40 Obvious And Painless Ways For The US To Cut Its Budget

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The U.S. government is one week away from the sequester deadline, when $1.2 trillion of across-the-board spending cuts will go into effect. The budget slashing is set to hit everything from NASA to food inspectors, and members of both parties are alternately playing the blame game and trying to come up with a solution to avoid the cuts. 

Still, it’s worth noting that there are some things the government spends money on that could definitely go. 

Each year, the conservative Heritage Foundation combs through the budget and points out some particularly egregious expenditures and redundancies.

Here are 40 cuts they’ve identified that the government can totally afford to make. 

[slideshow]
[slide
permalink=”the-government-wasted-1153-billion-in-improper-payments-paying-money-either-to-the-wrong-person-in-the-wrong-amount-or-for-the-wrong-reason-1″
title=”The government wasted $115.3 billion in improper payments, paying money either to the wrong person, in the wrong amount, or for the wrong reason.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a5d569bedd495b000055″
caption=””
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[slide
permalink=”amtrak-lost-845-million-having-food-and-beverage-services-a-total-of-8338-million-in-10-years-it-has-never-broken-a-profit-on-serving-food-2″
title=”Amtrak lost $84.5 million having food and beverage services, a total of $833.8 million in 10 years. It has never broken a profit on serving food.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4d7f93e8cadcbba733010000″
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-conservation-reserve-program-of-the-department-of-agriculture-pays-farmers-21-billion-every-year-not-to-farm-in-order-to-reduce-soil-erosion-3″
title=”The Conservation Reserve Program of the Department of Agriculture pays farmers $2.1 billion every year not to farm in order to reduce soil erosion.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/500829016bb3f7540d00000d”
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-state-departments-diplomatic-culinary-partnership-program-pays-for-80-chefs-to-prepare-food-for-visiting-officials-and-engage-in-american-culinary-diplomacy-4″
title=”The State Department’s Diplomatic Culinary Partnership program pays for 80 chefs to prepare food for visiting officials and engage in American “culinary diplomacy.””
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a6406bb3f7915500001d”
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-agriculture-spent-2-million-on-an-intern-program-for-the-office-of-the-chief-information-officer-one-intern-was-hired-5″
title=”The Department of Agriculture spent $2 million on an intern program for the Office of the Chief Information officer. One intern was hired.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a60aecad045766000009″
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-government-spent-17-billion-maintaining-77700-unused-buildings-6″
title=”The government spent $1.7 billion maintaining 77,700 unused buildings.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/51269f626bb3f77a4a000022″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-rural-business-enterprise-program-gave-a-dairy-farm-55660-to-package-its-butter-in-smaller-containers-7″
title=”The Rural Business Enterprise Program gave a dairy farm $55,660 to package its butter in smaller containers.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a6836bb3f78e5700001d”
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-government-accountability-office-found-34-areas-where-federal-agencies-have-overlapping-goals-or-duplicative-services-costing-billions-annually-8″
title=”The Government Accountability Office found 34 areas where federal agencies have overlapping goals or duplicative services, costing billions annually”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/507740c8ecad04415e00000a”
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”there-are-80-economic-development-programs-operating-out-of-four-different-agencies-alone-many-of-these-programs-have-overlapping-or-competing-missions-9″
title=”There are 80 economic development programs operating out of four different agencies alone. Many of these programs have overlapping or competing missions”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a6b3eab8ea3c03000016″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”within-the-department-of-transportation-are-over-100-economic-development-programs-in-five-agencies-in-the-department-of-transportation-alone-10″
title=”Within the Department of Transportation are over 100 economic development programs in five agencies in the Department of Transportation alone”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a6e5eab8ead305000021″
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”seven-different-agencies-have-more-than-20-different-programs-addressing-homelessness-11″
title=”Seven different agencies have more than 20 different programs addressing homelessness”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4f0f6277eab8ea1246000026″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”there-are-44-different-employment-and-training-programs-run-variously-through-the-departments-of-education-health-and-human-services-and-housing-and-urban-development-12″
title=”There are 44 different employment and training programs, run variously through the Departments of Education, Health and Human Services and Housing and Urban Development”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4dff969849e2aebc782e0000″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”-and-there-are-82-programs-on-teacher-quality-between-the-departments-of-defense-education-energy-ans-well-as-nasa-and-the-national-science-foundation-13″
title=”… and there are 82 programs on teacher quality between the Departments of defence, Education, Energy ans well as NASA and the National Science Foundation.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/50f706716bb3f7c30800000d”
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-justice-spent-121-million-hosting-or-participating-in-1832-conferences-in-one-year-14″
title=”The Department of Justice spent $121 million hosting or participating in 1,832 conferences in one year.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/512692acecad049d45000002″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”beef-wellington-made-the-hors-doeuvres-menu-at-one-costing-732-per-serving-15″
title=”Beef Wellington made the hors d’oeuvres menu at one, costing $7.32 per serving”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4f6126f0ecad041654000036″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-most-expensive-doj-conference-was-in-istanbul-and-cost-118-million-16″
title=”The most expensive DOJ conference was in Istanbul and cost $1.18 million.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/51125fc26bb3f77624000006″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-general-services-administration-which-manages-federal-buildings-held-a-822751-conference-in-vegas-to-the-tune-of-2500-per-employee-17″
title=”The General Services Administration, which manages federal buildings, held a $822,751 conference in Vegas to the tune of $2,500 per employee”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4f8c6d6069bedda12e000012″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-veterans-affairs-spent-61-million-on-two-training-conferences-in-orlando-with-50000-going-to-a-video-boosting-human-resources-18″
title=”The Department of Veterans Affairs spent $6.1 million on two training conferences in Orlando, with $50,000 going to a video boosting Human Resources”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/51267913eab8ea3720000005″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”fifteen-different-federal-agencies-are-overseeing-30-food-safety-laws-19″
title=”Fifteen different federal agencies are overseeing 30 food safety laws”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4fa427ad69bedd421e000017″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-navy-bought-450000-gallons-of-biofuel-at-27-per-gallon-20″
title=”The Navy bought 450,000 gallons of biofuel at $27 per gallon”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/50129eff69bedd787900000c”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-irs-stores-unused-furniture-at-a-warehouse-for-862000-annually-21″
title=”The IRS stores unused furniture at a warehouse for $862,000 annually.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4af03700000000000022ba83″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-energy-cannot-locate-500000-worth-of-green-energy-manufacturing-equipment-22″
title=”The Department of Energy cannot locate $500,000 worth of green energy manufacturing equipment”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a71beab8ea5103000012″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-bureau-of-indian-affairs-funded-a-fish-hatchery-that-did-not-hatch-a-single-fish-for-fourteen-years-23″
title=”The Bureau of Indian Affairs funded a fish hatchery that did not hatch a single fish for fourteen years.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a1666bb3f7085100000a”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”after-encouraging-americans-to-do-a-meatless-monday-for-health-purposes-the-department-of-agriculture-later-purchased-170-million-worth-of-meat-from-drought-stricken-farmers-24″
title=”After encouraging Americans to do a “Meatless Monday” for health purposes, the Department of Agriculture later purchased $170 million worth of meat from drought-stricken farmers.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/512693b76bb3f7db3600000b”
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-labor-spent-495000-on-commercials-promoting-an-initiative-for-green-jobs-25″
title=”The Department of labour spent $495,000 on commercials promoting an initiative for green jobs”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126787ceab8ea3620000000″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-veterans-affairs-spent-221540-on-an-11-day-conference-at-a-resort-26″
title=”The Department of Veterans Affairs spent $221,540 on an 11 day conference at a resort.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5123e5cf6bb3f7592b000003″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-departments-of-agriculture-and-energy-gave-a-76-million-grant-for-a-wood-to-ethanol-plant-it-closed-within-a-year-without-producing-any-ethanol-27″
title=”The Departments of Agriculture and Energy gave a $76 million grant for a wood-to-ethanol plant. It closed within a year without producing any ethanol.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a1de69beddca4f000012″
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”a-25000-grant-was-used-to-translate-a-maldivian-love-ballad-28″
title=”A $25,000 grant was used to translate a Maldivian love ballad”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/512695a7ecad04d049000014″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-national-institutes-of-health-spent-170000-over-three-years-researching-the-hookah-smoking-habits-of-jordanians-29″
title=”The National Institutes of Health spent $170,000 over three years researching the hookah smoking habits of Jordanians.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/512696046bb3f70339000019″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-department-of-agriculture-spends-200-million-annually-advertising-us-food-in-other-countries-30″
title=”The Department of Agriculture spends $200 million annually advertising U.S. food in other countries…”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/512680a269bedd837b000014″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”they-recently-funded-an-indian-reality-show-that-advertised-us-cotton-31″
title=”…they recently funded an Indian reality show that advertised U.S. cotton.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126975ceab8ea2562000014″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-epa-spent-141450-funding-a-chinese-study-on-swine-manure-32″
title=”The EPA spent $141,450 funding a Chinese study on swine manure.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a259eab8eaca79000017″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-epa-also-gave-the-united-nations-12-million-to-promote-clean-fuel-33″
title=”The EPA also gave the United Nations $1.2 million to promote clean fuel”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5126a2ddeab8ea067c000010″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-government-accountability-office-found-that-people-who-double-dip-from-unemployment-insurance-and-disability-benefits-cost-the-us-850-million-annually-34″
title=”The Government Accountability office found that people who double-dip from unemployment insurance and disability benefits cost the U.S. $850 million annually.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/510c349269bedd5a34000007″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-top-20-percent-of-farm-subsidy-recipients-received-80-percent-of-all-premium-subsidies-35″
title=”The top 20 per cent of farm subsidy recipients received 80 per cent of all premium subsidies.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5060cff769beddcb2d000008″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”26-farm-businesses-each-collected-more-than-1-million-in-subsidies-36″
title=”26 farm businesses each collected more than $1 million in subsidies.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4d2f183d49e2ae660c1a0000″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-government-lost-528-million-on-an-investment-in-solyndra-37″
title=”The government lost $528 million on an investment in Solyndra…”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4e7cc98769bedd6f1d000000″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”465-million-on-beacon-power-38″
title=”…$46.5 million on Beacon Power…”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/51267d226bb3f7110d000000″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”and-731-million-on-abound-solar-39″
title=”…and $73.1 million on Abound Solar.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4fbcf1ea6bb3f7d016000004″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”among-individuals-making-1-million-or-more-annually-2362-received-unemployment-benefits-in-2009-40″
title=”Among individuals making $1 million or more annually, 2,362 received unemployment benefits in 2009.”
content=”Source: Heritage Foundation
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/500857ca6bb3f7a760000021″
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”now-heres-whats-actually-getting-cut-41″
title=”Now here’s what’s actually getting cut….”
content=”11 Ways The Sequestration Will Ravage The US Government >
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/4fa7d237ecad04132700000b”
caption=””
credit=””
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]
[/slideshow]