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NASA spent $390,000 on a campaign to promote Green Ninja, a superhero the agency used to educate children about global warming and tell Americans what not to eat. (Screenshot)

Government agencies have been spending like “Mad Men,” dropping millions on national public relations campaigns.

From 2006 to 2015, federal agencies spent nearly a billion dollars on self-promotion.

While their campaigns have come with big price tags, that doesn’t ensure Don Draper quality. Taxpayers aren’t getting much bang for their buck. Often they’re getting shilled. Romina Boccia, a researcher at The Heritage Foundation, explains:

Lack of oversight and vague restrictions mean that many agencies waste taxpayer money on frivolous and inappropriate communication.
For instance, the State Department spent $630,000 to convince people to “like” the department’s Facebook page.
NASA spent $390,000 on a campaign to promote Green Ninja, a superhero the agency used to educate children about global warming and tell Americans what not to eat. You shouldn’t eat steak, according to the Green Ninja, because it is bad for the environment.
The State Department spent $62,098 on cooking videos and online cooking demonstrations.
And who can forget the infamous “Pajama Boy” ad designed to get young people to enroll in Obamacare in 2013? The ad showcased a man in his 20s wearing flannel onesie pajamas. The ad read: “Wear pajamas. Drink hot chocolate. Talk about getting health insurance. #GetTalking.”

Of course, agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Transportation don’t need to raise their brand awareness. Citizens and business owners already know them by the cost of complying with their regulations. If bureaucrats aren’t popular, they should consider changing their policies, not their PR strategy.

Philip Wegmann is a commentary writer for the Washington Examiner.

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