Posted by: Puma1 | February 3, 2009

$150 Million for Honeybee Insurance? Stimulus Full of Nonsense Says GOP

stim-billThe infamous “honeybee insurance” provision in the House Porkulus Bill drew the ire of its critics and gave an opening to the Republican party which suddenly rediscovered its aversion to spending, an aversion that was killed by — ironically — Republican idol Ronald “I Love Massive Deficits” Reagan.

Though the bill passed, its unpopularity weakened the President and the Democratic Congress.  Republicans and deficit hawk Democrats lost the vote, but won the argument.

Nonetheless, the battle against this horrendous spray of useless spending continues to the next battlefield: the United States Senate. Having learned nothing from the House embarrassment, Senate Democrats have padded the Porkulus bill with more outrageous falderol.

Republicans, having benefited from the Porkulus bill debacle, have smartly responded by distributing a list detailing the Senate bill’s “wasteful provisions”:

• $2 billion earmark to re-start FutureGen, a near-zero emissions coal power plant in Illinois that the Department of Energy defunded last year because it said the project was inefficient.

• A $246 million tax break for Hollywood movie producers to buy motion picture film.

• $650 million for the digital television converter box coupon program.

• $88 million for the Coast Guard to design a new polar icebreaker (arctic ship).

• $448 million for constructing the Department of Homeland Security headquarters.

• $248 million for furniture at the new Homeland Security headquarters.

• $600 million to buy hybrid vehicles for federal employees…

• $150 million for Smithsonian museum facilities.

• $1 billion for the 2010 Census, which has a projected cost overrun of $3 billion.

• $75 million for “smoking cessation activities.”

• $200 million for public computer centers at community colleges.

• $75 million for salaries of employees at the FBI.

• $25 million for tribal alcohol and substance abuse reduction…

• $88 million for renovating the headquarters of the Public Health Service.

• $412 million for CDC buildings and property.

• $500 million for building and repairing National Institutes of Health facilities in Bethesda, Maryland.

• $160 million for “paid volunteers” at the Corporation for National and Community Service.

• $5.5 million for “energy efficiency initiatives” at the Department of Veterans Affairs National Cemetery Administration…

• $75 million to construct a “security training” facility for State Department Security officers when they can be trained at existing facilities of other agencies.

• $110 million to the Farm Service Agency to upgrade computer systems.

Would it were that the Pelosi-Obama-Reid combo would stop trying to use taxpayer money to redecorate, and use it to, oh I don’t know, stimulate the economy and create jobs with targeted middle class cuts and focused, visionary infrastructure projects.

Obama pulled this stimulus bill out of his butt — and it smells like it!

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Responses

  1. National Ledger
    By Dick Morris
    Jun 11, 2009

    “Housing News is Bad News for Obama” (plan to rescue those facing mortgage foreclosure is a dismal failure) :

    http://www.nationalledger.com/artman/publish/article_272626473.shtml

  2. Honey bees are overrated. Save the 150 Million and we can all just eat potatoes and mushrooms and lots of vitamins.

    My local bee keeper is out of bees and out of business.

  3. Absolutely – it may be a load of fun to write about this in a largely uninformed manner, but, really, see both above. Much is made out of this honey bee business, and I KNOW some of these republicans know how serious the business is of pollination and the loss of our bees (our food depends on it) but they are banking on the general public out there not understanding its importance and siding with their obstinate opposition. The Republicans are stoking our vast furnace of ignorance in this country by making light of this serious issue, (and others like it above).

    • It’s those who THINK they are informed who are actually feeding “our vast furnace of ignorance in this country”. These people are a bigger problem for us than the Republicans are! Someone should explain to Melissa that while the honeybee problem (which is incredibly serious and touches some 30% of our food supply) has become a joke because IT’S IN THE ECONOMIC STIMULUS PACKAGE. No one would question it for a second if it was a seperate House or Senate measure with it’s own Committee and research. It’s become a black eye because some of the dopes in our own Party stuck it in the highly scrutinized Stimulus bill: and we will all suffer from THAT.

  4. I agree that most of this stuff you’ve listed is crap, but to put it in perspective, these extraneous items are less than 1% of the total bill.

    Here’s a pie chart showing a break down of the whole thing:
    http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/01/15/stimulus-pie-chart/

    That being said, I do think the “$600 million to buy hybrid vehicles for federal employees” is good for our flailing auto industry, and is a good kick start in trying to shift our fleet of cars to greener technologies.

    Cheers.

  5. This particular insurance thing may have been pork, but the honeybee problem is legitimate and serious.


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