I had a relative who had a good income but was always broke and crying the blues. At the same time, he always seemed to have money for cigarettes and booze, ordering pizza, paying for premium movie and sports channels on cable TV, and anything else he wanted.
That was enough to make me shudder, but when I learned that he wasn’t just living from payday to payday, he was actually living from payday loan to payday loan, I was appalled. He kept saying that he just couldn’t make ends meet and I tried to give him some advice on controlling his spending, but he didn’t want to hear it. Give up his cigarettes? They were only a couple of bucks a pack! Cancel his sports channels? They were only $15 a month! I tried to explain to him that those little numbers added up to a lot, but to no avail. He was going to do what he was going to do and damn the consequences.
We’ve got a lot of people just like him running our government.
I keep hearing about all of the money we’re spending on providing medical care for illegal aliens and educating their children. That’s a popular complaint and probably has some validity. But what about all of the other millions of tax dollars, yours and mine, that nobody seems to notice or care about?
Case in point – An Associated Press news story reports that lawmakers from both parties spent nearly half a billion dollars in taxpayer money in the past two years to build improved versions of the Army’s Abrams tank. This even though the Army has reported over and over that it doesn’t need or want the new tanks!
That’s right, while the Defense Department is looking for ways to trim its budget and still maintain standards of training, a couple of influential congressmen, Representative Jim Jordan and Senator Rob Portman, both Republicans from Ohio, are insisting on the Abrams tank project. Not because the tanks are crucial for our national defense, but because the tanks are made in Lima, Ohio.
Another recent news story by Reuters reveals that for more than a decade the Central Intelligence Agency has paid tens of millions of dollars in cash to Afghan President Hamid Karzai. The story says that this “ghost money” was delivered in cash to buy favor from Karzai’s administration.
Think about that for a minute. Every penny of taxes that you and everybody you know will ever pay in their lives wouldn’t make a day’s interest on the money being wasted just in these two examples. And this while senior citizens in America and the working poor cannot afford health care! How about we keep our money at home where it will do us some good and let all of those Third World countries hate us for free instead?
These are just two examples of the insanity running rampant in Washington on both sides of the aisle. How much more is going on that we don’t hear about? Yes, I know, compared to the trillions of dollars we owe, those numbers may seem like a drop in the bucket. But just like those cigarettes and cable TV channels, a million here, a million there, and it adds up pretty quickly.
Tags: Abrams tank, Associated Press, Central Intelligence Agency, cigarettes, controlling spending, Defense Department, government waster, HBO, medical care for illegal aliens, national debt, premium movie and sports channels on cable TV, wasting tax dollars