets of Parliament also appears the capital expenditure (i.e. expenditure that do not expire their utility in the year in which they were incurred, such as electrical installations, furniture, etc..). For the year 2007 these expenses amounted to Euro 48,955,000.00, but according to correct accountancy  principles, precisely because they relate to utility assets having pluriennial utility, they should be attributed only in part; for example, where it is estimated that the equipment can be used for five years, the corresponding expenditure should be charged to 20% for each year. Why this fundamental accounting technique, called depreciation, is not applied in the budget of the Parliament? Because for some unknown physical law, those that are normally durable goods inside Parliament wear excessively and do not last long, so much so that every year it is spent an amount similar to that of the previous year. These costs then, although known as “capital account”, should actually be regarded as current expenditure.
Even without wanting to economize on these costs (but on the 1,290,000.00 Euros spent a year for the service clothes maybe something could be done), we should remember that in our concentric model the Legislators are much less than the current 952 MPs and then, by comparing this total to 40 members of the Internal Legislative Center, you get a saving of Euro 1,550,572,915.00. If we add to this an amount of 200,819,044.00 Euros, which was allocated to political parties as reimbursement of electoral expenses, we obtain a total savings amounting to Euro 1,751,391,960.00.
By using this sum to pay the representatives of the institutional rings, we might get the following breakdown

Level  Number        Monthly Fees         Annual Fees
                      of       persons           per capita             per ring
Teams of the fifth ring (4 members)

         112.208

                   850,00   1.144.521.600,00
Teams of the sixth ring (6 members)

              16.830

               2.000,00      403.920.000,00
Teams of the seventh ring (10 members)

            2.800

               5.000,00      168.000.000,00
External Legislators

               280

             10.000,00         33.600.000,00
       
TOTAL ANNUAL EXPENDITURE        1.750.041.600,00

 This is just an accounting exercise, but it shows that without adding a euro to what is already currently spent, the democratic structure would be financially sustainable.
Finally, it is to be noted that in a democratic structure, no more taxes should be paid, but associative dues and the difference is not only lexical but also substantial: tax imposition (it is no coincidence that it is so called) are tributes imposed from above to subjects, the associative dues are shared among peers to support the expenses of common interest. It will have no more importance to the extent of the contribution, but satisfaction subsequent to obtaining the public services; in private, we all bore some expense exceeding the average for a given asset (a pair of shoes, a cell phone, a car) as we strongly desired it and then, with satisfaction, we exclaimed, it is well spent money! With the democratic structure the same thing can be realized, because once again  we are those who decide how much to spend and on what.

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