Friday, June 23, 2006

$180 Million Terrarium

NPR this morning ("Morning Edition," Friday, June 23, 2nd hour) quoted a member of Congress using the "$50 million rain forest in Iowa" as the classic example of earmarks.

If you're interested, I've amassed what I believe to be the most thorough collection of data and commentary on the proposed indoor rain forest for Iowa -- along with links to my own Web commentary and published pieces about it -- at

Go to that site to find the history of the "Iowa Child" rain forest project: originally "The Iowa Child Project" (still the name of its official foundation), then the "Iowa Environmental/Education Project," next the "Iowa Environmental Project" (and occasionally just "The Environmental Project") it has recently been christened "Earthpark."

Its history covers 10 years of unsuccessful efforts to find either money or location -- aside from Senator Chuck Grassley's generous contribution of $50 million of your money and mine.

1 comment:

Nick said...

Here's the quote from the Congressman in the NPR story referred to above:

Brian Naylor: Wisconsin Republican Congressman Paul Ryan, the measure's sponsor, says it [a form of line item veto] will still force members of Congress to make tough choices.

Congressman Paul Ryan: If somebody sticks a wasteful pork barrel project, like a 50 million dollar rain forest museum from Iowa, . . . or something like that, in a bill or a conference report where we, as members of Congress, have one choice: vote yes or no on the entire bill . . . that's wrong. We ought to be able to vote on that 50 million dollar rain forest museum. This [bill] gives us the chance to do that. . . ."

Brian Naylor, "House Republicans Bank on Conservative Base for Elections," National Public Radio, "Morning Edition" [ -- link to "Morning Edition"], June 23, 2006.