The WasteWatcher: The Staff Blog of Citizens Against Government Waste

The WasteWatcher

The WasteWatcher is the staff blog of Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) and the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW). For questions, contact blog@cagw.org.




British Expense Scandal Should be Lesson for U.S. Lawmakers

The TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA) in Great Britain was founded in 2004 by Andrew Allum, Matthew Elliott and Florence Heath to “represent taxpayers and to fight for lower taxes.”  Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) has been working with the organization on a wide variety of issues, including more transparency in government for British taxpayers.

Obama Administration Proposal Would Cost U.S. Jobs

The Obama administration keeps coming forward with proposals that would undermine the economic recovery even as it claims to be trying to save it.  At least $1 trillion has been spent to supposedly “stimulate” the economy and the budget deficit is at a record level.  Yet, the economic gurus within the executive branch have floated another proposal that is both incongruous and counterproductive.

Stimulating the Dead

When the federal government decided to spend $787 billion to stimulate the economy in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), most Americans understood, contrary to most of the tough talk about accountability and transparency, that a percentage of these funds would be wasted.  To try and assuage these fears, Congress and Obama Administration declared that the stimulus money would be focused on “shovel ready” projects.

Public vs. Private: May the Best Contractor Win

The government should not compete with its citizens; it should rely on the private sector for commercially-available goods and services.  This is a common-sense idea: allow individuals, small businesses, and entrepreneurial companies to contract with the government, instead of creating duplicative and expensive government-run agencies and programs.

A “Generic” Call for Change

As Congress braces for the largest reform of healthcare in the nation’s history, lost in the debate has been an issue critical to federal and state healthcare budgets, as well as the ability of consumers to afford lifesaving drugs.  The issue is whether Congress should grant generic makers of the next generation of medications called “biologics” the same regulatory approval treatment it did for chemical drugs under the 1984 Hatch-Waxman Act.

Healthcare Reform: A Pricey Prescription

President Obama promised this would be the year of health care reform, but many are bracing for what this “reform” could really mean.  After much anticipation, Democrats have started to unveil their healthcare reform plans, revealing new policy proposals that would, among other things, expand Medicaid, impose individual and employer mandates, enlarge the almost bankrupt Medicare program, create a new government-run healthcare plan, and cost at least $1 trillion over 10 years.  The overall result will inevitably be higher taxes, less patient choice, and ultimately, rationing of care.

California’s $7 Billion Bailout?

When Congress debates California’s requested $7 billion bailout, instead of looking at the benefits it could bring California, they first need to look at the source of the problem and understand the reasons why the state is in such trouble.  Citizens and business owners in California are outraged that the state government continues to raise taxes while refusing to eliminate wasteful spending.

Don’t Ground the Presidential Helicopter Program

The presidential helicopter has always provided the media with a picturesque backdrop for the president.  One of the most famous images is President Nixon waving goodbye to the White House for the last time on August 9, 1974 from the top step of the helicopter.

Blue Dogs and PAYGO – Living in La La Land

On April 28, 2009, members of the so-called fiscally conservative “Blue Dog” Coalition introduced H.R. 2116, the “Fiscal Honesty and Accountability Act of 2009.”  According to their website, the measure “would strengthen Congress’ commitment to fiscal responsibility and accountability by reinstituting statutory pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) rules.  The legislation, which would require both the House and Senate to abide by PAYGO rules if enacted into law, has been a cornerstone of the Blue Dogs’ efforts to restore fiscal discipline to the federal government.” 

CAGW’s FOIA Project

On February 17, 2009 President Obama signed an economic “stimulus” bill, formally known as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).  More than $787 billion is slated to be spent through ARRA to help revive the economy.

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