From The Washington Times:
The Department of Veterans Affairs has struggled to find enough money to deliver health care to veterans in a timely fashion but managed to spend some $40 million on artwork at its clinics — just one example of the bum decisions that Sen. Jeff Flake highlighted in this year’s “Wastebook.”
The Arizona Republican, picking up on the project of retired Sen. Tom Coburn, highlighted more than $100 billion in federal spending that he said the government wasted on bad decisions.
Among them were $7,000 that the Institute of Museum and Library Services sent to the Mattapoisett Free Public Library in Massachusetts to help it recommend good books to its patrons, and $1 million spent by the National Institutes of Health to put 12 marmoset monkeys in hamster exercise balls and roll them on a treadmill to monitor their heart rates.
“While primate research can further scientific understanding, this is the kind of monkey business that makes taxpayers go bananas,” Mr. Flake joked in the report.
More serious was the federal financial aid program, which two students in Minnesota used to buy tickets in an attempt to go abroad and join the Islamic State. Neither student managed to leave the country, but they spent $2,000 in education funding on their tickets.
Unlike a similar missive released Nov. 30 by Sen. James Lankford, Oklahoma Republican, Mr. Flake’s report did not propose solutions to the wasteful spending but instead suggested that some projects should not have been funded at all.
Mr. Flake is…