Sen. Tom Coburn attempts to help answer that question. He’s published a helpful study taking aim at many of the projects being funded by the “stimulus” bill. Reports Sen. Coburn:
Earl Devaney, head of the Recovery Act Accountability and Transparency (RAT) Board, estimates that at least $55 billion of the money may be lost to waste, fraud and abuse.2 Unfortunately, we all have come to expect waste and mismanagement when Washington spends money. But this time the expectation must be different. When ordinary Americans are laid off or lose their jobs, they are losing more than just income. They are losing their health insurance, as well as their ability to pay their mortgages, to send their kids to school, or even provide necessities like food and shelter.
This report is an attempt to look beyond the statistics of jobs created or even money wasted. It, instead, provides a closer examination of 100 projects, programs and missteps – worth $5.5 billion – some even in my own home state of Oklahoma, that are likely to fail the expectation of out of work Americans who were hoping this bill would create good jobs that they are desperately seeking so that they can provide for their families once again.
Sen. Coburn promises to keep issuing reports in the future. He is one of the public servants who truly lives up to that name.
Unfortunately, the better the job that Sen. Coburn does, the more depressing the results. But remember: It’s only money. Don’t worry, be happy.
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