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I'm hoping some of you who are more knowledgeable might help me dig in to where our future national conversation about the federal budget can target agency departments that bring in revenue through dinging  folks and companies for irregularities.

I know this has been discussed regarding sequester cutbacks of the IRS or Medicare fraud investigations, and obviously the Department of Justice has gotten some pretty big fines from banks. But my question is how to develop a really decent list of areas of the government that could self-fund expansion based on producing revenue.

We've heard of "running government like a business" and we've heard of "law and order" usually in ways we don't like. But as we approach the coming budget talks it seems to me there are a few ways to approach making a positive difference on not hampering agency departments that go after wrongdoers and bring in more money than their department's budget. Shouldn't these be allowed to expand?

So what oversight should departments like that have in order to prevent them from becoming greedy secret police? Also, what positive incentives are already in place for whistleblowers or tipsters? How could this possibly be expanded to include crowdsourcing datasets that have been anonymized? I'll bet there are all sorts of housebound intellectuals with data-crunching skills who would have fun trying to find hidden irregularities if there was a chance they could make $thousands (tax free?).

And there must be some really good nonprofits already doing things like this.

Tell me to just go on the Internet and look up: [WHAT?]. (Please do tell me.)

Tell me it's ridiculous that this sorry excuse for a diary doesn't already include [WHAT?] or link to [WHICH?] other diary.

If nothing else I feel this is a very contrary approach to face spending-cutting conservatives with as we approach the next set of talks. Who are our hunting dogs in the federal government and how should they be permitted to bring game home to our collective federal coffers?


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