The Bankrupting America website has a fun new man-on-the-street video. The participants are asked if pork-barrel spending in the Obama stimulus package is real or fake. As ludicrous as so much of the stimulus spending is, it's very hard to tell real spending from fake spending. Let's play - Real Or Fake ?:
Sure, some radical wingnut conservatives will undoubtedly object to $2.6 million taxpayer dollars being spent to train Chinese prostitutes to drink responsibly, but that's because they're racists. All reasonable and compassionate people know that drunken Chinese prostitutes contribute to the problem of, um,.....drunken Chinese prostitution. I didn't know that was a problem requiring a massive influx of taxpayer cash, but then again, I didn't go to Harvard.
I bet PETA loves that new underground walkway for turtles, though I do wonder how the tutrles will know to use it. Maybe one of those cool American Recovery And Reinvestment Act signs with the Obama logo will point the way. I assume the sign will be written in both English and Spanish, in order to accomodate Latino turtles. And there darn well better be a ramp for disabled turtles.
Bankrupting America also has a state-by-state breakdown of how the stimulus package is working. Here's the data for Ohio:
As part of a nationwide “recovery summer” tour, President Obama’s Administration will hold events throughout the country to discuss the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (aka the “stimulus”) and Washington’s plan for the road ahead. Below are some facts
to consider about Ohio:
Ohio’s share of the $862-billion “stimulus” bill received: $2,486,051,071
(=2.9% of the $85.6 billion that has been received by states).
Ohio’s share of the population = 3.8%
Ohio’s unemployment rate was 9.1% when the “stimulus” was enacted in February 2009; today it is 10.5%.
Ohio’s 10.5% unemployment rate is higher than the national average of 9.5%.
Ohio lost 131,500 jobs between February 2009 when the “stimulus” was enacted and June 2010.
For FY2011, Ohio is on track to overspend by $3 billion. (Last updated: 7/15/2010)
Ohio’s number of foreclosed homes was 11,321 when the “stimulus” was enacted; today that number has fallen to 10,639.
Questionable “stimulus” spending:
- $34 million will be going to Ohio’s John Weld Peck Federal Building in Cincinnati, which is only 46 years old, for a “window makeover.”
No word yet on whether the John Weld Peck Federal Building will house Chinese prostitutes, turtles, or both.
Here are a few more examples of stimulus waste:
*Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida used $15,551 in stimulus money to pay two researchers to study how alcohol affects a mouse’s motor functions. [ Oh, great. Next we'll have to train mice how to drink responsibly].
*The U.S. government handed over a staggering $54 million in “stimulus cash” to Connecticut’s politically-connected Mohegan Indian tribe, which runs one of the highest grossing casinos in the country. [Too bad they didn't teach Chinese prostitutes to gamble responsibly]
*Syracuse professor of psychology Michael Carey received $219,000 in federal stimulus money for a study that examines the sex patterns of college women. [Newsflash - women want sex more when they drink irresponsibly]
*$1.15 million in stimulus funds was allocated for the installation of a new guard rail around the non-existent Optima Lake in Oklahoma. [Maybe we'll put a lake there in Stimulus II]
*Researchers at the State University of New York at Buffalo received $389,000 to pay 100 residents of Buffalo $45 each to record how much malt liquor they drink and how much pot they smoke each day. Instead of spending nearly $400,000, the U.S. government could have achieved the same goal by having a couple of scientists join a fraternity. [Is it just me, or is our government obsessed with drinking ?]
*$100,000 in federal stimulus funds were used for a martini bar and a brazilian steakhouse. [See ? Told you so]
*A dinner cruise company in Chicago got nearly $1 million in stimulus funds to combat terrorism. [Al Qaeda's new 'Dinner And A Detonator' plot is thwarted]
*$233,000 in stimulus money went to the University of California at San Diego to study why Africans vote. [um, is it because THEY CAN ? I thought we settled this issue long ago]
*The Cactus Bug Project at the University Of Florida was allocated $325,394 in stimulus funds to study the mating decisions of cactus bugs. According to the project proposal, one of the questions that will be answered by the study is this: ”Whether males with large weapons are more or less attractive to females.” [I'm not going to touch this one]
*One Denver developer received $13 million in tax credits to construct a senior housing complex despite that fact that the same developer is being sued as a slumlord for running rodent-infested apartment buildings in the city of San Francisco. [I was wondering what happened to Tony Rezko]
*Sheltering Arms Senior Services was awarded a contract worth $22.3 million in stimulus money to weatherize homes for poor families in Houston, Texas - but a new report from Texas Watchdog says that the weatherization work was performed so badly that 33 of the 53 homes will need to be completely redone. [yes, but 20 of them DON'T have to be redone, so there. Plus, these are good union jobs being created, and recreated. This must be the doubling effect I hear so much about]
*A liberal theater in Minnesota named ”In the Heart of the Beast” (in reference to a well known quote by communist radical Che Guevara) received $100,000 for socially conscious puppet shows. [there's nothing worse than a socially unconscious puppet]
*California’s inspector general found that $1 million in stimulus funds for a program to give summer jobs to young people was improperly used for overhead expenses such as rent and utility bills. [but the rent and utility bill payments created or saved 100,000 jobs !!!]
*Landon Cox, a Duke University assistant professor of computer science, was awarded $498,000 in stimulus money to study Facebook. [hasn't this professor heard of google ? Facebook isn't exactly a secret]
*The town of Union, New York is being urged to spend $578,000 in stimulus money that it did not request for a homelessness problem that it claims it does not have. [this sounds like a pre-emptive move to counterract the longer term effects of Obama's policies to me]
Yes, the U.S. government sure knows how to waste money.
And the truth is that there is simply no way that the U.S. government would have been able to accumulate a debt of over $13 trillion dollars (and growing exponentially) without being incredibly skilled at wasting money.
In fact, the Pentagon says that there are literally trillions of dollars that it cannot account for.
Now how in the world do you lose track of trillions of dollars?
That takes some major league incompetence.
No organization other than the federal government could lose track of a trillion dollars. Yeah, these are the people we want running health care. NOT.
Change We Can Believe In.
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