An earmark is the definition of waste, fraud and abuse!
You've heard of earmarks, right? They're the line-item budget expenditures that allow sneaky politicians to spend your tax money without public hearings or review. “Let my little earmark project slip by and I'll do the same for your project,” says the politician. That's how it works in the real world. They do it for the benefit of colleagues, campaign donors and the ever-present lobbyist. They trade favors by stuffing little projects into big spending bills…to the tune of $16 billion per year or $220 from every tax-paying American family!
Here's What We're Fighting:
Waste – Waste describes any situation in which taxpayers don't receive reasonable value for their money in connection with government-funded activities. This may be due to inappropriate acts or omissions by those who control government resources. Although not necessarily a violation of law, at Wasted America, we believe it's worse than a crime — it's a violation of the public trust. It's an abuse of power. We're committed to exposing the worst offenders.
Fraud – Government auditing standards define fraud as a type of illegal act involving obtaining something of value through willful misrepresentation. Of course, it's tough to argue -- but we'll do our best.
Abuse – Abuse is defined as “behavior that is indecent or improper when compared with behavior that a prudent person would consider reasonable and necessary given the facts and circumstances.” We have to ask, is it reasonable and necessary to expand our national debt, year after year? We don't think so.
Each episode of Wasted America carries a rating — W for waste, F for fraud, and A, for abuse. No matter how you define government waste, fraud or abuse, we can all agree that these are growing problems. Please join us in the fight to end government waste — and Wasted America for a laugh and to vote on spending issues that matter.