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December 16, 2010

Senator Coburn Lists Every Bit of Pork In New Omnibus Spending Bill

Drew just mentioned this, and Bennett (Appropriator, UT) attempting to get all the sweet sweet pork he can before leaving office.

Coburn's database has all the pork for your inspection.

Here are two that Slublog has called out so far:

$500,000: Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate, Boston, MA, for educational program development, including an endowment

Requested by Marky in the House and Kerry in the Senate.

From Debbie Stabenow:

$800,000: Crim Fitness Foundation, Flint, MI for a youth program to combat obesity in Flint school

But a little funnier, this from Senatrix Kay Hagan of North Carolina:

$750,000: Bennett College for Women, Greensboro, NC to establish a Center for Women

Slublog asks increduously: A college for women needs a special federal grant to establish a center for women? Really?

And a cool million for La Raza, thanks to Jeff Bingaman:

$1,000,000: National Council of La Raza, Washington, DC, for the Institute of Hispanic Health

Oh wait, another million for La Raza:

$1,000,000: Capitalization of a Revolving Loan Fund to be Used for Nationwide Community Development Activities (La Raza is the actual recipient)

That's requested by two Congressmen, Gutierrez and Hinojosa.


Funny how so many of those voting to "ban" earmarks are requesting millions of dollars' worth of them.

The Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell, requested nearly $86.1 million for Kentucky, including $18 million for a railroad upgrade at Fort Knox, $1 million to build a Kentucky Blood Bank Center and $1 million for waterfront development in Paducah.

Senator Bill Nelson of Florida, one of seven Democrats who voted with Republicans to ban earmarks, had $30 million in requests, including $8 million to move the main gate of Patrick Air Force Base and $400,000 to create a research park in Sebring.

The spending bill also contained dozens of earmarks for projects in the home states of Senator John Cornyn, Republican of Texas, and Senator John Thune, Republican of South Dakota, who appeared at a news conference Wednesday to criticize Democrats for what they called a pork-laden spending bill.

Mr. Cornyn requested nearly $93.5 million, including $1 million for a National Wind Resource Center. Along with Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, another Texas Republican, he asked for $2 million for the Space Alliance Technology Outreach Program, which transfers the knowledge and technology of the space program to small businesses, according to the groupís Web site.

Mr. Thune requested nearly $38.5 million, most of it with his fellow South Dakota senator, Tim Johnson, a Democrat. About $25 million was for construction at military installations.

It's a pet theory of mine that if a culture supports a particular kind of corruption, wars on corruption are the wrong way to go, because the culture doesn't support it, and will undermine it at every turn.

And the way you have to deal with that is to create a safe-harbor for corruption, and allowable level, and the escalating penalties and reductions regarding what's permitted by the safe-harbor, over time, so that you give the culture time to adapt, and actually adopt the new rules as real rules. So, if the police are corrupt, first you really start cracking down on the big stuff, while continuing to let the small stuff slide. Then you start going after the medium stuff. Then finally you really start going after all sorts of corruption.

This is based on the idea that only 10% of the population is truly, incorruptibly good, and only 10% truly, incorrigibly bad, and that the other 80% will be either good or bad depending on what it seems they can get away with, what the culture will allow. You can't prosecute the 90% of cops who will be corrupt in a corrupt system, so you escalate enforcement slowly, so that the 80% ethical swingers catch up and begin behaving like the 10% who are always good behave. Now that you've cleaved between the situationally-bad and innately-bad, and gotten the situationally-bad to begin acting situationally-good, you start throwing the book at everyone you catch.

Something like that might be needed with earmarks. A flat ban just seems unacceptable to these jerkoffs. Maybe some cap, based on state size, which is reduced every year until it's a very small little slush fund.


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posted by Ace at 02:06 PM

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