The first 50 budget items that should be cut in the sequester



Perhaps you’ve heard President Obama going on about the “deep and painful cuts” coming with the sequester or something about the sky falling. Democrats scare mongerers have been working overtime, telling the American people that the sequester will force cuts in everything from air traffic controllers to the Washington Monument’s maintenance

This is all nonsense, of course, because there are no actual cuts.  Even with the sequester, we will spend more money than we do this year.  In the race over our fiscal cliff, the sequester is merely slowing our rate of acceleration.

But, let’s imagine for a moment that something was ACTUALLY going to be cut. Here’s a list to help the folks in Washington get started. The sequester is supposed to find deficit cuts over a 10 year period.  This list comes only from the pork and wasteful spending that’s occurred since Obama took office. 

  1. $2,908,000 for shrimp aquaculture research
  2. $1,454,000 for mosquito trapping research
  3. $4,841,000 for wood utilization research
  4. $2,573,000 for potato research
  5. $775,000 for “Pickle Science and Technology”
  6. $500,000 for helicopter logging
  7. $600,000 for a “gurgling toad sculpture” in DoD building
  8. $8.3 million for golf course renovation in Louisiana
  9. $1.4 million for decorative rocks in Nevada
  10. $500,000 for food at Justice Department banquets
  11. $57.5 million to subsidize the Chevy Volt
  12. $623 million for the National Endowment for the arts
  13. $6 billion to turn federal buildings into “green” buildings.
  14. $200 million for the lease of alternative energy vehicles for use on military installations.
  15. $650 million for the digital television converter box coupon program.
  16. $600 million to buy hybrid vehicles for federal employees.
  17. $75 million for “smoking cessation activities.”
  18. $18 million to rebuild website
  19. $461 million for “salmon restoration”
  20. $480 million for a “redundant” F-35 engine
  21.  $1.8 million for pig odor and manure management
  22. $2.1 million for the Center for Grape Genetics in New York
  23. $17 million to promote social advances…in Ireland
  24. $700,000 for a bike trail in Minnesota
  25. $300,000 for a river walk in Columbus
  26. $900,000 for beach promenade in Pascagoula
  27. $20 million for World War II museum
  28. $1.2 million for museum of infectious diseases
  29. $615,000 to digitize Grateful Dead memorabilia 
  30. $3.4 million for fish hatcheries
  31. $66 billion for government contractors to sit around and do nothing
  32. $5.96 billion in Amtrak subsidies
  33. $10 billion to fund bankrupt green energy businesses 
  34. $11 million to build a bridge at the Microsoft headquarters
  35. $173,000 to study asparagus in Washington State
  36. $60 million for climate change research in foreign countries
  37. $500,000 for television ads on MSNBC
  38. $5 million to erect roadsigns promoting Obama’s stimulus law
  39. $21 million to provide broadband internet to 7 homes in Montana 
  40. $58 million for forest restoration on private land
  41. $98 million for a polar ice breaker
  42. $1 million for zoos to place poetry plaques on their exhibits 
  43. $1.58 billion for wind farms build overseas
  44. $2 million for “promotion of astronomy” in Hawaii
  45. $150 million for fisheries (in the Hurricane Sandy Bill alone)
  46. $1 million to control “Mormon crickets” in Utah
  47. $1.2 million for cormorant bird control in Michigan
  48. $11 million to buy “business attire” for job seekers
  49. $750,000 for a soccer field at Guantanamo Bay
  50. $15 million on Internal Revenue Service public relations efforts

It took me less than an hour to find $22,645,700,000*.  I’m no budget pro.  If I can find $22.6 billion in about 40 minutes, it shouldn’t be that hard to find enough things to cut for the sequester. They have 10 years of spending to work with. 

If you hear a politician talking about airplanes falling out of the sky and bridges crumbling, just remember two things: 1) There are no real budget cuts. It’s all being trimmed from the increase in spending over 10 years.  2) There are PLENTY of things to cut before we even begin to touch essentials. 

UPDATE*: Due to liberal complaints that my pork list was inaccurate, I have updated with source links on every item.  Any items that I could not definitively substantiate have been replaced with bigger, porkier, and more outrageous spending! The new price tag is $93,211,989,000! That’s 412% higher than the original post.

Apparently, our liberal friends just don’t get the point. This post is not as much about identifying Obama’s pork projects as it is about the ridiculousness of Obama’s sequestration scare tactics. It’s painfully easy to find wasteful spending in Washington.  For crying out loud, we could pay for the sequester many times over simply by repealing Obamacare. 

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