Party on, GSA, party on

Today, the House began the first day of hearings into the GSA $800,000 extravanza in Las Vegas, on your nickel, of course.  The GSA official in charge of this “outing”, Jeff Neely, refused to answer any questions.  Instead, he asserted his rights under the Fifth Amendment…not that there is anything wrong with that. 

But please click here to have a better understanding of why that pesky Constitution does come in handy sometimes.  In this case, the “after” and “before” pictures of Mr. Neely are illustrative.

But, there is more.  GSA spent $330,000 of your money moving a worker from Denver to Hawaii.  Once nicely settled in Hawaii, the GSA worker quit.  And then,

[t]he House Transportation Committee reported that several GSA officials went to Hawaii for a one hour ribbon cutting ceremony – but stayed there for five to seven days on the taxpayer’s tab. [emphasis supplied]

But, lest you think your money didn’t “trickle down” to those of lesser status in GSA, know that the GSA’s largess applied to their interns as well.

As you heard on Jim’s show today, interns were treated to a “conference” at the Palm Springs Riviera Resort and Spa.  Please click here to see what these poor interns had to put up with. 

But, in government speak, this was a problem.  Interns make very little money, and the government only allows $71 per day for lodging and food when one is traveling on government business.  Ever concerned with the finances of their interns, GSA decided that they would supply “finger food” during the conference so that the interns would not have to use their daily travel allowance on food, but could rather use it all for lodging..  Here is a description of said “finger food” per the Inspector General’s report,

GSA employee: You call it light refreshments. They had pasta. How do you eat pasta with your fingers

IG’s office: Yeah.

GSA employee: They had a carver. How do you pick up prime rib with your fingers? They had oysters on the half shell. Yeah, you can pick them up, but why are we eating that?…

At least, you can sleep well tonight knowing that GSA’s interns are well fed…no doubt, far better than you could afford for yourself and your family.


20 replies
  1. stinkfoot
    stinkfoot says:

    It just makes words about fiscal responsibility ring even more hollow when they ooze out of this administration…. it lays bare the real attitude this government really has about taxpayer’s money and the sense of entitlement they have toward spending it on anything their heart desires and unapologetically demand more when tax revenues fall short of what they were supposedly intended to pay for.? The silence afforded by the fifth amendment right that protected Jeff Neely from self incrimination was deafening.

  2. Marilyn
    Marilyn says:

    Ever wonder why the Federal Gov. doesn’t have a budget?? GSA budget last three years of Bush admin.? 689 million, first three years of Obama’s admin. 3.83 Billion, yep that’s a B.

  3. Plainvillian
    Plainvillian says:

    Isn’t this just our ruling elite at play?? Didn’t the French address similar excesses in the late 18th century?

    • Lynn
      Lynn says:

      Now Plains, that’s not fair. The interns did not have cake. Probably, because that finger food would make their fingers sticky. Whereas Oysters, well better not talk about that!

    • Lynn
      Lynn says:

      Now that I have my speech back, if the GSA can’t do the job they are supposed to do. I say we cut the dept. down to 10 employees and they can stay in Washington and do their jobs! According to their website “Acting Administrator Daniel Tangherlini serves a vital role in President Obama’s agenda to build a more sustainable, responsible and effective govt….GSA is responsible for improving the govt’s workplace by managing assets, delivering maximum value in acquisitions, preserving historic property and implementing technology solutions.”? GSA has failed Obamanably!

      • stinkfoot
        stinkfoot says:

        I like your suggestion… in fact I think the downsizing spirit of it should be “liberally” applied to every committee, sub-committee, department, and every other miscellaneous federal appendage- and whittle the government down to what actually works… THEN we might have something the taxpayers can live with as well as afford.? The corruption has gotten to a point where collective tolerance of it is criminal.? This government deserves to have 300 million watchdogs as its citizenry.

  4. RoBrDona
    RoBrDona says:

    I can never recall a time on Wall Street when any of the firms allowed interns on any junket, as of course these “prizes” are specifically designed to REWARD MAKING MONEY FOR THE FIRM. Apparently in Obama Bizzaro-World the opposite is true. I wonder is this income redistribution in action?

  5. sammy22
    sammy22 says:

    The GSA antics are a disgusting example of misusing tax moneys. The private sector is not much better: junkets by the management teams and lavish “training” extravaganzas are paid for, at best, by the shareholders and at worst by all the purchasers of the products of a company’s product.

    • Lynn
      Lynn says:

      Oh Sammy, You can do better. We have a choice to buy private sector’s products.? If the cost is too high, we buy from another company. However, as tax payers we have NO choice about the overspending. For goodness sake, GSA is supposed to HELP us get better value for our tax dollars. Kind of like the fox guarding the hen house, eh Sammy.

    • ricbee
      ricbee says:

      “Shareholders” have little say in how their money is spent. They used to depend on the integrity of industry leaders but that is absent from most corporate boards in today’s world.

  6. Dimsdale
    Dimsdale says:

    Nothing says “I’m guilty” like repeatedly pleading the Fifth Amendment…
    Sounds like we need to have an example set.

  7. ricbee
    ricbee says:

    There is no doubt that our government has run amok with no regard for the taxpayers. They take care of each other in the most generous way possible,it’s not their money & they don’t have to account for spending it. Morality was probably their only guideline & there is little of that left now.

  8. sammy22
    sammy22 says:

    Leaders in the private sector become leaders in the public sector and viceversa. Are we honestly expecting that they will behave differently as they move from one to the other? And the make the rules to boot!

  9. Lynn
    Lynn says:

    Now you are talking! This is a great point! However, once they go to the Private sector they never, ever go back to the private sector and they make laws exempting themselves from the little people’s rules. Term limits is the solution, but I confess I don’t know how to get that legislation passed.

    • Lynn
      Lynn says:

      LOL just reread mine. Should be “once they go to PUBLIC sector, they NEVER, ever go back to the private sector”…..

    • Lynn
      Lynn says:

      Well, I am one of the little people (4’10” I’m shrinking used to be 4’11”) and I can dream anything I want. I want Term Limits, maybe the sheeple will get smart. How about it Sammy, another Job that the We or Tea can do?

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