CBS News reported on December 9 that Senators John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) have determined that at least 15 percent of the $217 Billion dollars spent through November in the economic stimulus package has been pure waste. The list of dubious projects funded by federal stimulus funds includes some odd uses of tax dollars. These included $219,000 to study the "hookup" behavior of college coeds and $389,357 for people to keep journals of their malt liquor and marijuana use. Funding was also provided to renovate martini bars in Missouri and to conduct fossil research in Argentina.

TSA officialThe Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has placed five employees on administrative leave pending the results of the agency’s investigation of how a confidential passenger-screening manual was posted online without proper redaction of classified information.

ObamaPresident Barack Obama accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway, on December 10, adopting a self-effacing attitude during his acceptance speech as he said, “I receive this honor with deep gratitude and great humility.”

airport securityDepartment of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano stated on December 9 that her department is investigating how a version of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) passenger-screening manual was posted online.

passportDuring last year’s presidential campaign, then-candidate Barrack Obama made a now-famous gaffe when he referred to his having visited 57 states during the campaign — a tour which included New Mexico. But residents of New Mexico may be wondering whether they are still a part of the union of these United States.

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