Showing posts with label Pass the Pork. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pass the Pork. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Another version of the Swine Flu has Struck America!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Well... Cheops had his pyramid..


And since liberal democrats envision themselves as royalty, the following comes as no surprise:

James Taranto of the Wall Street Journal found this outrage:

"More than one out of every five dollars of the $126 million Massachusetts is receiving in earmarks from a $410 billion federal spending package is going to help preserve the legacy of the Kennedys," the Associated Press reports from Boston:

The bill includes $5.8 million for the planning and design of a building to house a new Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Senate. The funding may also help support an endowment for the institute.

The bill also includes $22 million to expand facilities at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum and $5 million more for a new gateway to the Boston Harbor Islands on the Rose Kennedy Greenway, a park system in downtown Boston named after Kennedy's mother and built on land opened up by the Big Dig highway project.

Taranto added: "We suppose if you can't make history, you might as well buy it with other people's money."

All hail Caesar.

Even if he is a fat, bloated, drunken buffoon who lets his girlfriend die while he swims away.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Track the Pork.

There's a site that I found that allows one to track the pork projects requested in the "shovel ready" projects in your own backyard. Additionally, it allows for viewer feedback for each project. The site explains:
StimulusWatch.org was built to to help the new administration keep its pledge and to hold public officials to account. We do this by allowing you, citizens around the country with local knowledge about the proposed projects in your city, to find, discuss and rate those projects.
For instance, the page of projects requested for St. Cloud can be found here.

The total cost of all the projects submitted by St. Cloud is $41,687,000

Description City State Jobs Cost Program Type Vote Ratio
10th Avenue North Area Neighborhood Rehabilitation St. Cloud MN 23 $1,800,000 CDBG -13
10th Avenue North Area Neighborhood Rehabilitation - Phase 2 St. Cloud MN 40 $3,750,000 CDBG -7
22nd Avenue North Neighborhood Rehabilitation St. Cloud MN 45 $4,500,000 CDBG -8
54th and 38th Avenue Interceptor St. Cloud MN 3 $190,000 Water -3
Boiler and Roof Replacement - Wastewater Treatment Facility St. Cloud MN 23 $1,860,000 Energy -1
Breckenridge and Cooper Avenue Trail Connection to Lake Wobegon Trail St. Cloud MN 10 $800,000 CDBG -43
Collection System SCADA Programming & Installation St. Cloud MN 4 $300,000 Water -3
East Lake Boulevard Project St. Cloud MN 6 $500,000 CDBG -5
Emergency Standby Generator for Central Maintenance Facility St. Cloud MN 2 $115,000 Energy -7
Energy efficient window upgrade to City Hall Building with Atrium St. Cloud MN 2 $130,000 Energy -7
Geo-Thermo Heat System for Central Maintenance Facility St. Cloud MN 5 $400,000 Energy 1
HVAC Control for City Hall Building St. Cloud MN 2 $70,000 Energy -5
Inset pavement lighting at St. Cloud Regional Airport St. Cloud MN 19 $1,500,000 Airport 7
Intersection of 25th Ave N (Route 132) and 3rd St N (Route 135) - Full signal system replacement St. Cloud MN 3 $215,000 Streets/Roads -3
Intersection of 7th Ave S (Route 110) and 1st St S (Route 118) - Full signal system replacement St. Cloud MN 3 $215,000 Streets/Roads -3
Intersection of 9th Ave S (Route 145) and 16th St S (Route 129) - Signal system upgrade including system controller, video detection and pedestrian countdown timers St. Cloud MN 2 $100,000 Streets/Roads -3
Jet Bridge for St. Cloud Regional Airport Terminal Building St. Cloud MN 8 $600,000 Airport 3
Lincoln Avenue Rehabilitation/Lining Project St. Cloud MN 3 $246,000 Water -2
Lower Pan Interceptor Lining Project St. Cloud MN 25 $2,000,000 Water -3
Main Forcemain Inspection St. Cloud MN 3 $150,000 Water -3
Metro Interceptor Rehabilitation Project St. Cloud MN 19 $1,500,000 Water -5
Northway Liftstation Rehabilitation St. Cloud MN 16 $1,300,000 Water -2
Skate Plaza Improvement St. Cloud MN 9 $750,000 CDBG -110
State Aid Route 123 (Washington Memorial Drive) - 11th St S to CSAH 75 - Full reconstruction of roadway St. Cloud MN 4 $320,000 Streets/Roads -4
State Aid Route 132 (25th Ave) - 1st St N to 3rd St N - Partial depth mill and overlay St. Cloud MN 2 $100,000 Streets/Roads -2
State Aid Route 145 (9th Ave) - 8th St N to 15th St N - full depth mill and reconstruction of asphalt surface St. Cloud MN 8 $650,000 Streets/Roads -3
Street name upgrade program St. Cloud MN 2 $150,000 Streets/Roads -72
University Drive Boulevard Beautification Project St. Cloud MN 2 $150,000 CDBG -22
Upper Pan Interceptor Lining Project St. Cloud MN 11 $840,000 Water -5
UV-Disinfection and Emergency Generator Project - Wastewater Treatment Facility St. Cloud MN 108 $8,661,000 Energy -3
Vacuum Pump Liftstation Replacements (5) St. Cloud MN 25 $2,000,000 Water 0
Water Treatment Facility Rehabilitation and Improvement Project St. Cloud MN 70 $5,825,000 Water 2

Much like I found last night at the Magical Mystery "Listening" tour, it is my contention that your feedback at the site will mean little or next to nothing. But at any rate, it's good to be informed.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Homer Revisited.


(please click on pic for full size)

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Murtha won't let military directly lobby for their needs

It has long been known that Jack Murtha has been living high off the hog with regard to earmarks that have been given to his military contracting buddies. As a matter of fact, he's making such good money from his beneficiaries that he wants to streamline the earmark process: He plans to bypass advice by members of the military altogether:

The House’s top defense appropriator has pledged to help strengthen the role of the Pentagon’s comptroller in an effort to curb lobbying by the military services for their controversial programs.

Why should he listen to the military, as the military itself doesn't provide Jack with campaign contributions.

As I've stated before, Jack Murtha does nothing without there being something in it for Jack Murtha. To Jack Murtha, the military is merely a tool he uses to keep his fat backside in power, or to advance his political career, a/la his slanderous declaration of guilt toward the Haditha Marines.

I don't know; perhaps I'm a bit too cynical. I'm absolutely positive that there is no lobbying going on when Concurrent Technologies receives a taxpayer-funded porkbarrel contract to the tune of $200 million dollars... or is there?
Yet, the Murtha situation is very troubling when you look at CTC’s Form 990. With the exception of three individuals listed on the schedule of officers and directors, all have contributed to Murtha’s congressional campaigns since 2002.

[SNIP]

The Times also notes that CTC has paid somewhere around $500,000 to a lobbying firm. The lobbying firm's executives and clients have contributed over $1.2 million to Murtha in campaign contributions (the Times refers to these as donations) since 1999, according to the Times.

So we have a congressman who was a driving force behind the creation of this tax-exempt entity. That same congressman is earmarking significant amounts of money to that organization. Those who are in control of the organization (several of whom receive significant salaries from CTC) contribute large amounts of money to the congressman’s campaign. We can only wonder how the entity distributes the federal grant money within the local community.

I mean, with sweetheart deals like that, why should Murtha even bother to take the time listen to those pesky military folks who actually know what they need?

I mean, there's gold in them there earmarks, right, Jihad Jack?

(Cross-posted at Murtha Must Go!!)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Which one's the Pig?

"Just the other day, our opponent brought up earmarks, and frankly I was surprised that he did, considering his record on earmarks. I didn't think he'd want to go there. In just three years, our opponent has requested nearly a billion dollars in earmarks, and that's about a million dollars every working day.

We reformed the abuses of earmarks in our state, and *it was while our opponent was requesting a billion dollars in earmarks as a Senatorial privilege. What I was doing was vetoing half a billion dollars as an executive responsibility*."

- Governor Sarah Palin. Fairfax, VA speech.

10, September, 2008

I rest my case.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Kline announces "Stop the Pork" Initiative: Notes from Conference call

I participated in a blogger conference call this morning with Congressman John Kline regarding his initiative to repair the broken earmark system in Congress. After being in congress for awhile, Kline decided that the current system of earmarks was corrupt; there was no system of setting priorities of spending on earmarks based on merits; rather it was who the congressman knew, what stature the person held in congress; committee assignments, etc. that would dictate whether an earmark would be approved. As a result, Kline decided he would be one of only 12 that year (that list included Congresswoman Michele Bachmann) that would no longer participate in the earmark process until it was fixed. Now there are around 50 who have taken a similar position, including a number of democrats, including, surprisingly, Henry Waxman.

Kline decided to open a microsite with a petition called stopthepork.com.

An earmark is when a member of congress marks money that is specified for a specific project, that cannot be spent for anything else. Not that all projects are silly, but the current system doesn't allow earmarks to compete on their merits. It all depends on the congressman's current stature, placement on committees, etc., So Kline decided he wasn't going to participate in what he called a "broken system."

Last year there were over 30,000 requests for earmarks; 12,000 were funded.

Q: What is the long-term vision?

A: We won't ban earmarks entirely. Congress' duty is to spend money, and Congress has the constitional right to direct money. The trouble is that the current system has nothing to do with the rational setting of priorities; the plan is to stop earmarks until a rational system of priorities with earmarks can be developed.

Currently, Democrats have stated that they will not bring forth any appropriations bill until after the election, as they are apparently afraid of taxpayer backlash should any of the frivolous spending habits see the light of day in an election year.

Currently congresscritters have been talking about, among other things, raising the federal gas tax for road and bridge infrastructure, while earmarks continue unabated supporting
• olive fruit fly research in Paris, France

• the Montana Sheep Institute

• the Lobster Institute

• and even money to develop a walking tour of Boydton, Virginia

It is definitely high time to develop a system that will put a check on wasteful spending and prioritize hard-earned taxpayer dollars.

Head to stopthepork.com and sign the petition.

Friday, March 14, 2008

More Pork, Please!



That's the message given by the democrat-controlled U.S. House of Representatives yesterday as they voted to defeat a measure that would have otherwise put a moratorium on all earmarks for the next year.

Bums.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Jack Murtha: Unabashedly Porcine.

It is widely spread news that the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC) at Johnstown is more or less a slush fund for Jihad Jack Murtha's perpetual re-election to PA-12's U.S. congressional seat. A poster child for government waste and the consequences of the "earmark mentality," NDIC, and Murtha's connection to it, has been the subject of continuing ethics violation investigations. Not only is Murtha so arrogant as to accept his connection to the pork-laden, waste-laden redundant bureaucratic bloat-ocracy, he's proud of it:
Van Osdol: "Congressman, what about the National Drug Intelligence Center?"

Murtha:
"You're from WTAE?"

Van Osdol:
"Yes, sir."

Murtha:
"Nice to see you."

Van Osdol:
"What are you going to do to secure funding for that, sir?"

When Van Osdol tried to keep asking questions, one of Murtha's men tried to block the television camera.

Van Osdol:
"Congressman, can you respond to the criticism that people say NDIC is just a pork barrel program?"

Murtha: "No comment. How's that?"

Van Osdol:
"Why don't you want to talk about that program, sir?"

Murtha:
"Just talk to them about it. Talk to NDIC."

Van Osdol:
"We've talked to NDIC."

Murtha:
"What did they tell you?"

Van Osdol:
"They say you are the man who keeps it going."

Murtha: "That's right. You got that right."
Heh. Straight from the horse's pig's mouth.

PA-12, there's a reason that politicians, like diapers, need to be changed.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

I'm telling you governor...

Like a one-night stand with a Hennepin Avenue Hooker, we're all going to regret this:

Majority House and Senate Democrats said there's no reason for Pawlenty to delay his session order.


"We think Minnesotans are waiting on us and we want to get to business here," said House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, DFL-Minneapolis.


"We're ready to go," added Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller, DFL-Minneapolis.


...they said, while salivating and rubbing their hands.


How do you stop lemmings from going over the cliff?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Murtha--The Pork King!



When it comes to nabbing pork hard-earned taxpayer money and giving it to cronies, Murtha remains king!
Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.), chairman of the House Appropriations defense panel, has secured the most earmarked dollars in the 2008 military spending bill, followed closely by the panel’s ranking member Rep. Bill Young (R-Fla.).

Even though Young secured 52 earmarks, worth $117.2 million — and co-sponsored at least $27 million worth of others — Murtha’s 48 earmarks amount to a total of $150.5 million, according to a database compiled by the watchdog organization Taxpayers for Common Sense (TCS).

The House is expected to take up the $459.6 billion defense appropriations bill Friday. It contains 1,337 earmarks, costing $3.07 billion, which is less than half the number and value of earmarks in last year’s bill.

Keith Ashdown of TCS said, however, that the sum is derived from only the earmarks that the panel disclosed at the back of the bill’s report. He expects to find undisclosed projects as well.


[snip]
Murtha, the defense industry’s darling, has been known throughout his tenure on the defense panel to shell out a large number of earmarks. His biggest earmark in the bill is $23 million for the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC), a move that sparked a fierce fight with Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.), who earlier this year voted in a private meeting to strip Murtha’s earmark.

The Bush administration requested $16 million to shut down the center, which is in Murtha’s district, because it replicated the work of a similar center.

Murtha’s second highest earmark is for $15 million for a military molecular medicine initiative.

Young has several requests valued at $5 million for projects such as ballistic missile range safety technology, the Common Aero Vehicle (another missile program) and rapid-response counter-measures to chemical and biological weapons.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Under the cover of "National Defense"

From Matt Lira:

Erick at Red State and CongressDaily have it right; House Democrats are passing midnight earmarks that they've hidden in the Intelligence Appropriations bill. As if this weren't bad enough, House Democrats have refused to disclose most of those earmarks to the public – they have even refused to disclose them to other Members of Congress.

This is the most abusive and potentially the most d
amaging trick the House Democrats have tried this Congress. For all those who oppose earmarks and want to restore fiscal discipline to the process, I simply cannot stress how damaging this will be if it goes unchecked.

The House Democrats' Earmark Sham is a disgrace – so much for the "most honest and open Congress in history."

Here is a link to Red State's post:
http://www.redstate.com/stories/congress/red_alert_on_the_house_floor

Also, while it is a very procedural clip, it is also meaningful. In this clip, Rep. Westmoreland forces the Dems (through clever procedural questions) to go on the record on how they are hiding these earmarks:


Note the evasiveness of the dem "speaker" when called to the carpet by Westmoreland!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Stupid DFL Tricks, Special Edition..

Results of the bonding bill passed this last weekend:

THE NEWS: By an 84-45 margin, the House passed a bonding bill for more than a quarter-of-a-billion-dollars on Tuesday. Rep. Alice Hausman (D-St. Paul) wrote House File 886.

THE GOOD NEWS, PART 1: House Republicans held Democrats below the 90 votes they would need to override a veto of this pork-laden stew by Governor Tim Pawlenty.

THE GOOD NEWS, PART 2: This was the second such accomplishment by the House Republicans in four days. Last Saturday they held the Democrats below the 90 votes they would need to beat the Governor’s veto on the $900 million of tax and spending increases they proposed for the Transportation Bill.

THE GOOD NEWS PART 3: By hanging together in their first two tests, House Republicans have given the Governor the leverage he needs to suppress the Democrats’ appetite for bigger government, bigger tax burdens, and bigger bureaucracy. Governor Pawlenty’s veto option has credibility, teeth, and muscle.

THE INSIDE NEWS, PART 1: It is expected that no action will be taken on the bill until the end of the session. It contains $120 million of cash that could be shifted away from bonding projects, and many Democrats will want that money for their personal agendas.

THE INSIDE NEWS, PART 2: The only House Republican to vote for the bonding bill was Rep. Kathy Tingelstad. This was a strategic vote. As the Lead Republican on the Bonding Committee, Rep. Tingelstad’s vote will allow her to remain involved in the negotiations on this bill, and could earn her a spot on the House-Senate Conference Committee that will be negotiating until the end of the session in late May.

THE BAD NEWS, PART 1: We should not even be discussing a bonding bill in 2007. These bills are usually reserved for “the bonding session” in even-numbered years. But that trend is being broken again. The Legislature passed a $1 billion bonding bill in each of the last two years.

THE BAD NEWS, PART 2: When you have a bonding bill during “the budget session” in odd-numbered years, it is only supposed to deal with “emergency needs.” But the $290 million bill had only $8 million of “emergency” projects: $2 million of flood relief for Browns Valley and $6 million of emergency repairs to the Oak Park Heights prison.

THE BAD NEWS, PART 3: This bill would set four bad precedents. It would continue a three-year trend toward bloated bonding bills every year, It sets the table for a record-smashing bonding bill next year, with many proposals being heard in 2007, with promises made for 2008. It builds the hidden debt for budgets in future years that will need cash infusions to service long-term debts. And it also sets a record for putting current “cash money” from the General Fund into bonding projects that are supposed to be paid for over a long time because they serve the public over a long time.

ABUSE OF THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS: Most of the provisions in the bonding bill were never heard by the committees that have expertise on particular proposals. The Higher Education committee did not hear about what emergency was calling for huge new funds for the University of Minnesota or MnSCU institutions. The Environment Finance committee did not get to evaluate huge DNR projects. In the Bonding Committee itself, most multi-million projects were considered for less than five minutes, with few or no questions allowed.

ABUSE OF THE POLITICAL PROCESS: The citizens Browns Valley who need quick infrastructure repairs will be held hostage to politicians who want the Governor to sign their pork projects into law before flood relief is given. Local officials from the water-torn community urgently pleaded with Democrats to pass their local relief bill quickly and separately, as has been done for past victims of natural disasters.

POLITICAL ABUSE OF THE TAXPAYERS: House Democrats took particular glee in structuring this year’s bonding bill. Although the 49 House Republicans represent 37 percent of the state’s citizens, bonding projects in their districts accounted for less than 2 percent of the bill (under $5 million). But projects in the districts of 29 freshman Democrats exceeded $58 million. You can bring home the bacon when you are grabbing the pork with both hands.

MY KIND OF TOWN: House Democrats approved $2 million to plan for a high-speed train between Chicago and St. Paul. One House Republican opined that Chicago residents could zoom to Minnesota, pick up their welfare checks, and be back in time to join Jerry Springer’s studio audience.

$61,000 MORE PER STUDENT AT RED LAKE?: By adding another $30 million for the declining enrollment at the Red Lake high school, middle school and two elementary schools, the bonding bill would bring to $80 million the bricks-and-mortar spending by state taxpayers for the four schools.

“CSI: ANDOVER”: Although there is room two expand the state’s two crime labs in St. Paul and Bemidji, House Democrats want to spend $2.5 million to plan for another lab.

OUR SCHOOL’S SWAMP IS A STATE-WIDE TREASURE: House Democrats want to spend $300,000 to buy a swamp next to an elementary school in Brooklyn Center. What students could learn by studying varmints will be a boon to happy children everywhere, so the school district should tap all of us.

“EMERGENCY APPROPRIATIONS?”: A $30 million ice rink, the third at the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center (“DECC”)? Over $71 million of new projects for the University and for MnSCU? Another $20 million for “infrastructure” for Itasca County that was never heard by the economic development committee? Another $1.2 million to add more trails when current trails are not maintained?

THE HOUSE REPUBLICANS’ FOUR AMENDMENTS

1. RESERVE THE “EMERGENCY BONDING BILL” FOR REAL EMERGENCIES: Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Delano) asked the House to cut the $290 million bonding bill down to $8 million. About $2 million of flood aid would have gone to Browns Valley. About $6 million would have gone to emergency repairs and security updates at the prison in Oak Park Heights. The Emmer Amendment failed by a margin of 39-90.

2. FIX THE ROADS WE NEED, BEFORE YOU BUILD MASS TRANSIT SYSTEMS; Rep. Chris DeLaForest (R-Andover) offered an amendment that would have cut most of the fat out of the bill, and would have shifted some of the savings for construction or repair of existing state roads, with other funds going to counties for expansion or repairs of county roads. The DeLaForest Amendment failed by a margin of 37-92.

3. REPAIR STORM DAMAGE BEFORE ADDING TO OVERBURDENED TRAILS: Rep. Joyce Peppin (R-Rogers) offered an amendment to help communities with storm damage for last year, instead of extending the state’s trail system. The DNR and other agencies already cannot keep up with maintenance of the current system. Rep. Peppin said she had offered a bill to propose similar action, but Democrats would not give it a hearing. The Peppin Amendment failed by a margin of 34-95.

4. RESTORE BALANCE BETWEEN ROADS AND MASS TRANSIT: Seeking “a balance that reflects the real life choices made by Minnesota commuters,” Rep. Steve Sviggum (R-Kenyon) offered an amendment to place more of the bill’s investments on cars than empty buses, trolleys, and commuter trains. The Sviggum Amendment failed by a 42-87 margin.

5. OOPS: On the five votes on Tuesday night, House Democrats voted against the taxpayers and fiscal responsibility by a 414-1 margin. Rep. Marsha Swails (D-Woodbury) voted for the Peppin Amendment.

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