A big part of the problem with golden parachute retirement packages and overly generous salaries with huge benefits is that all the financial arrangements were made by the recipients and not by those who were ultimately going to have to pay them. If all government and public employee salaries were tied private sector benefits, at least they might be more in line with reality. When Congress decides it wants more money, they simply vote themselves higher paychecks. What the heck is that about? Maybe a stipend for actual work performed might be a good idea. Only if a politician is at the desk doing the job should he (she) be paid at all.