More of Your Tax Dollars Down the Black Hole
The Washington Examiner highlights examples today from Senator Tom Coburn's latest report on government waste. According to the Mark Tapscott, the Examiner's Executive editor:
"It likely will be decades before an American astronaut sets foot on Mars, but NASA officials are spending almost $1 million a year researching the best food for the Red Planet's first visitors from Earth.
"So far, scientists at Cornell University and the University of Hawaii have used the NASA funds to create recipes for Martian pizza and about 100 other dishes to be consumed on a mission that likely won't happen before the year 2030, according to Sen. Tom Coburn, R-OK.
"You don't need to be a rocket scientist to realize the millions of dollars being spent to taste test Martian meals that may never be served is lost in a black hole," an unimpressed Coburn said.
"The Martian culinary research is conducted under NASA's Advanced Food Technology Project, which was singled out in the 2012 edition of Coburn's annual "Wastebook" chronicle of the 100 worst examples of wasteful and unnecessary federal spending he and his staff uncovered in the past year.
"Washington spent much of the year deadlocked over whether to cut spending or increase taxes to address our fiscal crisis, all the while, allowing or even supporting these questionable projects," Coburn said."
Here's the real problem according to yesterday's press release from Senator Coburn's office:
“The problem in Washington is politicians are very specific about what we should fund but not specific about what we should cut. As a result, we are chasing robotic squirrels and countless other low-priority projects over a fiscal cliff,” said Dr. Coburn."
Here are just three examples of government waste from the press release, which says the oversight report, "Wastebook 2012," "highlights more than $18 billion in . . . some of the most egregious ways your taxpayer dollars were wasted in 2012."
- Corporate welfare for the world’s largest snack food producer, PepsiCo Inc. ($1.3 million)
- Government-funded study on how golfers might benefit from using their imagination, envisioning the hole is bigger than it actually is ($350,000)
- “Prom Week,” a video game that allows taxpayers to relive prom night ($516,000)
If there is a Member of Congress more concerned about American taxpayers than Senator Coburn, its hard to think of who that would be. Thank you, Senator Tom Coburn!
UPDATE (10/16/12): The Daily Caller makes the following point about Senator Coburn's "Wastebook 2012" report:
"In his report, the senator singles out the current Congress as the “biggest waste of taxpayer money” for its potentially historic lack of productivity. Some committees rarely hold hearings, and Congress has passed just 61 bills to date. Twenty senators, Coburn notes, have yet to even introduce an amendment — all while allowing wasteful spending to continue unabated."