Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Disgrace of Earmarks

The New York Times has gathered the usual bunch of whiners to complain about losing their earmarks.  Even Republican Congressmen are starting to flake out on the earmark issue.

Here are a couple of the most egregious ones:

  1. Burnett County, WI, where they'll lose a $1 million earmark to upgrade the telecommunications system.  The administrator claims the upgrade is required by the federal government.  It is settled law that the federal government cannot impose an unfunded mandate on states.  What will the federal government do, fine or jail her if she doesn't do the project that she claims that Uncle Sam thrust upon her?  Let them try: That would provide great fuel for the activist fire against the overwheening federal government.
  2. The YMCA in Salt Lake City, which lost an earmark that it was going to use to hire new staff members.  Instead they're using volunteers.  According to the executive director, he's trying to "determine right now how to close the gap." Hint: You have closed the gap - with volunteers, which would seem to be appropriate for the YMCA.  Nordicus finds Christian groups dependent on government handouts more repellent that corporate welfare.  At least corporations are not pretending to do the Lord's work.
The entire article contains not one example of an earmark that is funding a project that is within the constitutional competence of the federal government.

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