Wasteful spending

Reply Sun 19 Apr, 2009 06:15 pm
I Was watching Meet the Press this morning. Once again, as usual, they were discussing economics. It brought up a thought in my mind about wasteful spending. The wasteful spending specifically of tax payer dollars by the government. I checked out some info on the subject, and I cannot insure the credibility of the source, but, i read it anyway. Here were some , but not all, of the examples of wasteful government spending that I read:

.-The Federal Government cannot account for $24.5 billion spent in 2003
.-A White house review of jusr a sample of the Federal budget identified $90
billion spent on programs deemed that were either ineffective, marginally
adequate, or operating under a flawed purpose or design.
.-The Federal Government spends $23 billion annually on special interest
pork projects such as grants to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, or funds
to combat teenage "goth" culture in Blue springs. Mo. (I find that one to be suspect simply for its absurdity, but, continuing on,,
.-Washington spends tens of billions of dollars on failed and outdated
programs such as the rural utilities service, US Geological Survey, and the
and the Economic Development Association.
.-The Dept. Of housing and Urban Development's $3.3 billion in
overpayments in 2001 accounted for over 10% of the departments total
.-Heres another one I find to be suspect. Over one eighteen month period
Air force and Navy personel used government funded credit cards to
charge at least $102,400.00 for admission to entertainment events,
$48,250.00 for gambling, $69,300.00 for cruises, and $73,950.00for
exotic dance clubs and prostitues. Again, this one should be scrutinized.
.-The advanced technology program spends $150 million annually
subsidizing private business, and %40 of this goes to Fortune 500
.-The Defense Department wasted $100 million on unused flight tickets
and never bothered to collect refunds even though the tickets were
.-The Conservation Reserve Program pays farmers $2 billion annually to
"not" farm their land. (I do remember hearing that once.)
.-The Department of Agriculture spends $12 billion to $30 billion annually
on farm subsidies , the vast majority of which goes to "hobby farmers"
such as David Rockefeller, Ted Turner, Scottie Pippen and former Enron
CEO Ken Lay.
Again, I do not know how much of this is accurate. Just something I read.

If it is the case though, our government is guilty of very poor business practices. While we tend to lay all of the blame on corporate America for todays economic ills, maybe we are not addressing the wasteful spending of our government as well.

There seems to be an inclination of the masses or, the common folks, to enter into a new frugality of sorts. To spend less on new things and find alternative ways to provide the basic needs, and to be content on what they do have. Less inclined to buy a new vehicle or, a new home etc,etc,etc,. This new frugality, will eventually have a far reaching effect on our economy as a whole. Home builders, The automotive industry, grocery stores, etc, etc, etc. How about a new frugality in government? If this is, as I was always taught, a government by the people and for the people, how about a little collective responsibilty on the part of government to spend "our" money wisely? It is our money you know, in case anyone forgot. I have no problem with paying taxes, as long as the money is spent wisely. What are wise ways to spend tax payer dollars? I don't know. Maybe others have an opinion. Thanks for listening.
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Reply Sun 19 Apr, 2009 06:41 pm
You also forgot to include how much money the government wastes on no-bid contracts, which I am sure are difficult numbers to get a grasp on.

This one surprised me, but one of the best things for the government to fund are projects that plant trees to help the spatial distribution issues of canopy cover. Because trees are very beneficial in many ways to urban environments, they help just about everyone. But the poor and even middle class often do not have the funds to plant trees, much less care for them. Trees that are not properly care for do much property damage (often to property where they are not located) and weed trees cause other issues since these tend to grow on the edges of properties.

I also think that the government should help protect marginalized communities and individuals. But huge a centralized government and economy promote large percentages of people to suffer at the hands of a small percentage of people. There are many ways that the government could help these communities, but do not because they often do not have proper economic and political capital to be heard.

These two things have one thing in common--large bureaucracies are inefficient and cause way more problems than they solve. If the people of the United States wanted to spend their tax money more wisely, a much higher portion would go to local communities and states. The federal government wastes too much money on things like defense and bailing out industry. All those trillions of dollars that were handed over to the financial institutions could have been pumped back into the local economies, which would have had a much greater effect on the tanking economy. Who really needs large conglomerate banks anyway? My credit union does just fine and does not need funding to bail it out, because it sticks to sound business practices, is local, and does not waste money on high risk casino investments.
Reply Tue 21 Apr, 2009 10:45 pm
Note that after we were scared to get these packages passed to bail out mortgages , not a single toxic mortgage has been paid so far.
Reply Wed 22 Apr, 2009 05:07 am
Locally you could see the rot set in when the local bank manager was redundant.He knew his customers and the local business scene.He would never lend without scrutinising the viability of the request and the same went with the mortgage manager.
When i hear one little armoured vehicle costs a million pounds , why ? what could a school do with that amount of money?
Tax is an evil necessity but the waste by all governments is alarming.
Is it me but where is all this new money coming from, our politicians appear to be magicians....It cant be gold reserves! Who lends governments these ridiculous amounts of money or is it a mirage of figures on a spread sheets..
Reply Wed 22 Apr, 2009 05:35 am
What is particularily weird in the UK is that wasteful government spending is coupled with wasetful corporate spending and the two combined. And I'm not even talking about the bail out! The government, when setting up things like hospitals, schools and roads has a scheme called PFI (private funding intiative) The idea is that by contracting out to private companies the building and mainatance of public facilities will be better thanks to the introduction of efficent competive private companies. However what in fact happens is that the government pays them about 5 times what the publically funded cost of constructing would have been, and get this, not to build them for the government to use, but to remain under the companies ownership who will then lease it to the government for the next 10 years, after which the government has to pay them even more money to extend the lease. Worse still these companies have somehow managed to end up in debt, and being bailed out by the government. Unbelievibly the government is actually paying them to charge them money and giving them money to enable them to continue to do all of the above. And we're not talking a few tens of thousands of pounds, but millions, and even billions that end up, as far as I can tell, in the pockets of incredibly rich people. That is litreally all the worst things about publically and privatly funded projects combined into some kind of hideous financial leviathan.
Now that is wastful spending, you can forget your feeble examples.
Reply Wed 22 Apr, 2009 05:57 am
Why does simple logic go out the window with government economics.I get mad locally,we have European funding for stupid things the public does not need or want and simple inexpensive necessities remain unfulfilled..
I think ill start a party of common sense and bring all these anomalies to the public arena..
Reply Wed 22 Apr, 2009 11:01 am
Yes but as I hope my example highlighted, the private sector is just as bad.
Reply Wed 22 Apr, 2009 12:21 pm
avatar6v7 wrote:
Yes but as I hope my example highlighted, the private sector is just as bad.
Yes but greed can explain their driving force ,what drives government to such stupid logic?
Reply Thu 23 Apr, 2009 10:01 am
Becase they believe that greedy people are better at running things. Which they sometimes are if its for themselves- but inevtibly they take more.
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Reply Sun 3 May, 2009 03:33 pm
Theaetetus wrote:
Who really needs large conglomerate banks anyway?

Large conglomerate banks.
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Reply Fri 8 May, 2009 08:11 pm
Wasteful spending...

Download/listen to here and jump to minute 2.
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