Look, anything our government orders, it orders in huge quantities. It's a big government, with way too many agencies and agents. As the Declaration of Independence described King George III (and it fits the current national government), "has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance." If you looked at the quantities of toilet paper that our government orders, and you were of a paranoid mind, you would conclude that the government is taking this "wipe your behind because you are stupid to know how to do it yourself" to its logical conclusion.
I don't know how many police officers the Social Security Administration has, but when I look at the quantity of Medicare fraud and Social Security fraud out there, I would consider 1000 federal agents to handle this would be way too low. Many local police departments expect or require their officers to fire 1000 rounds every three months in practice, and for a good reason: a case of ammo is way cheaper than a civil suit by an innocent bystander who gets hit in a gunfight. A year's worth of practice by 1000 agents would be three million rounds.
UPDATE: For those who find it hard to believe that all these executive branches have a need for armed law enforcement agents: Health & Human Services is often going after some pretty serious crimes. For example, Medicare and Medicaid fraud cases that involve tens of millions of dollars. You don't think some of these crooks might decide not to go peacefully?
MIAMI -- The owner of a health care agency has pleaded guilty for his role in a $60 million home health Medicare fraud scheme.Or this one:
A Des Plaines woman has been indicted for her reported role in what federal prosecutors described was a conspiracy involving kickbacks for Medicare patients, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced on Monday.
Rakeshkumar Shah, 46, of Des Plaines, four others, and a home healthcare agency in Lincolnwood were named in the suit.
Marilyn Maravilla, 55, of Chicago, Junjee L. Arroyo, 44, of Elmhurst, Ferdinand Echavia, 39, of Chicago, and Jean Holloway, 41, of Bellwood, and Shah are accused of paying and receiving approximately $400,000 in kickbacks to themselves, nurses, marketers and others to refer and retain Medicare patients that allowed the Lincolnwood business named in the complaint, Goodwill Home Healthcare, to bill Medicare approximately $5 million between August 2008 and July 2010, according to the press release.
Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2012/08/15/4726861/fla-man-pleads-guilty-in-in-60m.html#storylink=cpy
Or this one:
Dr. Bruckner will pay nearly $700,000 in restitution and will serve up to three years in prison. He and his business also face a mandatory minimum five-year suspension from participation in the Medicaid and Medicare programs.
Dr. Bruckner, who ran a dental office in Bushwick since 2003 and another in Canarsie since 1988, submitted hundreds of false claims to the Medicaid program, according to investigators. The dentist and his company paid recruiters kickbacks to supply him and at least three other dentists with Medicaid patients at his offices.
The scheme occurred between 2007 and 2011; during that time, the majority of patients at those offices were brought in by recruiters. Dr. Bruckner and his business regularly paid the recruiters $25 to $30 kickbacks for each Medicaid recipient they brought in. They were often recruited from homeless shelters and soup kitchens and transported by van to his offices. Dr. Bruckner gave the recruiters $15 to $20 to pay the recipients at the conclusion of their visit.And that's just since yesterday.
UPDATE 2: A reader points me to this depressing but unsurprising article about organized crime and Medicare/Medicaid fraud:
Organized crime gangs are exploiting a new target for illegal profit: Medicare and Medicaid.
Experienced in running drug, prostitution and gambling rings, crime groups of various ethnicities and nationalities are learning it's safer and potentially more profitable to file fraudulent claims with the federal Medicare program and state-run Medicaid plans.
"They're hitting us and hitting us hard," said Timothy Menke, head of investigations for the Office of Inspector General at the Department of Health and Human Services. "Organized crime involvement in health care fraud is widespread."...
Recent cases include crime boss Konstantin Grigoryan, a former Soviet army colonel who pleaded guilty to taking $20 million from Medicare. Karapet "Doc" Khacheryan, boss of a Eurasian crime gang, was recently convicted with five lieutenants of stealing doctor identities in a $2 million scam.
Two Nigerians, Christopher Iruke and his wife, Connie Ikpoh, were charged October 15 with bilking Medicare of $6 million dollars by fraudulently billing the government for electric wheelchairs and other expensive medical equipment.
I'm guessing that private insurers are facing similar challenges.