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How to spend Obama's money?

In an effort to show federal employees that he feels their pain over pay cuts and furloughs brought on by the sequestration process, President Obama announced last week that he would return 5 percent of his presidential paycheck to the U.S. Treasury.

Since the president pockets an annual paycheck of $400,000, not counting perks and income from books, the U.S. Treasury can expect a White House mini-tithe of $20,000 this year.

Democrat that I am, I've already figured a number of ways to spend it. Using the most recent cost/purchasing data to be easily found on the Internet, I've come up with the following $20,000 social welfare, or Obamafare, purchasing possibilities:

Big 12 Equalization Initiative -- Buys six hours of Predator drone flying time, at $3,234 per hour, to assist the WVU football program in scouting opponents' strengths and weaknesses -- and opening holes in their defensive lines.

The Robert C. Byrd Memorial Monongahela National Forest Comfort Station -- Installs a large U.S. Forest Service-approved pit toilet on a concrete pad ($15,000), two recycled plastic ADA-approved hexagonal picnic tables ($918 each) and five bear-proof trash barrels ($500 each) at a pullout off Williams River Road.

Southern West Virginia Stimulus Plan -- The level of support the president received from this region may have played a role in a $20,000 economic development pilot program that allows 3,333 motorists to exit the state toll-free one way on the West Virginia Turnpike/Interstate 77.

Carbon Sequestration Sequestration Plan -- Send a coal state delegation of Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, on a two-week fact-finding trip to study the viability of a carbon capture test project in coal-rich, protester-free Antarctica aboard the cruise ship Sea Spirit ($6,990 each) with onboard musical entertainment by the Judds ($6,000) and a 14-day supply of Dramamine ($20).

Winter Safety Slush Fund -- Locks in late season price of $40 a ton to buy 500 tons of rock salt to de-ice West Virginia highways during the winter of 2013-14.


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