Many of us don’t mind paying our share of taxes so the government can create or improve things like roads, schools, and public services that have a positive impact on society. However, sometimes, we find that some of these efforts to “improve society” fall into a grey area, and people begin wondering whether or not they are truly helping to improve anything — or if they are simply a waste of taxpayer money.
In his Wastebook 2013, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) found several government expenditures that could be considered a complete waste of money. While a few of these of these expenditures may have some practical use, one may certainly view some of these expenditures as low priority. When you combine all of the Wastebook items together, these expenses total $30 billion. Some feel this money should have been used to bring forth significant change in other, more needed areas, like education or poverty.
We decided to highlight a few of these instance of “wasteful spending” and pose the question, do you think these programs are useful? Are you happy with our money being spent on these types of initiatives?
1. Government study finds wives need to calm down? — Cost: $325,525
Brace yourselves, ladies, this one is a real doozie. According to the Wastebook, National Institute of Health researchers spent around one-third of a million dollars researching 82 married couples in efforts to evaluate certain dynamics of marriage. They found that “the marriages that were the happiest were the ones in which the wives were able to calm down quickly during marital conflict.”
The Wastebook goes on to explain more of the research: “When couples encounter strongly negative emotional events (e.g., anger arising from disagreements, disappointments, and perceived betrayals) they often fall into primitive, survival-oriented mode of interaction.” Maybe?
The kicker here is the findings pertaining to conflict resolution. The researchers assert that marriages where wives are able to “calm down” have “greater current levels of marital satisfaction for both wives and husbands” and also “greater marital satisfaction over time for wives.”
But, a husband’s “downregulation of negative emotion” (or should we say “calming down”) did not bring about a significant increase in marital satisfaction for the husband or the wife. The Wastebook also says the researchers acknowledge the study has several limitations.