What's in the Omnibus Bill of 2022?
A Quick Peek
On Tuesday, March 15, 2022, President Biden signed into law H.R. 2471, the “Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2022.” It is also commonly known as, “Holy $%!# The Feds Are Squanderin’ the Loot Act of 2022.”
The bill breezed through Congress as expected. It’s a bipartisan success story in which both your left and right pockets have been picked clean. When the federal government has the power to give themselves a raise, don’t be shocked when they give themselves one hell of a raise.
But what exactly is in the bill, you ask? Well, as the cunning Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, once said,
“But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it, away from the fog of controversy.”
So now it is law. And now we get to find out what our benevolent overlords have bestowed upon us.
In general, this act provides the funding of the Federal government through September 30, 2022, for all its bureaucracies, pet projects, and foreign adventures. I did a little skimming through to highlight what caught my eye.
The final, full bill can be read here. It was reduced down to 1,068 pages from 2,678 coming out of the House. It doesn’t appear much has changed, but the font did get quite a bit smaller.
What Did I Find in the Bill?
DIVISION A—AGRICULTURE, RURAL DEVELOPMENT, FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2022
Title I—Agricultural Programs
I noticed a line item for the “Office of Ethics.” I didn’t realize that such an office existed within the US federal government. Apparently, this office is getting $4,277,000. There are no details of what this money is to be used for, but my guess is that it has nothing to do with ethics.
Title II—Farm Production and Conservation Programs
~$10 billion is allocated for Farm Production and Conservation programs. I don’t understand this never ending flow of subsidies to the farming industry. Farmers are supposed to milk cows’ teats, not suck on taxpayers’ teats.
Title V—Foreign Assistance and Related Programs
~2.5 billion in foreign aid to be managed by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). No comment.
Title VI—Related Agencies and Food and Drug Administration
Pfizer’s buddy, the FDA, is getting a boost in funding this year. But do they deserve it?
Dr. David J. Graham described the corporate culture of the FDA when he testified before the Senate Finance Committee in 2004 about Merck’s withdrawal of the drug Vioxx due to serious safety concerns. He told Congress that he was pressured by his supervisors not to warn the public about dangers of drugs like Vioxx. He was Associate Director for Science and Medicine in FDA’s Office of Drug Safety at the time.
“This culture also views the pharmaceutical industry it is supposed to regulate as its client, over-values the benefits of the drugs it approves and seriously under-values, disregards and disrespects drug safety.”
Keep this in mind in the context of Operation Warp Speed.
DIVISION B—COMMERCE, JUSTICE, SCIENCE, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2022
Title II—Department of Justice
A curious thing caught my eye regarding how to Department of Justice funds itself. The Assets Forfeiture Fund was established (28 U.S. Code § 524(c)(1)) to make funds available to the Attorney General without fiscal year limitation.
This spending bill authorizes ~$20.5 million from that fund for:
payment of awards for information or assistance directly relating to violations of criminal drug laws
payments for equipment directly related to seizure or forfeiture
purchase of evidence of any violation of the Controlled Substances Act or the Controlled Substances Import and Export Act
On page 68 …
ASSETS FORFEITURE FUND, For expenses authorized by subparagraphs (B), (F), and (G) of section 524(c)(1) of title 28, United States Code, $20,514,000, to be derived from the Department of Justice Assets Forfeiture Fund.
Now, call me crazy, but if the Department of Justice funds itself with seized assets, and then uses those assets to seize more assets, then I think the Department of Justice will put its primary focus on finding assets to seize.
DIVISION C—DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2022
Title II—Operation and Maintenance
~$3.4 billion allocated to operate and maintain the Space Force this year. Are they building the Death Star?
And the Army will get ~$300 million to fix areas that they previously destroyed.
For the Department of the Army, $292,580,000, to remain available until transferred: Provided, That the Secretary of the Army shall, upon determining that such funds are required for environmental restoration, reduction and recycling of hazardous waste, removal of unsafe buildings and debris at sites formerly used by the Department of Defense …
~$3.5 billion for buying new Army aircraft, ~$3.5 billion for buying missiles, ~$2.3 billion for buying ammunition, ~$9.5 billion for “Other Procurement,” and ~$4.3 billion for buying new weapons and “tracked” combat vehicles. I guess the tracking feature comes in handy in case their weapons end up in the arms of ISIS again.
Note that all that money I just mentioned is just for the Army. The Navy, Air Force, National Guard, and Space Force get their own money to buy new toys.
Title VIII—General Provisions
Well there’s no doubt the US is fighting a proxy war with Russia. $300 million is going straight into the hands of the government of Ukraine. I’m sure they’ll manage it wisely.
SEC. 8139. … for the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, $300,000,000, … shall be for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative: Provided, That such funds shall … provide assistance, including training; equipment; lethal assistance; logistics support, supplies and services; salaries and stipends; sustainment; and intelligence support to the military and national security forces of Ukraine, and to other forces or groups recognized by and under the authority of the Government of Ukraine, including governmental entities within Ukraine, engaged in resisting Russian aggression against Ukraine, for replacement of any weapons or articles provided to the Government of Ukraine from the inventory of the United States, …
Note that this is just a fart in the wind compared to the amount of money the US is spending on weapons for Ukraine. See below under Division N.
DIVISION E—FINANCIAL SERVICES AND GENERAL GOVERNMENT APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2022
The IRS will get a 6% raise in the name of providing “better taxpayer service.” It pays to be an extortionist. Apparently, they claim they are short-handed. Judging by the nominal value of this bill at $1.5 trillion, I’d say they’re right. Pucker up those butt cheeks, Americans. They’re coming for your wallet.
Of course, we all know that the real source of funding for this bill will come from monetary inflation. Money printer goes “brrrrrr.”
DIVISION N—UKRAINE SUPPLEMENTAL APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2022
~$14 billion is allocated for fighting a proxy war with Russia in Ukraine. This allocation of money is covered widely in the news, so there’s not much more I can say. But, I will point out the obvious: the US government is currently over $30 trillion in debt and is exacerbating a war that could potentially turn very nasty.
The US government claims it “will not fight a war against Russia in Ukraine.”
But apparently, they have no qualms about escalating it through the supply of weapons. Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister, Sergei Ryabkov, told Washington that Moscow will see weapons supply convoys entering Ukraine as “legitimate targets.”
DIVISION V—HAITI DEVELOPMENT, ACCOUNTABILITY, AND INSTITUTIONAL TRANSPARENCY INITIATIVE ACT
“It is the policy of the United States to support the sustainable rebuilding and development of Haiti in a manner that … promotes political stability through the holding of free, fair, transparent, and timely elections in accordance with democratic principles and the Constitution of Haiti …”
More “spreading democracy” throughout the world through welfare and warfare. It never ends well. In fact, it never ends at all. The whole Wilsonian premise of spreading majority rule is silly. Who in their right mind thinks that a majority voting to rule over a minority is a good thing to pursue? Remember that once the Nazis won 51% of the seats in the Reichstag, democracy set Hitler on his path. If anything, the government should be spreading the idea of private property rights. But, of course, they have little respect for such things.
Not to mention the gall of governments that can’t even get their own houses in order managing the spread of “free and fair” elections. This reminds me of the time the European Parliaments Legal Affairs committee had an extraordinary voter turnout. The committee voted 14 to 12 on a copyrights issue. Now, even though the committee had only 23 members present, and only 24 members in total, somehow 26 votes were cast and recorded. Voter turnout was 113%! Extraordinary! The measure won by 3 mysterious votes. Imagine that. Keep in mind that this “precise” group of individuals is responsible for “the interpretation and application of international law, in so far as the European Union is affected.”
And the US government claims it will spread journalistic integrity through Haiti. Ha! Tell that to Julian Assange.
“The Secretary of State shall prioritize the promotion of freedom of the press and freedom of assembly and the protection of journalists in Haiti through … using United States foreign assistance for programs to strengthen capacity for independent journalists and increase support for investigative journalism in Haiti.”
Remember when the Hunter Biden’s “laptop from Hell” hit the news amidst the presidential election? Remember how the corporate press — the CIA’s mouthpiece — dismissed it as fake “Soviet Russian tradecraft” to prevent it from hurting Biden in the election (perhaps there is more to the dismissal attempts)?
Twitter — another establishment lapdog —suspended The New York Post’s account because they broke the story. Twitter even ran a sweeping censorship campaign against the use of the words Hunter-Biden-laptop.
Yeah, well they are finally admitting it is authentic. “Journalistic integrity,” they say.
DIVISION X—INTELLIGENCE AUTHORIZATION FOR FISCAL YEAR 2022
SEC. 404. CLIMATE SECURITY ADVISORY COUNCIL
Did you know that there is such a thing as the Climate Security Advisory Council? Yes. It was created for the purposes of collecting data and conducting analysis on climate change with respect to national security of the United States and its allies. It’s composed of officials from the CIA among other esteemed organizations that have nothing but the utmost credibility (sarcasm, of course). Boy, would I like to be a fly on the wall in those meetings.
SEC. 411. ESTABLISHMENT OF CHAPLAIN CORPS OF THE CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY
This one made me laugh. The CIA is apparently establishing a Chaplain Corps.
The Central Intelligence Agency Act of 1949 (50 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:
ESTABLISHMENT OF CHAPLAIN CORPS.—There is in the Agency a Chaplain Corps for the provision of spiritual or religious pastoral services.
For those that have read Joseph Heller’s, Catch-22, you are familiar with the characters, Chaplain Tappman and his atheistic assistant, Corporal Whitcomb. What a pair! The chaplain is one of the few good characters in the novel that adheres staunchly to his faith. That is, until the horrors of war and the bullying by his assistant and authorities cause the chaplain to have a crisis of faith. He ends up finding out that it is more effective to lie in a mad, mad world than to tell the truth.
“… everyone knew that sin was evil, and that no good could come from evil. But he did feel good; he felt positively marvelous. Consequently, it followed logically that telling lies and defecting from duty could not be sins. The chaplain had mastered, in a moment of divine intuition, the handy technique of protective rationalization, and he was exhilarated by his discovery. It was miraculous. It was almost no trick at all, he saw, to turn vice into virtue and slander into truth, impotence into abstinence, arrogance into humility, plunder into philanthropy, thievery into honor, blasphemy into wisdom, brutality into patriotism, and sadism into justice.”
There is so much more in this bill that I’m sure is unknown to most Americans, certainly to me. I plan to continue skimming and highlighting what I find interesting in days to come. But, for now, I’ll leave you with the words of Douglas Adams: