Saturday, April 3, 2010

Great Moments in Government Waste and Hypocrisy

I shudder to think how many American politicians and bureaucrats squandered our tax dollars by attending the enivornmental boondoggle in Copenhagen last December, but the behavior of one EPA official is a perfect illustration of how the political elite have no intention of abiding by the rules they want to impose on the rest of us. The hypocrisy of Ms. Jackson is offensive, but her callous disregard for tax dollars also deserves comment. She had free use of "environmentally sensitive" cars, but she rented a car (and driver!) for more than $1,000 per day. Here are some of the sordid details from Pajamas Media.

At last December’s UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ran up a $13,000 bill for conventional combustion engine cars, a private driver, and old-fashioned baggage vans, according to government records. The EPA paid more in two weeks for cars than most Americans make in a month. Lisa Jackson, the EPA administrator, chose to ignore Copenhagen’s readily available crunchy alternatives, like hybrids or algae-fueled vehicles that were available — for free — to VIPs and governments through the Danish Foreign Ministry, or demonstration cars that ran on new green fuels produced by California companies. Jackson rented from the very conventional Avis, and drove around in a 158-horsepower, 16 valve conventional gas-powered Ford Mondeo. The car that Lisa Jackson and her driver used in Copenhagen would have failed the president’s new fuel efficiency standards released yesterday of 35.5 miles per gallon. Her Mondeo only got 25.2 miles per gallon. Copenhagen isn’t Los Angeles, where mass transit is as prevalent as ice storms. All UN delegates received free passes for public transport throughout the Danish capital... Ms. Jackson charged taxpayers $8,732 for a car — and driver — over six days, as she conventionally crawled through traffic congestion in downtown Copenhagen. An additional $3,457 went towards another Ford and at least two vans to carry the delegation’s baggage.

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