2011 Wastebook

Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn has released his new oversight report, “Wastebook 2011” that highlights over $6.5 billion in taxpayer dollars going to projects that are unnecessary, duplicative and low-priority.

This has been called “A Fun Look at Government Spending”. I’m not sure I had any fun skimming the 98 page document full of examples of how wasteful and inappropriate big brother is.

Here is an example from the report.

Creating a Smart Phone App for Picking Tennessee Farmers – (TN)  $181,966

Yes, there‘s an app for that, too. The Tennessee Department of Agriculture received $181,966 in taxpayer dollars to create an app for

 smart phones and tablets to help connect consumers with specialty crop producers.347 The marketing campaign is designed to help further its Pick Tennessee Products campaign and to help consumers find farmers through the online specialty crop directory. Pick Tennessee Products is a program aimed squarely at Tennessee residents in the hopes they will shop locally at Tennessee farms. The program‘s website, which can already be accessed by any smart phone, allows an individual to browse the program‘s listings and even order products online. Those so interested can also find the program on Facebook and Twitter @PickTnProducts), which provide access to social networks free of charge. In addition, the program allows anyone to aim their smart phone at ―quick response (QR) codes, which when instantly launches the program website on the phone. According to one report,  Once the code has done its job, shoppers can instantly access all the local farm-direct ingredients, artisan foods, gift baskets, and even Christmas trees listed at www.picktnproducts.org. While having even more avenues to access the program‘s website may be useful, it is hardly a pressing need. The app is intended to even further increase awareness about the variety of Tennessee agricultural products. Supporters hope that in the ―first six months of the App being used, it will be downloaded 10,000 times and 30,000 times within the first year.‖

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