Kentucky Senator Rand Paul released his annual report on government waste, Tuesday, outlining the “truly outlandish” waste in the federal budget.
Paul released his report as part of his annual “Festivus” celebration — a reference to the satirical holiday event from the TV sitcom, Seinfeld.
The Kentucky Republican detailed $54,746,525,000 in waste in recent budget bills.
“Remember this the next time they tell you there’s ‘nothing to cut,” the Senator tweeted on Wednesday.
Paul wrote of wasteful health studies, including more than $36 million to study why stress makes hair turn gray, more than $1 million to find out whether people will eat ground-up bugs, and another $3 million spent on looking at edible cannabis use by San Franciscans.
There is much more, of course.
As to foreign spending, there is the $8.62 billion spent in Afghanistan on counter-narcotics campaigns, more than $37 million supposedly help the Philippines deal with truant youth, and more than $3 million to send Russians to American community colleges for a “gap year.”
Paul also noted the waste in the scientific community.
More than $1 million was wasted walking lizards on a treadmill, nearly $200,000 studying how people cooperate while playing e-sport video games, and another $2 million to invent headsets that monitor eating habits.
There was plenty of waste in the military to target, as well.
The military, for instance, repurposed $1 billion in coronavirus response funds for unrelated purchases, there was more than $ 715 million in lost equipment that was supposed to go to the Syrians fighting ISIS, and the $174 million in drones that were lost over Afghanistan.
Also, there was the wasted $4 million on spraying alcoholic rats with bobcat urine, more than $10 million spent on would-be coronavirus test tubes that turned up as used soda bottles, and nearly $6 million building three bicycle storage facilities at Washington, D.C. Metro stations.
In 2020, “Congress spent as never before, doing so ostensibly without a care,” Paul’s report exclaims. “Some of that is traceable to COVID-related spending, but a lot of it was not.”
— Sergio Gor (@SergioGor) December 23, 2020
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