Over $22 Million In Stimulus Money Sent To Inmates & Zombies

Who says prison inmates have it tough? First came the report that a handful of cons had scored $9 million in home buyer tax credit, now we read that millions more in stimulus money was sent to our nation’s incarcerated.

According to a report from the Social Security Administration’s Inspector General, stimulus checks for $250 each were sent to 17,000 prison inmates, for a total of $4.25 million.

Meanwhile, the undead have done pretty well for themselves to — considering the whole lack of a pulse thing — with 72,000 stimulus checks being handed out to folks who had already shuffled off this mortal coil. If you don’t feel like doing the math, that’s $18 million in stimulus money that was distributed to those who can no longer be stimulated.

72,000 stimulus payments went to dead people [AP]

Thanks to Michael for the tip!


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  1. fsnuffer says:

    Hey! Dead people vote too. At least here in Cuyahoga County, Ohio.

  2. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    The vampires, werewolves, and banshees probably aren’t too happy they were exempt from stimulus money. The Easter Bunny got his and bought a Faberge egg.

  3. jessjj347 says:

    What’s so bad about the incarcerated receiving stimulus? When they get our of prison, they’ll be pretty hard-pressed for resources…

    • LenVesper says:

      Because the stimulus is supposed to stimulate the economy ‘now’, not in five-to-ten. There’s no reason for an inmate to benefit from the stimulus, when they still have a debt to society to pay.

  4. Pooterfish says:

    But on the plus side, it was probably no less effective than the money that went to living, non-incarcerated people.


    Seriously, while I question the value of the stimulus program, this is no different than what happens with any other large government program. Any time there’s money going out, there’s going to be inefficiency, error, waste, and fraud.

  5. jshier says:

    If they’re dead, what does it matter? It’s not like they’re cashing the checks…

  6. apple420 says:

    I’m sure the $18 million would have been better spent redoing street signs in NYC a couple times.

  7. jshier says:

    And this is yet another reason why we need to have a unified national database for our citizenry. The only reason this type of thing happens is because the data can’t get to where it needs to be, due to the fact that it’s in a completely separate system. Yet ironically, the same people who complain loudest about screw ups like this are those who oppose any sort of unified national database of any kind. What do you expect when you explicitly prohibit the solution to a problem?

    • hansolo247 says:

      Because a National database, while it may do some good things, will do inherently more bad things.

      Government abuses power. Government agencies have immunity from all laws.

    • apd09 says:

      The company I work for offers a service called Deceased Processing where we have access to lists provided by the social security administration to remove names from mailing lists where the person is deceased.

      A lot of fund raising companies like to mail to deceased family members because if the person donated while alive the family will want to keep their memory alive through donations where as a credit card company has no reason to solicit a dead person.

    • RandomHookup says:

      Maybe the credit bureaus can maintain it?

    • gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

      who’s to say that a national database would be 100% “clean”?
      that is to say, there needs to be some way to add people to the national registry. can you trust 100% of the people doing the adds?

  8. Joe-TFW says:

    Zombies were people too. Better them than those rickety ole mummies.

  9. Snowblind says:

    Damn Republicans!

  10. iambeaker41 says:

    So… Is this why the vampires and werewolves fight each other? Vampires get stimulus checks while werewolves get nothing? If so, I might be interested in the Twilight series.

    • Scarficus Rex says:

      Yes. Twilight’s story is very much accounting-centric, which is why it was pretty much THE bestseller for CPAs.

      “Bella, we need to talk.” Edward’s eyes were yellow. The sort of topaz-like yellow that only appears when he has been reviewing Subchapter S code. My heart sank, and before he even said it, I knew what he was going to say. “For the 2010 tax year, we will be unable to deduct tarifs paid on imported honey seed. Furthermore, I was looking over our K1 from Dynacorps, and I think Gregory has made a grave error in choosing amortized depreciation of capital assets for this quarter, and this is going to come back and bite us in 2012.”

      I could tell he was worried. I could tell there was more. “What is it, Edward? Please don’t shut me out!” If his face could turn whiter, it would have. “There are discrepancies on your 2008 return.” I felt like there was a huge hole in me where my soul used to be. I choked back the tears and said, “can’t we file an amended return?” He stared at me, and placed a cold hand on my shoulder. “Bella,” he started, but then stopped. After what seemed like forever, he found the courage to say it. “Bella, we can file an amended return, but I’m worried about attracting attention from the IRS. I think we have a valid argument about why we can deduct your clothes as a home office expense for 2010, but it’s not a fight we want to have right now, but that’s exactly what we’ll have to do if we amend your 2008 return.”

  11. junip says:

    This makes me wonder how many people die on an average day in the US. According to a quick google search, it’s about 6,744. So if it took the gov’t about 11 days or more between populating the list of recipients for these checks and getting them into the mail, than that 72,000 kind of makes sense.

    • RandomHookup says:

      It’s really not that big a number when you consider the issues around large systems. And half of the 72k payments were sent back.

  12. evilpete says:

    Why doesn’t the IRS track / flag returns of those that are incarcerated?

    Social Security does, most state retirement systems.

    • TehLlama says:

      Why would the IRS waste resources on this when it’s obviously a higher return to spend money and resources harassing anybody with real income in hopes of making real money off them, instead of worrying about already spent federal funds that have the same oversight we’ve come to know and love.

  13. peebozi says:

    i’d rather that money go to inmates and zombies then to a bank.

    or shit, just give me a few billion dollars for just one year, at 0% interest like the banks receive, and I’ll donate 18 million, in one year, to “the human fund”….and I’ll pay back the original loan!

  14. HootieMac says:

    To be fair, I’d rather give the zombies some of my money than my delicious, juicy brain.

  15. cmdr.sass says:

    Why say inmates & zombies when you could have just said Democrats?

  16. AT203 says:


    The mis-payments accounted for 0.2% of the total program, and much of that was recovered. Getting a higher rate of accuracy may have meant more upfront labor costs, costing more than would have been saved. Numbers are a funny thing.

  17. econobiker says:

    And now the lobbyists for the “Right to Life After Death” fringe will come out of the woodwork saying that the living dead need representation too…

  18. SonicPhoenix says:

    Meanwhile, I filed my taxes in March and have yet to receive my FTHBC refund.

  19. bschaa00 says:

    And they want to run health care? OYE and HOLY SH!T the govt is a collassul (sp?) F UP!

  20. bschaa00 says:

    And they want to run health care? OYE and HOLY SH!T the govt is a colassol (sp?) F UP!

  21. bschaa00 says:

    And they want to run health care? OYE and HOLY SH!T the govt is a colassol (sp?) F UP!

  22. Mogbert says:

    I don’t know about inmates, but the dead generally don’t cash checks, which means the money didn’t actually go anywhere.