Best the Budgeteers! Apropos Doug Bandow's article on Reagan's failed budget revolution (see page 39), REASON announces the First Quadrennial Waste, Fraud, and Abuse Contest. Instead of winning a prize for the best guess at how many jelly beans are in the jar, you can win big by most accurately predicting the administration's initial budget request for fiscal 1989.
Back in 1981, Ronald Reagan told voters that Uncle Sam would be spending $760 billion of their tax dollars in fiscal 1985 (Oct. '84–Sept. '85). But when FY 1985 rolled around, he was off by $82 billion. Now he's telling us that 1989's budget will be $1.26 trillion. Here's your chance to find out whether his guess is any better than yours.
First prize will be two complimentary tickets to the Reason Foundation's 20th Anniversary Banquet, expected to be held in the spring of 1988. (The 15th Anniversary Banquet was a lavish affair at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles, with free-market luminaries from across the land; the 20th should be even more dazzling.) Second prize: the sheet music for "Hey, Big Spender."
To enter, send your budget projection, along with your name and address, to Waste, Fraud, and Abuse, c/o REASON, Box 40105, Santa Barbara, CA 93140. Only one entry may be submitted per person. All entries must be received by June 1, 1985.
First prize will be awarded for the Waste, Fraud, and Abuse entry that comes closest to the Office of Management and Budget's initial total budget request, in nominal dollars, for FY 1989 outlays. (It will probably be announced in early February 1988.) Second prize will go to the next-best projection.
Winners will be announced on April 15, 1988. Winners' names will be published in REASON and winners will be notified by mail, but it will be the entrants' responsibility to inform REASON, c/o Waste, Fraud, and Abuse, of changes of address. Ties will be broken by a flip of a gold coin. This contest is void where prohibited, wherever that might be.
Correction: On page 44 of the April issue (in "Congress's Conservative Young Turks"), the captions beneath the photographs of Reps. Bob Walker and Vin Weber were mistakenly transposed. We apologize to the congressmen and to our readers for the error.