Do you miss the late Senator William Proxmire and his yearly “Golden Fleece Awards”?
Well, if wasteful spending is something you just can’t get enough of, then it’s high time to turn to Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. His report on the “Worst Waste of 2008” came out in early December, and it’s quite a read.
Just skimming the report can keep you fuming for weeks. Here it is, a new year, and I’m still fuming. Over what? Well . . .
- $3.2 million on a blimp the Pentagon does not want.
- $300,000 on specialty potatoes for frou-frou restaurants.
- $2.4 million for a retractable shade canopy at a park in West Virginia.
But it’s not as if you cannot mount a defense for some of this. It’s not as if Congress isn’t thinking ahead. Congress has already allocated $24.6 million to the National Park Service for the institution’s centennial, and the centennial is eight years away!
Well, I didn’t say you could mount a good defense.
Americans already know that Congress lacks common sense. But what we need to learn, Coburn says, is that “[u]ntil Congress abandons the short-term parochialism that gives us LobsterCams and inflatable alligators, we will never get a handle on the major economic challenges facing this country.”
Coburn’s report is gold. It proves that, yes, we’ve been fleeced.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.