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Sen. Flake Releases Blockbuster Wastebook

by Nan Swift / /

In a world where $115,000 for puppet shows is a rounding error, one Senator has had enough.

This December, from the office that brought you the “Egregious Earmark of the Week” and “Jurassic Pork,” comes a new saga of waste and fiscal irresponsibility: “Wastebook – the Farce Awakens.”

You’ll laugh ($1.2 million for life-sized Pac Man!), you’ll cry (nearly $40 million a month in improper rent payments!), you’ll wonder how Washington keeps getting away with it.

This latest report from Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ), available here, details 100 cases of wasteful spending totaling more than $100 billion in fiscal year or calendar year 2015, ALONE. Each is a shameful example of distressingly misallocated resources that should appall already overtaxed Americans.

For example, the $100 million in grants for blender pumps – a give-away from the Department of Agriculture to corn ethanol producers – is an especially aggravating instance of waste and a good reminder about just how difficult it can be to address this ongoing issue.  Congress has repeatedly limited funds for blender pumps, with support from both sides of the aisle, and the 2014 Farm Bill specifically excluded blender pumps from qualifying for funding under programs used to support the activity in the past.

The Wastebook is approved for all audiences, but specifically recommended for in-the-know taxpayers.