Federal agencies are spending stimulus money at the rate of $196 million an hour. And they will do so every hour for the next eight months until a September 30, 2010, deadline.
Look at some of the stuff you are buying:
-- $233,000 to the University of California at San Diego to study why Africans vote. Jobs created: 12, but seven of those are Africans in Africa.
-- In Nevada, $2 million in stimulus money built a new fire station, but because of budget cuts, the county can't afford to hire firefighters to work there.
-- Penn State University got $1.5 million to study plant fossils in Argentina. Of 5 jobs created, 2 belong to Argentines.
-- Researchers the State University of New York at Buffalo got $389,000 to pay 100 Buffalonians $45 each to record how much malt liquor they drink -- and how much pot smoke each day. Consumption is then reported via an automated phone hotline. Cost per job: almost $200,000.
-- The Obama administration is spending $5 billion to weatherize homes. But one Texas county spent $4 million to weatherize just 47 homes. That's $78,000 per house. Each retrofit is supposed to save homeowners $500 a year in energy costs. That means taxpayers will recoup their investment in 156 years, long after the home is probably torn down.
-- Two Arizona universities got almost $1 million dollars so 3 grad students can study how ants work. That's more than $300,000 per job.
-- Companies that raise tropical fish, shellfish, catfish, alligators and even turtles qualify for $50 million in tax money to buy fish food.
-- North Carolina public schools received $4.4 million to hire math and literacy coaches, not for students, but teachers. That's 64 people paid $70,000 each to teach teachers how to teach reading and math.
Then of course from the
-- $6 million in stimulus money to a California contractor under federal investigation for overcharging San Diego for cleanup after the 2007 wildfires
-- A Denver developer received $13 million in tax credits to help build a senior housing complex despite being sued as a slumlord for running decrepit, rodent-infested apartment buildings in San Francisco.
-- Kentucky gave $24 million to a contractor on trial on for bribery.
-- An aerospace company received $15 million to monitor water quality in a Ventura County creek it was already fined for polluting.
I don't know about anyone else but I can't wait for the "job creations" bill to come out.