UP IN SMOKE- THANK YOU-CONGRESS

I ran across an article on the web ( we all should trust the web) well anyway this article caught my attention. I have to share this because it shows how STUPID and WASTEFUL our government is. They really do these things just to make us taxpayers crazy. We all understand how politics work these days it is hard to pass bills without any hidden items to appease lobbyist. (We should trust our elected official to do what the public wants right?) So really BLOW-JOBS WON’T WORK ANYMORE.  This is going to be a little long but bear with me I think you will enjoy it. Now I must confess I have acquired COPD and EMPHYSEMA  which is a lung disease that causes you to not be able to catch your breath. Like the commercial where the elephant sits on you ( it really feels that way sometimes). Well there is no cure , what is the major cause  of  this is SMOKING and I think it was 1962 when i started. I stopped smoking in 1998 WOW 36 years. 18 years clean.  Now I want you to know where a little amount of tax dollars go.                                                                                                    

  US Dept of Agriculture in North Carolina and other states. Uncle Sam just cannot kick the habit. Taxpayers continue to subsidize the leading cause of death of Americans. While it costs billions to treat smoking-related health problems, the federal government is spending nearly as much to support the habit as it is to prevent it. Smoking cigarettes causes one in five deaths in the United States, making smoking the nation’s leading preventable cause of death.178 More than 480,000 deaths every year are attributed to smoking—more than the total number of fatalities caused by motor vehicles and firearm injuries, drugs and alcohol use, and HIV/AIDS combined.179 Treating health problems caused by smoking costs the federal government more than $90 billion a year.180 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has spent about $230 million on national anti-smoking ads since 2012 and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) launched its own two year, $230 million anti-smoking campaign in 2014.181 The National Institutes for Health (NIH) also spends money on projects to try to convince smokers to quit, such as the hipster parties profiled in entry #4 of Wastebook 2015. The Obama Administration exempted tobacco subsidies from across-the-board spending cuts required by sequestration. 31 Yet, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has spent more than $1.1 billion over the past two years to subsidize and support the tobacco industry.182 The bulk of this was spent making the final direct income support payments to tobacco growers in 2014. USDA expended more than $119 million to support the tobacco industry in 2015.183 This includes more than $69 million for direct income support payments and $385,000 on administering those payments. Other amounts include: $45 million by the Risk Management Agency for crop insurance, $58,000 by the Agricultural Marketing Service for “market news reporting (collection and dissemination of auction market process and sales volume data),” $261,000 by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture on research, and $110,000 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service for tobacco crop condition, yield and production data collection.184 As of July 1, 2015, payments could no longer be requested from the Tobacco Transition Payment Program (TTPP). These “buy out” payments were being made to those who previously received federal support from the tobacco marketing quota and related price support programs that were repealed in 2004.185 Unlike other federal programs which have been subjected to sequestration, the Administration took the unusual step of exempting these tobacco payments from the mandatory across-the-board cuts even though the USDA Secretary acknowledged “funding for the TTPP is sequestrable.”186 It originally had “determined that sequestration applies to these payments.”187 The USDA Secretary stated that under the law “all budgetary resources are sequestrable unless exempt by the statute,” noting “no provision” of the law “exempts the TTPP from sequestration.”188 The Administration then “reversed that decision” after some members of Congress lobbied for an exemption.189 To get around sequestration, USDA simply delayed the full payments that would have otherwise been made the following year. In a letter to then-U.S. Senator Kay Hagan, the USDA Secretary explained the “funds sequestered in FY 2014 will become available in the beginning of FY 2015 to complete the final payment.”190 If it had been applied, sequestration could have cut $390 million in tobacco payments, according to the North Carolina Farm Bureau.191 To achieve those required savings, deeper cuts had to be made instead to other federal programs and missions, like national defense and disease prevention, as $119 million went up in smoke.smoke

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