The Musings of

Something full of magic, religion, bullsh*t.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

The other white meat

To the unenlighted, my general fiscal conservatism may be viewed as nothing more that deficit-hawk tendencies. The truth is, I'm much more reactionary than that. Sure, I'm not too thrilled about constantly running deficits, but I wouldn't be happy if the government was running in the black if it continues to spend on business it . . . well, has no business in. My mindset is a simple one, and one that I believe the Founders shared:
If it can be done by the private sector, let the private sector do it. If it can't be done by the private sector, leave it to the states. If it can't be done by the states, and it is necessary for the country's general administration (treaties, embassies, weights and measurements, currency, etc.) or survival (military), then, and only then, should the federal government get involved.
Of course, this is a simplistic sketch and is rather draconian as viewed by today's, shall we say, socialized standards. I really don't want to get into a point-by-point analysis of what this would actually mean for the country -- I spend an entire semester of Con Law fleshing it out in daily battles instigated by my professor, and I still don't think we got anywhere -- but suffice it to say that I think Congress has taken it's "power to lay and collect taxes ... to pay the debts and provide for the ... general welfare of the United States" beyond the dreams of the individuals who wrote, debated, and adopted those words.

That being said, it's always amused me to see just how far the federal government's spending power reaches. The good folks over at Citizens Against Goverment Waste are preparing to reissue their appropriately named "2005 Congressional Pig Book," which chronicles the how ridiculous our pork-loving politicians have become more interesting purchases of our esteemed leaders. Among recent year's gems:

- $50 million for an indoor rain forest in Iowa
- $102 million to study screwworms which were long ago eradicated from American soil
- $273,000 to combat goth culture in Missouri
- $2.2 million to renovate the North Pole (Lucky for Santa!)
- $50,000 for a tattoo removal program in California
- $1 million for ornamental fish research
I for one am impressed by the federal government's foresight in address the invading Goth hordes. The Western Roman Empire ignored the Goths and now the Romans are forced to drive Vespas on cobblestone streets, which has got to really smart.

But I kid. Looking at this list I can see that perhaps I've been a bit hasty about condemning most government spending. I mean, on occasion they do some good. With that in mind, can anyone tell me how to score some of that $50K for tattoo removal? I've got this "Rockin' with Dokken" tat on my back that I'm having second thoughts about.
Centinel 7:56 AM #


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