Perhaps we’ve seen so much corruption that it’s hard to imagine a government program without at least SOME fraud attached to it.
Every time we pick up another rock, we see where taxpayers’ money has been wasted, used for bribery, or just plain lost.
It’s getting really tiresome.
We’re not saying every government agency is riddled with corruption, or that private businesses are without fault.
Yet the fact remains that when the profit motive is removed, as is the case with government entities, much of the motivation for the efficient use of funds goes away. In its place we find real political goals.
An example of massive waste would be the failed “Obamaphone” program, which wanted to make very basic telephone service available to the poor so they could call for emergency help.
But a recent investigation has shown this to be the epitome of everything that can go wrong with government programs.
In other words, it unfortunately illustrates why there is so much cynicism about the ability or willingness of government agencies to generate the results that were promised.
“A three-year investigation into the controversial Lifeline Program, requested by Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO), says some 10.6 million Americans have an Obamaphone and more than 3.8 million or 36 percent of them may not be eligible.
GAO investigators sampled the program’s population and found that it had been paying for nearly 6,400 phones for people whom the government has listed as deceased; another 5,500 people were enrolled for two phones, and another group of people couldn’t prove they were eligible to receive their free phone.”
So, 6,400 dead people have been receiving free telephone benefits from the government. Fantastic.
All joking aside, this is pathetic. Clearly, this program has never had an oversight committee, or the overseers have been in on the game.
“The three-year GAO investigation found that the program has put away more than $9 billion, as of September 2016 outside the Department of the Treasury in a private bank account.‘
“A spokesman for FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who had already put the dubious program under review, said the ‘GAO report confirms that waste, fraud, and abuse are all too prevalent in the program.'”
While it’s heartening to know the GAO is on the job, it seems odd that it has taken that government agency three years to figure out that the government was running a “phones for corpses” program.
Sometimes it’s difficult to take these people seriously, isn’t it? If any private company was run this way, it would either be bankrupt or their executives would be charged with fraud.
Plus, it turns out that perhaps there were some political motivations for this, which would mean we would be substituting a bit of corruption for incompetence.
“In an April interview on Fox Business Network’s Varney & Company, Commissioner Pai said he was told to keep quiet about potential fraud in the Obamaphones program.“
Dare we say it? Just pull the plug.