This just in from the “your tax dollars at work” department…

The Fiscal Year 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education appropriations bill contains 1,016 earmarks totaling $392 million.

Here’s just one of the earmarks:

$1 million for the Museum at Bethel Woods, which is dedicated to recreating the 1969 Woodstock Music Festival experience and will feature “An interpretation of the 1969 Woodstock Music & Arts Fair” exhibit in 2008, according to the museum’s website. The earmark is at the request of New York Senators Hillary Clinton and Charles Schumer.

Recreate the Woodstock experience? How much can it possibly cost to crank up Jimi Hendrix on the stereo, roll in the mud, snort pixie dust and take a dump in the weeds?

The museum was obviously counting on the money, because they even have the shell for a future website up and running, and soon all generations will be able to visit and experience The Summer of Love, complete with all the sights, smells, smells and smells.

I can’t wait until it opens. Expect great exhibits, all on display inside a port-o-san that hasn’t been cleaned in years. I’m looking forward to the “Taxi or Arlo” game. This is where participants will pay $10 to be blindfolded and sniff a piece of material — they then have to decide if that material is from Arlo Guthrie’s shirt, or the seat of a New York City cab. Winners get an autographed copy of Alice’s Restaurant and are entered into a drawing to win David Crosby’s old liver.

Here are just a few of the other earmarks in the inappropriations bill:

$250,000 for the Polynesian Voyaging Society, which includes among its programs making and sailing ancient canoes from Hawaii to Japan. The earmark is requested by Senator Daniel Inouye of Hawaii.

$100,000 for “Lighten Up Iowa,” an online program encouraging people to lose weight while also preaching the benefits of vegan diets. The earmark is requested by Iowa Senator Tom Harkin.

$500,000 for the New York Botanical Garden’s Virtual Herbarium, a project to scan images of herbs and post them online. The earmark is requested by New York Senators Hillary Clinton and Charles Schumer.

$100,000 to fund the celebration of Lake Champlain’s 400th Anniversary – an event that doesn’t take place until 2009. The earmark is at the request of Vermont Senator Pat Leahy.

Robert Novak has more on porkified earmarks we hear little about, for good reason.


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