Friday, April 07, 2006

Pig Book and Legal Reality

Da Godfoddah tells us about the "Pig Book:"

The 2006 Congressional Pig Book is the latest installment of Citizens Against Government Waste’s (CAGW) 16-year exposé of pork-barrel spending.

This year’s list includes: $13,500,000 for the International Fund for Ireland, which helped finance the World Toilet Summit; $6,435,000 for wood utilization research; $1,000,000 for the Waterfree Urinal Conservation Initiative; and $500,000 for the Sparta Teapot Museum in Sparta, N.C....

Congress porked out at record dollar levels with $29 billion in pork for 2006, or 6.2 percent more than last year’s total of $27.3 billion. In fact, the total cost of pork has increased by 29 percent since fiscal 2003. Total pork identified by CAGW since 1991 adds up to $241 billion. By passing pork-laden appropriations bills and by not vetoing a single spending bill, Congress and the President of the United States have respectively failed the American taxpayer. While the ramifications of these failures may not be completely visible today, they surely will be when future generations will be strangled with increasing debt.

Yeah, we know about that.

But did you know that our President has no legal obligation to SPEND the "earmarks?" His Departments can simply ignore the Congressional CrapOLa.

GWB is fully aware of this.

Here's Bob Novak's column from Human Events (excerpts)

...Sen. Jim DeMint, a freshman Republican from South Carolina, had a better idea for the president: Why not instruct your department heads to ignore the earmarks Congress adds to your budget?

DeMint was not encouraging Bush to take the law into his own hands and defy statutes passed by Congress. A March 6 report by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) said more than 95 percent of all earmarks were not written into law but were merely contained in the reports of congressional committees and legislative managers. "Earmarks that appear in committee reports and the statements of managers do not legally bind agencies," said the report.

The president did not respond to DeMint at the meeting, and that signifies opposition to the idea. Administration officials have flinched from any such confrontation with Congress.

There's a reason: GWB knows that the "economic growth" of the US is influenced by profligate and dissolute Gummint Spending (see Keynes.)

Who says cynics aren't right?

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