Wasteful and wanting?

We have all been told that the government wastes our tax dollars with irresponsible spending, right? I mean, no matter which wing of the political eagle you tend to side with (if for some reason you still choose to side with one over the other) there are things in the federal budget you feel passionately about and you deem to be wasteful and you think the funds could be better “invested” elsewhere.

Well, my educated friends, I can promise you there are things our government has spent money on, I mean real money on, which no matter which wing your feather rests on you will be shocked and appalled to find out about.

For example:

1) In 2012 $325,000 was spent on a robotic squirrel named “RoboSquirrel.” This National Science Foundation grant was used to create a realistic-looking robotic squirrel for the purpose of studying how a rattlesnake would react to it.

2) As part of a four-year, $27 million plan by the U.S. Agency for International Development to improve the economic competitiveness of Morocco involved training Moroccans to design and make pottery to sell, both locally and in international markets, Coburn’s report says.

But the translator hired was not fluent in English, and some of the materials used in the sessions were not regularly available in Morocco. Oops.

3) Sergeant’s Pet Care Products, a company with $140 million in revenue, received a Community Development Block Grant ($505,000) from the Department of Housing and Urban Development for capital improvements, with which the company wanted to buy machinery to make pet toothpaste and shampoo.

4) According to the Daily Treasury Statementand first reported by CNS News, the administration dished out $445 million to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) on the first day of the government spending “slimdown,” which means funds for the likes of PBS Newshour, NPR and “Sesame Street” are being spent before cancer research.

A high ranking official for PBS has gone on the record dating that PBS would exist fine without any government grants, so why are they still taking them? Remember Mitt Romney’s ridicule for saying her would “stop funding Big Bird”? $445 million would help out quite a few people who “can’t afford insurance” wouldn’t it?

Obviously there are lot of examples of wasteful spending by the government. After all, that’s what the government does.

But when your healthcare bill goes up by over $600 a month so that they can “afford” to put people with existing conditions on a plan (again, a very good thing that I agree with just not the way it is being done), and you find out Big Bird got $445 million and Robosquirrel got $325,000, at some point don’t you stop to think “you know, if they had instead put those same funds towards the funding of plans for people with existing conditions, maybe It wouldn’t have been necessary to take from my family the $600 a month that I was hoping to try to save up to put my child in a private school to ensure they have a bright future”.

“If it doesn’t make sense, then you probably shouldn’t subsidize it with dollars”- Vox Populi Clarus


1) http://blog.heritage.org/2012/10/16/top-10-examples-of-wasteful-federal-spending-in-2012/

2) http://money.msn.com/investing/12-examples-of-government-waste

4) http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2013/10/08/government-gives-445-million-to-corporation-for-public-broadcasting-on-first/

If you would like to read more about this, check out these links:




Investing in bad science.(wasteful government spending and research funding)(Essay): An article from: Policy Review

The bottom line is the government does not spend money on anything without having first taken the money from something, or usually someone else. When our government is spending money without logic on “investments” which aren’t of the utmost importance for the nation, then the money is being misappropriated. There needs to be more accountability (and preferably more public control) of the federal spending. Imagine having the ability to vote, even if it is just once or twice a year, to fund or de-fund programs we the people find to be wasteful. This is the drawback of having a republic instead of a democracy.

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