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Defense budget funds Gallo

Innovation at the trough; the 2007 Pig Book listings for Department of Defense.


The U.S. defense budget gave us the Internet and thermo-nuclear obliteration. For a quick peep at what our tax dollars are up to now, we go to some 2007 Pig Book listings for defense and homeland security appropriations.

We'll skip the $1.2 billion F-22 project and lower our sights to the $1.35 million set aside for the Obesity in the Military Research Program, proving that MREs aren't that bad after all. But to cover its bases, Congress threw in $1.6 million to improve the shelf-life of vegetables.

With wine you dine; hence $5.5 million for the House of Gallo better-late-than-never study of "basic neuroscience and the effects of alcohol on the brain." If that doesn't pan out, there's $5 million in the budget for alcohol breath testers.

And don't try to fake it and take the wheel anyway. There is $12 million to pay the American Trucking Association to recruit and train "highway professionals to identify and report security and safety situations on the nation's roads."

The list goes on: $3.2 million for the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program ($109.1 million since 1995), $7 million for the SA-90 big brother surveillance blimp, and $12 million for the Rural Domestic Preparedness Consortium in Kentucky. The latter protects "citizens living in rural areas by training emergency responder teams" just in case Al Qaeda flies a plane into Bubba's barn.