As a taxpayer there have been three recent scandals that have bothered me.
1) The General Services Administration (GSA) is the federal “watchdog” to make sure other federal agencies don’t misspend or waste money. They were recently busted for wasteful spending themselves, even bragging in videos about how they would never get investigated, since they were the investigators.
Congressional hearings this week and an earlier report from the agency’s inspector general, Brian Miller, revealed numerous cases of extravagant spending and mismanagement.
The April 2 release of Miller’s report on GSA‘s $822,000 tab at a 2010 conference in Las Vegas prompted the resignation of the agency’s top official, Martha Johnson, and the firing of two of her top deputies: Public Buildings Commissioner Bob Peck and Johnson’s senior counsel, Stephen Leeds. Another 10 senior managers and employees were place on administrative leave, and Miller has forwarded his findings to the Justice Department for possible criminal charges.
(Shown Above) Jeff Neely, the federal official at the center of a Wild Las Vegas spending scandal, took the Fifth Amendment before a House committee yesterday after photos surfaced showing him relaxing in a hot tub there on the taxpayer’s dime. Neely, a commissioner with the General Services Administration, orchestrated the lavish $823,000 Las Vegas conference in 2010 that resembled a Roman feast of endlessly flowing, taxpayer-paid booze, sumptuous meals and an assembly line of entertainment jesters that included a clown, a mind reader and comedian
In addition, GSA employees spent a week in Hawaii for a one hour ribbon cutting ceremony. They even made videos about wasting money and how they would never get caught. Their leader posted pictures of his penthouse suite, sitting in a hot tub with champagne, all paid for by us, the taxpayers. They have people who paid around $100 for a hotel room but charged the government $1,000 in reimbursements. And more and more…
2) First lady Michelle Obama’s 2010 trip to Spain cost taxpayers nearly $470,000, according to a conservative watchdog group that obtained Secret Service records from the overseas excursion.
That trip, which the first lady took with her younger daughter Sasha, drew widespread criticism at the time — as the visuals of the first lady in an elegant Mediterranean setting clashed with the still-struggling U.S. economy.
Judicial Watch, which filed a Freedom of Information Act request, claimed Thursday that documents show the trip cost at least $467,585. This is not the first, but only one of many expensive vacations taken by the first lady and the first family. Why are people outraged with the GSA spending $800k of taxpayer money on a trip, but not the first lady spending $470k for a personal vacation to Spain?
3) The Secret Service Scandal. People who are responsible for keeping our elected officials safe are off partying with hookers, at least one in the same hotel as the President would be staying at. I think the count is up to ten secret service folks to be involved so far. They got found out, because they refused to pay the lead hooker $800 (which I admit seems a lot for a Columbian hooker, but I don’t know what all or who all see, um, provided entertainment to). They flashed their badges and tossed her out the hotel room, offering her only $28. She began screaming and banging on the door, hotel security arrived, and voila – scandal.
Dania Sanches, the Columbian dancer/prostitute, age 24, who wanted to get the $800 she was promised for services rendered.
From having served in government, I am SHOCKED by this. The secret service have always been my idols. To allow foreign hookers and booze, (and some report cocaine) in to a place where they can blackmail or overhear plans for the President and Secretary of State Clinton’s visit to a hot bed of violence like Columbia? Unthinkable. Then, I personally theorize that if ten or more are involved, this ain’t the first time this type of thing has gone on.
So my question… Are you upset by 1), 2) or 3)? By all of them? By none of them? If you are upset, which one upsets you the most?
As a taxpayer, I must admit, that even the waste of money does not upset me nearly as much as leaving our President and Secretary of State in a position of danger. Even if everyone who is involved is identified and fired, and they become completely clean and professional, the message has been sent to all who would assassinate or kidnap our leaders, that the Secret Service are vulnerable. This alone might lead some groups to “give it a go.” I do not agree with our current administration’s politics, but that does not matter. It is our President and our Cabinet member, and the whole world needs to know we kick butt and won’t let anyone near them. I am upset by all three, but especially the Secret Service Scandal.