Posted By RichC on August 26, 2013
Wasteful government spending is nothing new, nor is the corruption and abuse by companies and recipients siphoning off our hard earned tax dollars. What is new is a much bigger federal government and the addition of bunches of new programs and the seeming disregard for responsible oversight that comes with a “bigger government.” It is truly sickening. I have difficulty understanding the lack of outrage or any serious campaign making elected officials accountable for this wasteful spending and abuse?
Here’s an example : In 1984 the Federal Communications Commission created a program to be sure impoverished Americans had telephone service. The program is referred to as the Lifeline program and is managed by the FCC. Under the Obama administration the program moved from land based home phone services so that families could call 911 or connect with their schools or employers, but added cellphones. With little oversight and profiteers taking advantage of Uncle Sam’s generosity “with your money,” the 2008 budget of $819,000,000 dollars ballooned to $2,200,000,000 (that’s BILLION) in 2012 … and shows little sign of being reeled in.
According to Jillian Kay Melchior’s investigative article detailing the abuse in National Review earlier this month, there are now 13.8 million active Lifeline subscribers … many which have multiple phones!
Representative Tim Griffin (R., Ark.) has long opposed the Lifeline wireless subsidies, making it a pet cause. He reiterated the basic point I had learned from this experience: The problems began when the federal government got in the business of providing free cell phones, and the FCC’s recent reforms aren’t sufficient.
“I saw all the horror stories of people getting 10, 20, 30, 40 phones,” Griffin says, “the [wireless] companies not paying a lot of attention and in some cases no attention to who was getting them and whether they were getting duplicates.”
And if you’ve been wondering why the companies are so eager to hand out free phones, the incentive is built into the program. As Griffin explains, “Of course, the way the program was set up, [wireless companies] were getting money for every one they could give out, so they gave out as many as they could.”
And still do. *
* Emphasis by me.