One of the justifications members of Congress offer for earmarking is that the Constitution gives the legislative branch the “power of the purse.” Congressional earmarkers often denigrate the executive branch’s inability to effectively allocate funds. But just because the federal bureaucracy does an abysmal job of spending taxpayer money, it doesn’t mean lawmakers would do any better.
The president’s fiscal reform commission started off with some breathtaking chutzpah from Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D-ND):
Fox News’ Glenn Beck Show recently spent a week featuring Chris Edwards and the Downsizing Government website.
When it comes to fraud and abuse, government programs are always chasing their tail. In the private sector, businesses have a financial incentive to stop abuses before they happen. No such incentive exists with government programs. Instead, government officials usually uncover abuses after the fact.
Senate Budget Committee chairman Kent Conrad has released his budget plan for the next five years. The following are some thoughts on the proposal:
The Government Accountability Office recently reviewed 18 federal programs that provide food and nutrition assistance to low-income households, a subset of the nearly 70 programs that provide food and related subsides.
Peter Wallison calls attention to President Obama’s amnesia regarding events that precipitated Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s collapse. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Wallison points out that in 2005 then-Senator Obama joined with his Democratic colleagues in stopping legislation that would have helped rein in the government-sponsored housing duo’s risky behavior: