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.


The FCC’s Taxpayer Funded Holiday Spending Spree

With the holidays behind them, Americans are determining the aftermath of their annual holiday spending spree.  For the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the spending spree at taxpayer expense has just begun.  On December 11, 2014, the FCC met to vote on changes to the E-Rate program, which is part of the Universal Service Fund (USF). 

Fiscally Drunk and Disorderly

In spite of the decisive drubbing that President Obama and his party sustained in the mid-term elections, he continues to gallop along on his (gift) horse, proposing all kinds of new government spending programs, as if nothing has changed.  His behavior is reminiscent of the over-served guy drowning his sorrows at the local watering hole, running up a big tab on his maxed-out credit card, yelling “another round on me for everybody!” 

Repealing Obamacare - Is It Doable?

On January 6, the 114th Congress convened and is now under Republican control, with 54 senators out of 100 in the Senate and 246 representatives out of 435 in the House.  One of the major Republican campaign promises was the full repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), more often referred to as ObamaCare.  But can it be done?

Social Security Reform: Time to Go Big

Among the rules adopted by the House of Representatives is a new provision that bars the transfer of money between the Social Security old age and survivors insurance (OASI) trust fund and the disability insurance (DI) trust fund.  Congress has authorized 11 transfers from OASI to DI in order to temporarily patch the DI trust fund.  In 1994, the last time that DI was on the verge of going broke, Congress reallocated 0.6 percentage points of the payroll tax from OASI to the DI program.  The rule change prevents another temporary fix from occurring and provides a significant opportunity for Congress to adopt reforms in order to help ensure the future solvency of both programs.

CAGW Reaction to SOTU 2015: The President Is in an Alternate Universe

The President’s State of the Union Address would have made a good episode of “The Twilight Zone.” In "The Obama Zone," the following is true, because he either never mentioned the subject matter or failed to properly state the facts...

Sequestration-sensitive Pentagon Misses $145M in Improper Payments

Not all improper payments are fraudulent (inadvertent expenditures are all too common in the federal government, but many are “honest mistakes” without nefarious intent), but all fraud should be considered improper.

Municipal Broadband Proposal Seeks to Overturn State Laws

The President continued his preview of the State of the Union address on January 14, 2015 by announcing that among the top priorities for this year will be “removing barriers” for faster Internet speeds.

To Market, To Market - First U.S. Biosimilar On Its Way

On Wednesday, January 7, 2015, I attended the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee meeting that discussed and recommended approval of the first biosimilar drug, called filgrastim, under the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCI).

Put a Fork In It: Why Taxpayers are Fed Up with Pork-Barrel Spending

For 16 years, Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu fed her constituents powerful promises of pork – pork barrel spending that is. Fortunately for taxpayers, the results of the December 6, 2014 Senate run-off race stifled any of Landrieu’s future attempts at bringing home the bacon, and eliminated the dangerous implications that Landrieu’s fiscal negligence could have further imposed.

114th Congress: The New Sheriff(s) in Town

Unlike the United States Senate, control of the House of Representatives did not change as a result of the November 4, 2014 elections.  However, the Republican majority did expand to at least 244 members, its highest level since the 1928 elections.  Two seats in Louisiana will be decided by a December 6, 2014 runoff election, while the 2nd Congressional District of Arizona is the subject of a mandatory recount, with Republican Martha McSally slightly ahead of incumbent Democrat Ron Barber.

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