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IPFS News Link • Government Waste

7 Ridiculous Examples of Government Waste in 2023

•, Patrick Carroll

Almost nobody doubts that the federal government wastes a lot of money. Every day we hear stories of fraud, mismanagement, and misplaced priorities that cost taxpayers millions, and sometimes billions, of dollars.

But just how much money is wasted? In his annual Festivus report—named after the fictional Seinfeld holiday—Senator Rand Paul tallies up some of the most egregious examples of government waste from the year. The report for 2023 came out on December 22, and as usual, the stories spanned the range from hilarious to deeply disconcerting. In all, Paul identified $900 billion in government waste from 2023.

Here are some of the highlights.

1) $659 Billion for Interest on the National Debt

The national debt continues to skyrocket, from roughly $30 trillion last year to roughly $34 trillion today. One of the many problems with carrying such a heavy debt burden is the sheer volume of money that needs to be spent on interest. As Senator Paul's report highlights, the U.S. Department of the Treasury spent $659 billion(!) in Fiscal Year 2023 just on interest payments.

What's worse, there seems to be no end in sight. "The Congressional Budget Office predicts that we will add an average of $2 trillion in debt annually for the next decade," the report notes. "The U.S. government will add over $5 billion of debt every single day for the next ten years. We borrow over $200 million every hour, we borrow $3 million every minute, and we borrow $60,000 every second."

2) $6 Million to Boost Egyptian Tourism

It is puzzling how the concept of foreign aid ever got off the ground. One can at least understand the reasoning for spending taxpayer money on local schools, roads, and the like, even if you disagree. But how on earth did they sell foreign aid to taxpayers? "Ok, here's the deal. We're going to take your money without your consent, and then we're going to send it to our friends in a far-away country. There's pretty much nothing in it for you, dear taxpayers."