Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Let's Stimulate the Government

Quick fact check about Porkulus and the un “ear marks.”

For example, the latest version contains $2 billion for a clean-coal power plant with specifications matching one in Mattoon, Ill., $10 million for urban canals, $2 billion for manufacturing advanced batteries for hybrid cars, and $255 million for a polar icebreaker and other "priority procurements" by the Coast Guard.

from the Wall Street Journal, displays a lot about how the stimulus is being earmarked for federal programs and buildings.

Title VI, Financial Services and General Government, says that
"not less than $6,000,000,000 shall be used for construction, repair, and
alteration of Federal buildings." There's enough money there to name a building
after every Member of Congress.

The Bureau of Land Management gets $325,000,000 to spend fixing federal
land, including "trail repair" and "remediation of abandoned mines or well
sites," no doubt left over from the 19th-century land rush.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are getting $462,000,000 for
"equipment, construction, and renovation of facilities, including necessary
repairs and improvements to leased laboratories."

The National Institute of Standards gets $357,000,000 for the "construction
of research facilities." The Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration gets
$427,000,000 for that. The country is in an economic meltdown and the federal
government is redecorating.

The FBI gets $75,000,000 for "salaries and expenses." Inside the
$6,200,000,000 Weatherization Assistance Program one finds "expenses" of
$500,000,000. How many bureaucrats does it take to "expense" a half-billion

The current, Senate-amended version now lists "an additional amount to be
deposited in the Federal Buildings Fund, $9,048,000,000." Of this, "not less
than $6,000,000,000 shall be available for measures necessary to convert GSA
facilities to High-Performance Green Buildings." High performance?

Maybe I'm out of the loop in this Green Energy stuff. I understand that we want to make buildings put off less CO2 and be more energy effecient. But the last time I checked, there is no such thing as a 100% effecient machine - or building for that matter.

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