Why doesn’t the government first do a systematic audit of all departments to cut waste and fraud? We could save billions be simply figuring out where the money that we do spend actually goes and tighten up from there.
Here’s a perfect example –
As much as $60 billion in U.S. tax dollars has been lost to waste and fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade due to lax oversight of contractors, poor planning and corruption, according to an independent panel.
The commission cited numerous examples of waste, including a $360 million U.S.-financed agricultural development program in Afghanistan. The effort began as a $60 million project in 2009 to distribute vouchers for wheat seed and fertilizer in drought-stricken areas of northern Afghanistan. The program expanded into the south and east. Soon the U.S. was spending a $1 million a day on the program, creating an environment ripe for waste and abuse, the commission said.
"Paying villagers for what they used to do voluntarily destroyed local initiatives and diverted project goods into Pakistan for resale," the commission said.
The Afghan insurgency's second largest funding source after the illegal drug trade is the diversion of money from U.S.-backed construction projects and transportation contracts, according to the commission. But the report does not say how much money has been funneled to the insurgency. The money typically is lost when insurgents and warlords threaten Afghan subcontractors with violence unless they pay for protection, according to the report.
The Associated Press reported earlier this month that U.S. military authorities in Kabul believe $360 million in U.S. tax dollars has ended up in the hands of people the American-led coalition has spent nearly a decade battling: the Taliban, criminals and power brokers with ties to both. The military said only a small percentage of the $360 million has been garnered by the Taliban and insurgent groups. Most of the money was lost to profiteering, bribery and extortion by criminals and power brokers.
Talk about a waste of money. Before we start gutting programs, why not first figure out what in the world is actually being done with our tax dollars and then streamline, reorganize, and cut waste and fraud? Wouldn’t it make more sense to actually understand the budget before we start cutting programs? I know that there are people on both sides on the isle that just want to cut things that they don’t like, but that attitude is asinine. Our politicians need to do a real and true assessment of the budget and go from there, first gutting waste and fraud and then determining which things need to be cut.