"Just how much federal waste, duplication and weird or unnecessary spending are your tax dollars funding?"
The federal government doled out 560,771 grants in fiscal year 2016, totaling $583 billion. On average, each grant exceeded $1 million.
Research shows pork-barrel spending is bipartisan, as the top 50 grant-receiving districts are represented by 27 democrats and 23 republicans. The top 10 congressional districts are evenly split: 5 democrats and 5 republicans.
Consider just a few examples of taxpayer abuse:
- Virtual Reality Platform to Teach Children in China How to Cross the Street – $183,750 from the Department of Health and Human Services funded a virtual reality platform in China to teach safe pedestrian techniques.
- New Condom Design with More Lubrication – $200,601 in taxpayer money funded a new condom design that lowers the chance of breakage and increases "satisfaction between partners."
- Cigar Taste Test – $114,375 funded a study to determine whether cigar flavor affected its addictiveness.
- Sex Ed for Prostitutes in California – $1.5 million funded "safer sex and needle" education for prostitutes in California even though prostitution is illegal in the state.
- Space Racers: An Animated Children’s Cartoon – $2.5 million in NASA funding supported the production of two seasons of a children’s cartoon series about galactic adventures.
These grants flowed to state governments ($505 billion); higher education institutions ($35 billion); for profit organizations including Fortune 100 companies ($2.5 billion); nonprofit organizations ($19.8 billion); and more.
Fortune 100 companies received $3.2 billion in federal grants between fiscal year 2014 and 2016. Boeing can’t argue it needed $774 million in federal grants while reporting nearly $95 billion in 2016 annual revenue.
How can we rein in this insanity? The people must bring the heat, so the politicians see the light on fiscal restraint.
It's Your Money! Join the Transparency Revolution!
Adam Andrzejewski (say: Angie-eff-ski)
CEO & Founder, OpenTheBooks.com
Thomas W. Smith
Deputy Director at Large
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