WARNING: PORK ALERT !!
Apparently things like vice presidential entertainment, wild horse adoption and the future State Elections Commission of Puerto Rico are crucial items since Nancy told us ‘there’s nothing left to cut’ and the ‘cupboard is bare’. Here are just a few tidbits from the bill that, by the way, exceeded the cap by $45 billion.
Pg. 18: $54,000,000 For Government Employees To Combat Wood And Tree Pests: Under the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the bill provides $54 million in salaries “for tree and wood pests.” (For $54 million, I’ll do it by myself.)
Pg. 125: $36,000 For Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) Receptions. Part of the ATF’s funding includes $36,000 “for official reception and representation expenses.” (Those boys at ATF know how to party, eh?)
Pg. 137: $2,500,000 For Voter Education About Puerto Rico’s Future Political Status And Potential Statehood. “$2,500,000 is for objective, nonpartisan voter education about, and a plebiscite on, options that would resolve Puerto Rico’s future political status, which shall be provided to the State Elections Commission of Puerto Rico.” The funding will educate voters on a future vote to become a state. (Puerto Rico already held such a vote in 2012.)
Pg. 159: Up To $80,000,000 To Study Jupiter’s Europa Moon In The Year 2020. “Provided further, that $80,000,000 shall be for pre-formulation and/or formulation activities for a mission that meets the science goals outlined for the Jupiter Europa mission in the most recent planetary science decadal survey.” (The Europa mission isn’t even planned until 2020.)
Pg. 365: $4,000,000 For Aquatic Plant Control. Under funding for the Army Corps of Engineers’ investigations, $4 million of the $125 million given to the Corps is earmarked for the “Aquatic Plant Control Program.” (Don’t you just hate those out-of-control lily pads?)
Pg. 479: Up to $90,000 For The Vice President’s Entertainment Expenses. “For the care, operation, refurnishing, improvement, and to the extent not otherwise provided for, heating and lighting, including electric power and fixtures, of the official residence of the Vice President; the hire of passenger motor vehicles; and not to exceed $90,000 for official entertainment expenses of the Vice President, to be accounted for solely on his certificate.” (In other words, we have to fix Joe’s house after he demonstrated his shotgun skills to the Mrs.)
Pg. 720: $3,660,000 For Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation. The bill includes $3.6 million to fund “Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Fund.” (Birds are pretty good at migrating on their own. And wth is neotropical? Do we even have that?)
Pg. 790: $35,000,000 For The Removal Of Fish Passage Barriers: From funding for the Forest Services’ improvement and maintenance account, “$35,000,000 shall be designated for urgently needed road decommissioning, road and trail repair and maintenance and associated activities, and removal of fish passage barriers.” (I’m sure we all agree the fish need better roads.)
Pg. 799: Funding For The Adoption Of Wild Horses And Burros. “Funds appropriated to the Forest Service shall be available for expenditure or transfer to the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, for removal, preparation, and adoption of excess wild horses and burros from National Forest System lands, and for the performance of cadastral surveys to designate the boundaries of such lands.” (Cadastral surveys are used to define property lines for taxation purposes – it’s about time those wild horses paid their fair share. Notice there’s no dollar amount here -maybe they can borrow some from the fishies.)
Pg. 821: $146,021,000 For The National Endowment For The Arts. “For necessary expenses to carry out the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965, $146,021,000 shall be available for the support of projects and productions in the arts, including arts education and public outreach activities, through assistance to organizations and individuals pursuant to section 5 of the Act, for program support, and for administering the functions of the Act, to remain available until expended.” (This is a $7,637,782 increase over the $138 million appropriated in 2013, and really pegs my meter.)
And last (because I can’t stand any more), but not least, we have…
Pg. 906: $124,296,000 For The National Center For Complementary And Alternative Medicine. “For carrying out section 301 and title IV of the PHS Act with respect to complementary and alternative medicine, $124,296,000.” (According to the Chicago Tribune, this funding is spent on treatments such as acupuncture, energy healing, squirting brewed coffee into someone’s intestines as treatment for pancreatic cancer and massages for advanced cancer patients. The coffee enemas didn’t help, but the massages did.)
Our government gets more outrageous with every passing day. The fact that this so-called budget is bipartisan makes it even more disgusting. Being snarky about it is the only way to maintain any sanity when discussing the pure unadulterated waste of money.
Forget about learning Spanish – does anyone know how to speak Mandarin?