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The Government Racket 2000:
Bestselling author Martin L. Gross updates one of his most popular books, The Government Racket, with The Government Racket 2000. Eight years after his first book, readers won't be shocked to learn that Washington keeps wasting taxpayer dollars. Gross estimates that the federal government fritters away at least $375 billion annually on questionable programs and projects, such as the National Swine Research Center ($13 million), a study on mail-delivery times ($23 million), and the Robert J. Dole Institute at the University of Kansas ($6 million). The book reads like a lengthy newspaper op-ed, full of short paragraphs, colloquial language, and pithy observations. By and large, his recommendations will sound like common sense to those who crave a smaller government or those who just want to know why the Pentagon recently spent $5 million to build a third golf course at Andrews Air Force Base, just outside the District of Columbia. Though Gross sometimes expects readers to be outraged without fully explaining why (he never reveals, for instance, what the National Swine Research Center actually does), he offers some solutions to the problems he cites: cutting the federal cabinet from 14 departments to 9, shutting down entire agencies, and revamping U.S. tax policy, among others. The Government Racket 2000 is like the report of a government-wide inspector general committed to reducing the size and scope of the federal bureaucracy. --John J. Miller [via]