Looking Back and Looking Forward: The Macroeconomic Outlook
Liveblogging World War II: June 15, 1941

Is Thus a Joke?

Why can't anybody in the White House play this game?

Yahoo! News:

Desert tortoise comes under fire from 'Sheriff' Biden: WASHINGTON (AFP) – As part of the White House's recently launched Campaign to Cut Waste, Vice President Joe Biden says one of his first wasteful spending targets is a website dedicated to the desert tortoise.... In a message on the White House website entitled, "There's a New Sheriff in Town," Biden addressed potential cuts to spending. "And I bet you didn't know that your tax dollars pay for a website dedicated to the Desert Tortoise. I'm sure it's a wonderful species, but we can't afford to have a standalone site devoted to every member of the animal kingdom," Biden wrote in the message also sent via email to supporters. "It's just one of hundreds of government websites that should be consolidated or eliminated."... "This kind of waste is just unacceptable. Particularly at a time when we're facing tough decisions about reducing our deficit, it's a no-brainer to stop spending taxpayer dollars on things that benefit nobody," said Biden.

The site identified by Biden, http://www.deserttortoise.gov, is managed by the Mojave Desert Ecosystem Program, a database about a desert area that spreads into California, Nevada, Utah and Arizona.

"The Fish and Wildlife Service is committed to saving the taxpayers' money. At the same time, we will continue to work with all agencies involved to protect all endangered species," agency spokeswoman Vanessa Kauffman told AFP.

As Duncan Black writes:

Eschaton: Punchlines: Setting out to find wastefraudandabuse in government spending sounds noble enough, but it quickly becomes a punchline because unless you're willing to go after the big ones - intelligence and defense contractors - you turn your effort into a joke by bragging about the fact that you're shutting down websites that cost much much less to leave up there than holding the press conference to talk about them does.