This is beyond karma at this point. Here's John McCain with one of his endlessly repeated, grandpa-at-Thanksgiving, punchline provided, anecdotes:

"We're not going to spend $3 million of your tax dollars to study the DNA of bears in Montana," McCain said earlier this year, referring to a request from Montana for federal money to study the endangered grizzly bear. "I don't know if it was a paternity issue or criminal, but it was a waste of money."

Here's what Sarah Palin brought home to Alaska in pork:

According to a “summary of requests for federal appropriations” posted to her budget office’s website earlier this year, Palin requested millions of federal dollars for everything from improving recreational halibut fishing to studying the mating habits of crabs and the DNA of harbor seals.

Sure, he vetted her. But all this is only really instructive when you listen to Palin on the stump:

“In just three years our opponent has requested nearly one billion dollars in earmarks. That’s nearly a million dollars for every working day,” Palin told a crowd in Lebanon, Ohio, Tuesday. “So as we reform the abusive earmarks in our state our opponent was requesting nearly a billion dollars in earmarks as a senatorial privilege as I was vetoing half a billion as an executive responsibility.”

The DNA of seals?

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.