The U.S. government owns 200,000 foreclosed homes. And to keep those empty homes looking spiffy for would-be buyers, the government has to keep up appearances — including the appearance of the lawn. As a result, we taxpayers are forking over $40 million for lawn-mowing at these uninhabited houses.

Now, in the vast scheme of government spending, $40 million doesn’t mean that much. But $40 million just to cater to this weird national lawn obsession feels over the top. Besides, there are so many other options for maintaining lawns! The government might want to look into no-mow lawn mixes, which tend to need little upkeep or chemical assistance and to do better in droughts. Alternatively, we hear that sheep do a great job mowing lawns while saving money. Think about it, Uncle Sam.

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