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Hopping on the "Pork For The Big Easy" bandwagon

Everyone else seems to be offering up their home state's pet federal projects for sacrifice in order to free up money for the reconstruction after Hurricane Katrina (and earning Instalanches in the process), so I figured I'd go do a little digging and see what kind of pork can be trimmed off of Cow Hampshire (if I may mix meat metaphors).

The biggest source of pork seems to be the Highway Bill, so that's where I went. And I see that we are tied for next-to-last at $900 million, even with Hawaii and just barely ahead of Delaware (which, I believe, is almost entirely paved over already).

But hard times call for sacrifices from all, so I'm proposing that he give back at least a third of that money, if not half. We have a few key needs (I-93 from Manchester to Salem desperately needs widening, and the Manchester Access Road will let people get to and from the newly-expanded Manchester Airport more easily), but I'm willing to bet a bunch of those other projects can wait a year or two -- or even longer.

The biggest problem we've had here is that a good chunk of New Hampshire is lumped into the "Greater Boston" area, meaning our needs are tossed in with theirs. While that makes good geographic sense, it's stupid from a political perspective -- it means that moneys intended for improvements up here are controlled down in Massachusetts, and they're much happier spending it within their own borders, with their own contractors.

In the meantime, I'd love to start seeing Congressmen and Senators start stepping forward to give back money with even half the pride they announce they "won" it in the first place. This is a time of national crisis, and we need to act like it.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Hopping on the "Pork For The Big Easy" bandwagon:

» Macmind - Conservative Commentary and Common Sense linked with FEMA - Where the Money Goes - Wasting the Dollars

» Keith D. Milby :: blog linked with Sunday Carnival of Posts

» ThoughtsOnline linked with I'll second New Hampshire giving up its pork...

» Resurgemus dot com linked with Bridge(s) to Nowhere

» Conservative Thinking linked with The Pork is in the Processes

» Resurgemus dot com linked with Bridge(s) to Nowhere

» Myopic Zeal linked with Pork Chops!

» Resurgemus dot com linked with Bridge(s) to Nowhere

Comments (11)

Or those Congressmen and Se... (Below threshold)

Or those Congressmen and Senators could take it a step further and donate half their annual salary. They can still live far more comfortably than I ever have on the other half, plus they would put their money where their mouths are.

What? You don't think they will? But why not? They do so love to spend our money, and why not so much more their own?

Completely agree with you o... (Below threshold)

Completely agree with you on this one. Most of those listed on Bass' website could be put off for some time.

I'd think the 93 improvement shouldn't be skipped. I use rte. 3 and I can tell you how wonderful it is to have that road improved. I've never seen 93 really bad, but I've heard that it is very frustrating to have excessive commutes.

The pork in the Transportation bill should be yanked. I'd think the Energy bill has some very fat pork that could be withdrawn as well.

I would just love to see a modern government that had some sense of fiscal responsibility.

I too will jump on the band... (Below threshold)

I too will jump on the bandwagon and support New Hampshire's efforts to give back what they don't deserve in order to help rebuild from Katrina. Of course, I don't live in New Hampshire so it's easy for me to do so. As for where I live, I'd like to help, but we have no pork.

More here

Brilliant idea!I'm... (Below threshold)

Brilliant idea!

I'm sure we out in California could find some pork to cancel too.

I knew this would happen no... (Below threshold)
spurwing plover:

I knew this would happen no sooner do they have a katrina bill to help out the victims and already the congress and senate are tacking on the pork and just how much will ROBERT BYRD BRAIN be getting? and how much gose OINK OINK?

Let me explain this One Mor... (Below threshold)

Let me explain this One More Time: Highways spending is NOT -- repeat NOT -- pork spending. The money comes from the fuels tax.
For years, Congress used this account to make the budget deficit look smaller (this is also done with other special tax accounts, such as the Abandoned Mine Lands account).
If you want gasoline taxes spent on the general fund, go ahead. Bill Clinton tried that and Republicans, rightly, shot him down.
As for Bob Byrd, cutting through mountains costs more than paving flat lands. I see you use electricity. More than half the electricity in this country comes from coal. Guess where that comes from. Guess what 80-ton trucks do to roads.
I am not suggesting the US owes us a dime.
I am saying we pay the 18.4 cents per gallon, let us use it. Surely makes more sense than having drivers subsidize subway riders in NYC (which is what the highways bill now does)

I agree with Don on this on... (Below threshold)

I agree with Don on this one, it's not federal pork, it's the only way states can get any return for the taxes their residents pay in federal taxes. Instead of giving the money back to the feds to disburse and get credit for it give it directly to states and let the ones actually being generous decide if and how generous they want to be. Most of my time in the U.S. has been spent in a donor state, Texas, which historically pays more to the feds than they get back, if pork is all we can get in return I'll take it, even if it's pork rinds like we get.

Being a US citizen, it's ha... (Below threshold)

Being a US citizen, it's hard to hear people talking about our govt and pork in the same sentence.
Being a Republican, one who hasn't agreed with the party since the social conservatives took over, I look to the comments of a master politician. Tom Delay stated at this website:
House Majority Leader Tom DeLay said yesterday that Republicans have done so well in cutting spending that he declared an "ongoing victory," and said there is simply no fat left to cut in the federal budget.
All you simpletons out there should realize that the WHO had something that each generation had to hear:

We'll be fighting in the streets
With our children at our feet
And the morals that they worship will be gone
And the men who spurred us on
Sit in judgement of all wrong
They decide and the shotgun sings the song

I'll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again


Meet the new boss
Same as the old boss

I've written a few comments on this site and I've always appreciated the ability to express myself here.
One thing I won't do is delude myself. I love to watch sporting events, football, nascar….
…when my team commits a foul I call it.
Where are the voices of the principled Republicans?

I thought Delay's comments ... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

I thought Delay's comments were sarcasm. I'd be sad, but not overly suprised, to be proven wrong on that point.

Maybe the Highway bill is not the best place to fight 'pork'; however overall the idea of pushing a 'cut the pork' campaign could be a real breakthrough moment for the blogosphere. I hope there are many suggestions submitted to Instapundit.

I'm from michigan. Trust m... (Below threshold)

I'm from michigan. Trust me, any highway spending in this state is so not pork. Have any of you ever seen our roads? They're about eight years into a massive rebuilding and have some time to go. (That's what happens when you let things slide for about twenty-five years.)

Ohio's 100% Pork project... (Below threshold)

Ohio's 100% Pork projects (totaling at least $16 million) from the recent Highway Bill are documented at:

Analyzing the earmarks in Section 1702 of H.R. 3 SAFETEA-LU Highway Bill

That will allow for 10 days of FEMA Cruise Ship Operations.






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