Sen. Lankford Singles Out ‘Doggie Hamlet’ in Wasteful Spending Report

doggie hamlet
• November 27, 2017 12:13 pm


One of the top examples of wasteful spending is the taxpayer-funded play "Doggie Hamlet," according to Sen. James Lankford (R., Okla.).

Lankford released his third edition of "Federal Fumbles," a report highlighting wasteful and inefficient spending, on Monday.

"This is Weird, Right? A $30,000 NEA grant supports the production of Doggie Hamlet," Lankford's report states.

"The adaptation does not include any actual lines from Hamlet, is conducted outdoors in a 30-by-50-foot field in New Hampshire, and is mostly humans yelling or running toward confused sheep and dogs," according to the report.

The Washington Free Beacon first revealed the National Endowment for the Arts project last year, which funded a series of dance performances of "conceptual art," including "Doggie Hamlet."

"Doggie Hamlet" consisted of actors running around fields in New England screaming at sheep, and included no lines of Shakespeare. The New York Times defended the taxpayer-funded performance in a 1,200-word endorsement, criticizing the Free Beacon for missing the point that "Doggie Hamlet" was really about "what it means to be a citizen of the world."

"Every American should have access to how their tax dollars are spent," Lankford said upon releasing his wasteful spending report. "I hope every member of Congress, the administration, and staff will utilize Federal Fumbles as they consider budget requests, hold hearings, and discuss reform legislation."

"In the first 11 months of the new administration, we've worked to roll back wasteful spending and a number of harmful and burdensome regulations from previous Federal Fumbles reports. There is a lot of work to still be done.

Lankford added that the 2017 edition of the report is "my to-do list for 2018."

The report says the nation currently holds $20.49 in debt, and ran a $666 billion deficit in 2017.

Lankford identified $473.6 billion in wasteful spending, including over $1 billion spent for just 10 miles of trolley line in San Diego, and $1.5 billion on PR for government agencies each year.