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A Whale of a Budget

By Matthew Yglesias on February 1, 2010 at 2:30 pm

"A Whale of a Budget"

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This is probably the funniest proposed cut in the budget:

Exchanges with Historic Whaling and Trading Partners: The Exchanges with Historic Whaling and Trading Partners program provides non-competitive grants to support culturally-based educational activities for Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, children and families of Massachusetts, and (as amended by Public Law 109-149) any federally recognized Indian tribe in Mississippi. Funds are provided only to five museums named in statute and have been awarded to the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians since 2006, rather than making awards based on a competition or merit.

The Department has no reliable performance data on the grantees in this program. The design of the program, non-competitive funding distributed each year to the same grantees, makes it difficult to evaluate effectiveness and circumvents the merit-based process of grant-making at the Department. The program’s narrow goals are more appropriately served with State, local, and private funding.

That’d be $9 million in savings, though I assume that if something this weird exists it has some powerful patrons.

Update

To put this in perspective, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter appears to sell for over $250 million per plane.

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