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One of the Decade's Biggest Examples of Wasteful Government Spending

In February we told you that despite nearing $15 trillion in debt - now close to $16 trillion - the U.S. government decided to spend $592,000 last year to figure out why chimpanzees throw poop.

Now we've discovered yet another example of wasteful government spending that has burned up more than $1.5 billion of your tax dollars - with nothing to show for it.

We're talking about the fruitless pursuit of a biofuel known as cellulosic ethanol, surely one of the greatest government boondoggles of the past decade.

Cellulosic Ethanol Production: What You're Paying For

Both Republican and Democratic administrations have showered companies with grants and loan subsidies with the goal of turning materials like wood chips and switch grass into an ethanol fuel that could be used in automobiles.

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Federal Budget Deficit Climbing Dangerously Higher on Continued 2011 Government Spending

On the heels of U.S. President Barack Obama's State of the Union address - during which the commander in chief highlighted the need for investment in innovation - a steep federal budget deficit projection yesterday (Wednesday) showed the harsh reality of the U.S. government's spending spree.

In the Congressional Budget Office's (CBO) economic outlook report, the nonpartisan body estimated the budget deficit would reach $1.5 trillion in 2011, or 9.8% of gross domestic product (GDP). The report cited the Bush-tax-cut extension, low production, and a weak labor market as key factors for reducing revenue, increasing spending and pushing the deficit higher in fiscal 2011.

This year's federal budget deficit is up from $1.3 trillion in 2010 and $1.4 trillion in 2009. The deficits, when measured as a percentage of GDP were the largest since 1945, reaching 8.9% in 2010 and 10% in 2009.

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