Tis the holiday season and with Thanksgiving and Christmas already behind us and the New Year just ahead, we are all in a festive mood. This includes Washington which, according to the latest Christmas edition of Rand Paul’s The Waste Report, gave away $50,000 for a TV commercial on Christmas trees in Georgia. Because it completely makes sense that Uncle Sam is charitable for Christmas and gives a little helping hand to Georgia’s Christmas tree industry, right?
There is only one problem in all this. Georgia is among the top Christmas tree producers in the United States with more than 50,000 trees produced, writes Paul. In fact, it produces more trees than 28 other states, so it’s not really “fledgling” or “struggling” in any way or form.
So why does Washington insist on spending money on things like this when the country is over $18 trillion in debt, asks Paul on The Blaze.
Here are other things that Paul’s Waste Report has found the government to be spending taxpayer money on:
- $6 million to promote Albanian tourism
- $43 million for a gas station in Afghanistan
- $15 million to allow a golf club manufacturer to conduct research in space
- $15.6 million on foreign students’ tuition
- $450,000 for a climate change video game made by the National Science Foundation
- $175 million for a controversial study on sleep apnea
- $218,000 campaign to sterilize feral coyotes
- $100,000 for a flower show for the National Park Service
- And much, much more.
Now you might ask why did the government give away $50k for a TV commercial on Christmas trees? Well, there’s a “perfectly” good explanation for it.
According to the Department of Agriculture, all crops, including Christmas trees are a “specialty product” (whatever that means) and are therefore “eligible for special marketing assistance grants”.
Let’s just ignore the fact that each year around this time around 30 million trees are sold. It’s hardly a niche market in need of government money.
Should Washington be spending taxpayer dollars on Christmas tree commercials and video games while the country is in huge debt? Leave a comment below about Senator Paul’s Waste Report or join the conversation on Facebook or Twitter.
(Photo courtesy of arvind grover, Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0)
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