Monday, May 01, 2006

Let's Roll, Not Let's Rollover

Let's Roll, Not Let's Rollover

I got an email message from Rep. Charles Taylor regarding a request for funds he received for the memorial of Flight 93 project in Pennsylvania. He said he approved a 50/50 plan to match funds with Pennsylvania in the amount of $12.5 million dollars some 3 years ago and so far $2 million Federal tax dollars has been spent in the 'design and thinking about it' stage.

He also said “The memorial committee has now submitted a plan calling for the purchase of 2000 acres, an area three times larger than Arlington National Cemetery, and a variety of structures which they say could cost some $60 million. Realistically, it could cost between $75 million and $100 million.”

The rest of his email blathers off into typical non-committal political-speak.

2,000 acres?! I can't tell if he's seriously entertaining the ridiculous notion of spending $100 million for a cow pasture or if he's trying to diplomatically say he's planning to rein in the numbers to a more acceptable amount.

He closes with “Our Fiscal Year 2007 budget has not yet been marked-up by either the House or Senate. In it, however, we will ensure that the passengers and crew of Flight 93 - who sacrificed all - will receive a lasting tribute to their memories and the values of freedom and liberty for which they stood.”

Rep. Taylor also mentioned in the message that the World Trade Center projected cost is in the $500 to $800 million dollar range. Another outrageous boondoggle.

I don't mean to belittle the victims of 9/11 or their families in any way. And yes, I believe there should be a suitable tribute to them, something to help Americans honor and remember them and also what happened that day.

But these exorbitant amounts being considered are absolutely insane, even if the Federal government is only picking up half the tab.

In a day when Washington is operating deep in red ink, President Bush wants to sell off National parks to pay some bills, and we have continuing budget problems in getting adequate armor and supplies to our fighting forces, at a time when the Fed won't loosen their grip on the 18 cents of taxes per gallon of gas (Exxon, et al make about 10 cents), and we just can’t seem to muster a buck to build a wall against illegal entry into this country, I just don't think spending these huge amounts of tax dollars in this way is very smart.

This all comes down to pork-barrel politics and Pennsylvania and New York are obviously taking advantage of the opportunity to take a long drink at the Federal trough.

This has got to stop.

I hope you'll join me in telling your elected officials to turn off the money spigot on projects like this. Enough is enough already.



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