Two ‘Porkers of the Year’

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The non-partisan watchdog Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) has announced the results of its online poll for the 2021 Porker of the Year.

The group does a masterful job of shining light on folks in Washington who waste our tax dollars. And it’s an equal-opportunity antagonist; when the GOP is running Congress, many of the Porkers of the Month are Republicans. And when the Dems are in charge (like now) members of that party are more often singled out.

For 2021’s big prize, the group asked visitors to its website to choose among six candidates “who were guilty of plugging pricey policies, promoting earmarks, pushing wasteful spending bills for infrastructure and social programs, and demanding that the IRS spy on Americans’ bank accounts.”

All are worthy of criticism. But as a side note, I suggest that sometime CAGW nominates a few media outlets, which constantly praise the porkers and demean those who want to spend our money a little more responsibly.

But now, for the 2021 top award:

“After the votes were tallied,” the group announced, “the dishonor fell to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont.”

The duo had previously been named the September 2021 Porkers of the Month “for endangering America’s financial stability with their massive spending plan.”

“Speaker Pelosi and Sen. Sanders led the charge to pass a $3.5 trillion spending bill based on President Biden’s ‘Build Back Better’ plan that would devastate the economy and dramatically increase the size, scope, and power of the federal government,” CAGW reported.

“Sen. Sanders claimed he had already been through a lot of ‘negotiations and pain’ while debating the package, and said he had ‘already made a major, major compromise’ with his original $6 trillion plan. Speaker Pelosi said she was ‘pretty excited’ and ‘very exhilarated’ over the taxes and spending contained in the $3.5 trillion budget, and found the time to add $200 million for the Presidio Park [in her home state of California], which says on its website that it operates ‘at no cost to taxpayers.’”

Said CAGW President Tom Schatz, “The results are not surprising, as Speaker Pelosi and Sen. Sanders have a long history of advocating for higher taxes and more government control. Their budget plan was a giant insult to taxpayers, especially when $3.5 trillion wasn’t enough for Sen. Sanders and Speaker Pelosi was ecstatic about spending that much money.”

Second Place went to Treasure Secretary Janet Yellen “for demanding that the IRS be allowed to investigate every detail of how Americans spend their money.”

• • •

Whether to get vaccinated or wear a mask don’t sound like political decisions, yet the COVID-19 pandemic has become oddly political.

At first, Democrats rejected the vaccine because former President Trump pushed its rushed development. Now Republicans are the least likely to get vaccinated.

Unfortunately, information about the virus has been contradictory and confusing. And that’s not a right-wing opinion. Look what CNN’s Brian Stelter said Sunday.

“It is so sad but it’s true. The CDC has turned into a punch line,” Mr. Stelter said of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during his “Reliable Sources” program. “There’s a huge credibility crisis for the CDC … it just causes people, if they hear all these mixed messages and all this confusion, it’s all too complicated, they just move on and ignore it.”

And this summer, the New York Times ran an opinion piece under the headline, “The CDC Needs to Stop Confusing the Public.”

If all the confusion would come to an end, the public might become less divided over our response to the pandemic.

Contact Bart Adams at
badams@mydailyrecord.com. 

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