15 Ridiculous Ways the Government Spends Taxpayer Dollars

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Friday, April 10, 2020


In all of her “somberness,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi signed the articles of impeachment against President Trump. She signed the articles with thirty commemorative pens for the “somber” occasion on Thursday, January 16th. In lieu of this, many Republicans decried this expense as a waste of taxpayer dollars. The pens were given out as collectibles to numerous House Democrats gleefully who helped in the impeachment process. This led liberals to call the move “unusual” and “jarring.”

These pens cost American taxpayers approximately six hundred dollars, or about twenty dollars each. However, this number is nowhere close to other expenditures that bureaucracies have financed in the preceding years. So without further ado, here are fifteen of the strangest ways the government has spent taxpayer dollars.

1.The National Science Foundation spent $75,691 to use leaf blowers on lizards in 2018.

2. The State Department spent $2,000,000 on improving the quality of television content in Moldova during 2018. 

3. Arlington, Virginia, received $1,000,000 in federal funding to build a luxury bus stop with Wi-Fi, heated benches, and sidewalks in 2013. 

4. The National Science Foundation spent over $700,000 on a study to find out whether Neil Armstrong said, “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” or if he said “One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.” Which is it? Well, the researchers never found out.

5. The State Department gave several independent music label executives an all-expenses-paid trip to Brazil in 2013, costing taxpayers $284,300

6. The residence of the U.S. ambassador to NATO in Brussels, Belgium, has been lavishly decorated with plants costing taxpayers $704,000. This forestry includes 960 violets, 960 tulips, 960 begonias, 72 Japanese evergreen shrubs, 504 ivy geraniums, 168 hybrid heath evergreen shrubs, 204 American wintergreens, and 60 English ivy shrubs.

7. The State Department approved a grant for approximately $300,000 to fund Model U.N. competitions and debates in Afghanistan in 2018.

8. The National Science Foundation spent $649,773 to figure out the impact of social justice within STEM education.

9. The Department of Agriculture spent $2,000,000 on an information technology security internship program that hired only one person in 2011.

10. The National Science Foundation spent $706,806 on having mantis shrimp fight over artificial burrows at Duke University in 2016.

11. The Internal Revenue Service spent $60,000 on creating parodies of Gilligan’s Island and Star Trek to train employees in 2010.

12. The United States Agency for International Development is spending $18,000,000 on supporting tourism in Egypt.

13.  A portion of a $1,200,000 grant from the National Science Foundation was spent on creating a real-life version of Pac-Man at the College of Charleston in 2014.

14. The National Science Foundation spent $361,891 to study ancient horse hunting and domestication on the Anatolian Peninsula in 2013.

15. The National Institute of Health gave the University of Kentucky $874,503 over six years to study the habits of quails while high on cocaine.

The national debt continues to climb ever higher. It is time for politicians and bureaucrats alike to stop their frivolous spending in the annual catastrophe known as the congressional budget process. If America wants to solve its debt problem, frivolous expenditures such as the items listed above must be chastised by both parties so the national deficit can be dismantled.

Daniel Elmore is a sophomore at Alexander Central High School in Taylorsville, North Carolina. He is in the top of his class and is very active in local politics as well as his local food pantry.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.


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About Daniel Elmore

Alexander Central High School

Daniel Elmore is a sophomore at Alexander Central High School in Taylorsville, North Carolina. He is in the top of his class and is very active in local politics as well as his local food pantry.

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