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Buck Wasters

Posted Tuesday, January 20, 2009, at 1:48 PM

Your Tax Dollars At Work
We seldom have a reason to visit a US Government office other than the Post Office, but we needed to get Margie's Social Security card fixed as it had her first name misspelled so off to North Platte we went. It was a beautiful day, the temperature said 56 on the banks thermometer, and there wasn't a bit of wind on the day we headed north to visit the SS office.

The office wasn't busy, the folks inside that we dealt with were courteous and friendly, and there was no line of people waiting to be served ahead of us... we just walked right in and took care of business. One thing that caught my eye was the basket of freebies placed on the counter. Magnetic information cards, mouse pads, and lip balm were available for anyone stopping by.

Today is Inauguration Day, and our new President in his first Presidential speech brought up the fact that the Federal Government will be held accountable for their spending, and that programs that don't work well will be removed, and those that do work will be enhanced to work better.

Wasn't it just a few years ago that we were bombarded with stories of the government paying 150 dollars for a hammer? It seems that we read or hear of wasteful government spending every day with a portion of at least one national news cast called "The Fleecing Of America". So our trip to the Social Security office pointed out a couple ways that our new President might cut some spending.

Get rid of the mouse pads and lip balm! I didn't check on prices of mouse pads, but lip balm goes for about 2 bucks a tube. Now to be completely fair, I did a bit of research for prices of lip balm in bulk, and it turns out you can get it for less than a buck a tube. If you are willing to buy over 10,000 tubes of the stuff, you can have it printed with your message (just like the SS tube Margie grabbed) for 79 cents a tube, not including shipping and handling. We can only hope that Social Security is paying bulk rates, but if the government is willing to pay so much for a hammer, how much would they spend on a mouse pad and lip balm?

That got me wondering why someone decided that lip balm was an appropriate message for the Social Security office in the first place, but it didn't take me long to figure out. I did a quick search of what the complaints in the SS office are, and overwhelmingly disability benefits were mentioned. So...

The lip balm must be to cure the chapped lips of those needing disability payments because they have to kiss so much butt to get what they need and deserve? If that is true, I really wonder what the mouse pads are for?

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I don't know, but my mouse got so scared, it tried to jump off my desk. Caught it just in time. Ha

-- Posted by Navyblue on Tue, Jan 20, 2009, at 5:51 PM

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