The Swine Line: The Staff Blog of Citizens Against Government Waste

The Swine Line

The Swine Line 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.


President Clinton Did Not Say What You Think He Said

There’s been a lot of hoopla about former-President Bill Clinton’s recent criticism of Obamacare and the news media is playing some of the more juicer tidbits.

 

Clinton/Trump Round 2: Taxpayers Deserve a Policy Debate

Before the first Presidential debate on September 27, 2016, CAGW proposed policy questions that would enlighten taxpayers as to where each candidate stands on critical government waste issues facing the nation. Unfortunately, the debate utterly failed to discuss any of these issues with any depth, choosing to focus on shenanigans instead of substance.

Nothing to See Here. Move Along.

Yesterday, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) finally received an answer from the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Ethics regarding an ethics complaint that we, and nine other signatories, submitted to them more than a year ago.

Transparency Needed at the FCC

There is a problem with transparency at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) relating to the sharing of information with the public on critical regulatory matters under consideration.

Congress Passes Continuing Resolution

On September 28, 2016, the U.S. Senate and, a few hours later, the House of Representatives passed a resolution that would continue the funding of the government through December 9, 2016 – narrowly missing the last day of this fiscal year, which ends on the September 30th.  Since Congress failed to pass the 12 individual appropriations bills (or a budget) before the beginning of the new fiscal year, the continuing resolution (C.R.) was necessary to prevent another government shutdown.

Set-Top Box Proposal Takes Center Stage

Technology innovations are great, and the advancement of the electronics industry over the past 20 years has been astounding.  However, when the federal government steps in to mandate technology, typically progress comes to a halt.  Such is the case with the set-top box.  The cable industry has been in the process of moving away from using these dusty dinosaurs of video viewing by developing apps that consumers will be able to load on any device to view their programming.  Sounds great, right?

It’s Getting Rockier for Obamacare in Tennessee

Citizens Against Government Waste’s August WasteWatcher discussed how many states were seeing large health insurance rate increases in the Affordable Care Act’s (Obamacare) exchanges.  In the state of Tennessee, Cigna and Humana revised their original premium rate increase request from an average of 23 percent to 46 percent and an average of 29 percent to 44.3 percent respectively.  The Tennessean

Farewell CO-OP Number 17

In an August 3, 2016 NJBiz article, the headline blared “N.J. rules helped guide Health Republic to success as Obamacare co-op!" The article goes on to praise the fact that Health Republic was “one of the seven health insurance co-ops still standing” and that its stability had a lot to do with the fact that “New Jersey’s 1992 health care reform laws were similar to the current Affordable Care Act, and allowed both insurers and actuaries to draw from prior experience to create health plans and pricing.”  The article contends that New Jersey's CO-OP is a great success story.

Government Should Not Restrict Free-Data Plans

One only needs to look at the mobile phone bill of a connected teenager’s parent to know that mobile data use is on the rise.  Often driven by homework and school expectations, teenagers consume large amounts of mobile data performing classroom internet searches, video messaging their fellow students working on team assignments, as well as watching video streams and podcasts.  These activities are in addition to the music streaming and game playing one normally associates with teenage internet use.  For households with limited income, paying for data overages can often strain the family bud

SIGAR: U.S. Facilitated Afghan Corruption, Reacted Slowly

The first in a series of “lessons learned” reports released in September 2016 by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) John Sopko has indicated that the U.S. introduced billions of dollars of aid into a corrupt system, sometimes benefiting militia members and warlords.  

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