“CAGW members are an iconoclastic bunch skeptical about politicians' promises.” - National Journal


WasteWatcher is CAGW's monthly dispatch to members of the news media. Culled from dense General Accounting Office reports, obscure news items, and the occasional account of a whistleblower, WasteWatcher's stories captured headlines by transforming the dry matter of federal financial management into side-splitting -- albeit infuriating -- tales of government ineptitude.

The North Carolina Winston-Salem Journal said of WasteWatcher that it is "a monthly publication that probably deserves wider dissemination than it gets...even heavily discounted to allow for the ax CAGW is grinding, the news from its reports is high in shock value and humor (of the gallows variety)."

Bringing Home the Davis-Bacon

By William M. Christian
WasteWatcher, August 2014

                  “Bringing home the bacon” describes earning money for a job performed (i.e., providing the means to purchase basic sustenance).  Therefore, it... more

Irregular Order Comes Back

By P.J. Austin
WasteWatcher, August 2014

When Congress passed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013, it established a topline discretionary spending budget, formally known as the 302(a) allocation, for fiscal years (FY) 2014 and 2015.  Although there were several negative aspects of the budget... more

The Name Game

By Elizabeth Wright
Wastwatcher, August 2014

Biologics are, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), medical products “made from a variety of natural sources (human, animal or microorganism).  Like drugs, some biologics are intended to treat diseases and medical conditions.  Other... more

State Labeling Would Be a Logistical Calamity

By Anderson Haxton ​
​Wastewatcher, August 2014

For the past several years, activist groups such as Food Democracy Now! and Just Label It! have been pushing for mandatory labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). ... more

Bureaucratic Quagmire…Leads to Billions Wasted

By Anderson Haxton

​Wastewatcher, August 2014

A July 9, 2014 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report revealed that in fiscal year (FY) 2013 federal agencies issued an estimated $105.8 billion in improper payments.  The GAO report serves as an alarming example of bureaucratic waste. The puzzling mismanagement of... more

Weird Science

By Colin Gamm

Wastewatcher, August 2014

In John Hughes’ 1985 sophomoric romp, Weird Science, a pair of hormonal high-schoolers manufacture the girl of their dreams with the help of a Barbie doll, a home computer, and a well-timed bolt of lightning.  It was an absurd premise, but if recent grant recipients are any guide, it might be a good candidate for funding from... more

CAGW Files Comments on Net Neutrality Order

By Deborah Collier
Wastewatcher, August 2014

On July 7, 2014, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) President Tom Schatz filed public comments on the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) May 15, 2014 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) regarding net neutrality.

Since it was first made available to the general public, the... more

When it Comes to Ending the Federal Helium Reserve, Congress Is Full of Hot Air

Alexandra Booze
Wastewatcher, August 2014

Turn back the clocks to 1914, when the U.S. government considered using blimps as military aircraft.  It was the beginning of World War 1, and helium, a nonrenewable resource extracted from natural gas first discovered by French astronomer Pierre... more

The Consumer Financial Protection Racket - er, Bureau

By William M. Christian

WasteWatcher, July 2014

The Cambridge Dictionary defines a “protection racket” as “a situation in which a criminal group demands money from a store owner, company, etc. in exchange for agreeing not to harm them:  run a... more

USPS Inspector General’s Foray Earns Ire of Top House Fiscal Watch Dog

By Leslie Paige

Wastewatcher, July 2014

“Mr. Williams, I was madder than hell at your proposal. I think the idea that you’re trying to be the chief innovation officer and promoting banking within the [Inspector General’s] office is reprehensible.  I am shocked than an Inspector General would go from the waste, fraud, and abuse and... more


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CAGW Names Rep. Anna Eshoo August Porker of the Month

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) named House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communication