What’s another 4.5 billion?

It’s For The Children™.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said this week that Democrats are hoping to pass a child nutrition bill before lawmakers leave town for the August recess.

The $4.5 billion proposal, sponsored by Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), would expand eligibility for school meal programs; establish nutrition standards for all foods sold in schools; and provide a 6-cent increase for each school lunch to help cafeterias serve healthier meals.

Ok, so someone explain to me why we give free lunches? Guidelines for eligibility can be found here. Are you telling me parents can’t throw a PB & J and a piece of fruit in a bag for their kid?

Add in the increased amount of“plate waste” of those that receive free lunches versus those that pay full price …

But, at the base of this argument is the conflicting argument that these kids would starve without free meals at school, but that they are getting too fat. Starving kids, from my limited knowledge, don’t get fat.

And then, of course, is the financial waste:

The school-meal initiative has become a typical government welfare program, riddled with fraud and waste. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) inspector general found that 69 percent of those applying for free meals in New York City in 2002 underreported their income to meet the requirements. The bogus eligibility claims added up to $700 million in 2006. Schools and food-service providers are also in on the scam, overbilling the federal government to the tune of $400 million. As an example of this fraud, an inspector general investigation found there were 241,852 more meals “served” in Philadelphia schools than there were students attending class.

But, let’s add in another 4.5 billion to the program to rescue those kids from starvation obesity.

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