The recent canceling of White House tours in the name of sequester-related cuts understandably has disappointed children and families grousing.
Canceling tours of “the people’s house” saves taxpayers an estimated $18,000 a week, or $936,000 a year.
Putting that figure in perspective, the U.S. federal government has spent more on puppets and puppetry-related expenses than it would cost to fund an entire year’s worth of White House tours.
From 2009 to 2013, the U.S. government has spent $1,188,382 on puppetry-related expenses. Some of the expenses include puppet shows for kids on educational topics. Others include puppet-based research. In 2010, the taxpayer-funded National Science Foundation awarded the University of Central Florida a $199,754 research grant for “Efficient Control and Transmission of Digital Puppetry.”