The Nation's Pulse

What’s On Your Stupid B.S. List?

Before last Wednesday, commuter survival somehow never made it as a political priority, unlike many a bridge to nowhere.

By 8.6.07

Less than a month after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the satirical website The Onion featured this headline (Warning: profanity): "A Shattered Nation Longs to Care About Stupid (B.S.) Again." The parody was accompanied by images of the trivial pop culture figures, like Britney Spears and Michael Jackson.

The spoof undoubtedly reflected most Americans' cultural cares, which is further reflected by the people they elect to represent them. After Wednesday's collapse of the I-35 bridge in Minneapolis, it's appropriate to highlight the priorities of the politicians who for years have cared about "stupid (b.s.)" more than core government responsibilities like infrastructure, public safety, and education.

Here, without prejudice against federal, state or local political leaders, is an incomplete list of excrement favored by one or more self-servants that they deemed as more important than, say, the survival of commuters:

* The Bridge to Nowhere, the Railroad to Nowhere, the Road to Nowhere, and the Ferry for Nobody.

* Federal taxpayer-funded junkets.

* State taxpayer-funded junkets.

* Taxpayer-funded junkets and perks for local government officials.

* Welfare for illegal aliens.

* Farm subsidies.

* Climate change research and its costly, nanny-state progeny: Renewable portfolio standards, smart growth, alternative fuel subsidies, etc.

* Light rail projects.

* The Sparta Teapot Museum.

* The Vulcan Monument.

* Sham earmark reform.

* Legislative "discretionary funds".

* Tobacco settlement slush funds.

* The Randy Parton (brother of Dolly) Musical Theatre.

* Bribes.

That's just a little list on my radar screen. I'm sure readers have their own ideas. The point for our liberal friends is to please, spare us the claims of insufficient resources to maintain our nation's infrastructure. The problem has been known for a long time, and ignored in favor of wasteful spending.

Is this too simplistic a perspective? Sen. John McCain doesn't think so, and I doubt his fellow critics of pork would disagree.

The only question left is: Who cares more about "stupid b.s.," politicians or the people who elect them?

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About the Author

Paul Chesser publishes, a news aggregator for North Carolina, and is a contributor of articles, research and investigative reports for both national and state-level free-market think tanks.