“A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking about real money,” Everett Dirksen once said.
Here are a few places billions of dollars, which might have otherwise been in your paycheck, actually went.
- $588.9 million of federal money has been used in response and recovery to Hurricane Rita so far. That’s just individual assistance. The state of Texas is getting $477.6 million on top of that.
- The figures for Alabama state and individual aid from Hurricane Katrina come to $519 million. The numbers for Mississippi and Louisiana weren’t in yet.
- A $104 million TSA screener contract ballooned to $741 million in order to meet difficult deadlines mandated by Congress, and for other purposes.
- And the award for an ICE small business set-aside contract worth $45 million didn’t actually go to a small business.
- But all that pales in comparison to the defense budget. The Special Operations Command wants $7.4 billion to expand SOCOM by 12,000 people.