Bob Barr

Despite all the hoopla from the Administration and its media shills about how wonderful it is that a certain, arbitrary number of American citizens have “signed up” for ObamaCare by particular benchmark dates, the fact remains this federal law is rotten from start to finish. It remains one of those rare pieces of legislation that contains on balance not one positive provision; not a single worthwhile crossed “t” or dotted “i.”

Still, we taxpayers continue to pay billions for ObamaCare’s implementation, even as it forces millions of citizens into healthcare plans that do not meet their needs and into relationships with doctors not of their choice. As the finest healthcare system on the planet unravels and burns because of ObamaCare, our generation’s Nero fiddles and bloviates about how great it is, and how “easy-peasey” it is to become an ObamaCare member, in the childish phraseology of Valerie Jarrett, one of the President’s key advisers.

In the 2013 edition of his annual Wastebook, Republican Sen. Tom Coburn lists the year’s most wasteful government programs, all funded by taxpayer dollars. Some of these programs range from tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars -- such as $390,000 spent by NASA to dress a man in a green costume to teach kids about global warming on YouTube. Others -- like the $65 million in federal relief funds for Hurricane Sandy spent by state and local politicians on tourism-related television ads -- reach nine figures and beyond. The point of the Wastebook is to illustrate by concrete examples the amount of federal waste occurring every day, all across America.

Yet, there is one government program that needs no special attention, and ranks as the most wasteful, ineffectual attempt at federal micromanagement since Prohibition: ObamaCare. The damage wrought by ObamaCare can be measured in many ways: its astronomical economic costs, its negative impact on personal freedom, or the irreparable damage visited on America’s healthcare system. By whatever yardstick one uses, the law is and will be a disaster.

Often, wasteful government programs are limited in their impact to economic loss, such as funding irrelevant scientific studies with no real-world application. Other examples, like the $1.7-billion NSA data center under construction in Utah that cannot keep its equipment from melting down, have serious civil liberties implications that spread the damage far beyond economic costs.

Bob Barr

Bob Barr represented Georgia’s 7th district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 -2003 and as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia from 1986-1990.