Back in February 2009, the U.S. Congress passed an $862 billion "economic stimulus" bill to help the struggling American economy recover from the horrible financial crisis of 2007 and 2008. Right now, federal agencies are spending this stimulus money at the rate of approximately 196 million dollars an hour, and they will continue to spend it in staggering amounts up until the September 30, 2010 deadline. Unfortunately, instead of being spent on useful projects that would revitalize U.S. industry and put American workers back to work, much of this money is being flushed directly down the toilet on some of the most wasteful projects imaginable. The truth is that nobody is better at wasting money than the U.S. government. In fact, some of the things that the U.S. government has been spending money on are absolutely mind blowing.
The following are just some of the examples of "stimulus waste" that we have seen over the last 16 months....
*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.
*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.
*Syracuse professor of psychology Michael Carey received $219,000 in federal stimulus money for a study that examines the sex patterns of college women.
*$1.15 million in stimulus funds was allocated for the installation of a new guard rail around the non-existent Optima Lake in Oklahoma.
*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.
*$100,000 in federal stimulus funds were used for a martini bar and a brazilian steakhouse.
*A dinner cruise company in Chicago got nearly $1 million in stimulus funds to combat terrorism.
*$233,000 in stimulus money went to the University of California at San Diego to study why Africans vote.
*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."
*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.
*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.
*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.
*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.
*Landon Cox, a Duke University assistant professor of computer science, was awarded $498,000 in stimulus money to study Facebook.
*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.
*Lastly, who could forget the $3.4 million "ecopassage" to help turtles cross a highway in Tallahassee, Florida?
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.
It is enough to make you want to pull your hair out. We were once the wealthiest, most prosperous nation on the planet, but we have recklessly squandered our great wealth. Over and over we kept voting for corrupt politicians who endlessly wasted our money on the most ridiculous things.
So now we will pay the price.
We are already being taxed brutally, but because of all the debt our "leaders" have gotten us into we are going to be taxed even more. We did not demand accountability from our government, and so now we get to face the consequences.
But no amount of taxes will ever be enough for this government. If we give them more money they just take that as a signal to get into even more debt. As a nation we are on a path that can only be described as financial insanity.
So is there any hope that the U.S. government will stop wasting so much money? Not with the current collection of Republicans and Democrats that currently inhabit Washington D.C.
The truth is that both parties have been wasting our money for decades. Many politicians will often talk about the need to "control spending", but when time comes to do it very few of them are ever willing to take action.
So until the American people decide to start sending a different kind of politician to Washington D.C. we are probably going to continue to see huge mountains of money being wasted.
Wake up America.