It seems like only yesterday that The Chicago Jesus and his grasping, tone-deaf WIDE LOAD FLOTUS took separate vacations together to Martha's Vineyard in a stupefyingly display of opulence and insensitivity. That his'n'hers sojourn spawned these little ditties:
"Finding a wave in Martha's Vineyard is almost as hard as finding a job."Well, just when he thought it was safe to go back in the water, up comes Christmas and yet another period for r'n'r after a blistering pace of on-our-dime-campaigning-disguised-as-POUTS tours, golfing, boogeying at the White House, the customary grind of work-and-responsibility avoidance, and the brain-slaughtering slog of, well, ceaseless vacation planning. So, one would think that our adorable first couple would want to avoid the tin-eared, low-rez optics of past time-off missteps, right?
"I'd say after 40 fund raisers, I've earned a vacation."
"Wishing you happy job hunting from sunny Martha's Vineyard."
"Gotta sharpen my game for the next ESPN special."
"I hope I bowl higher than my approval rating."
"Why did that lifeguard call me Jimmy Carter?"
"I shot a 39 on the front nine--matches my approval rating."
"It's hot outside, heading to take a double dip."
"This $50,000 per week estate is wicked awesome."
"One local called me the Bill Buckner of the economy. That's good, right?"
"No Joe, don't touch anything while I'm gone."
"Low polls, high unemployment...life's a beach."
"On second thought, maybe I was wrong about Slurpees."
"Great thing about vacations...don't need a plan."
"Wow, I'm eligible for an upgrade. Boy, I needed that."
"I'll pivot to that whole jobs thing...next week."
"Raining in Martha's Vineyard. Must be Bush's fault."
"Divots: They're shovel ready."
Nah, not to be, old son.
Turns out this little 17-day stay in our 50th state will set us back a pile.
..research shows the total cost for the President’s visit for taxpayers far exceeded $1.5 million in 2010 – but is even more costly this year because he extended his vacation by three days and the cost for Air Force One travel has jumped since last assessed in 2000.And that's our nickel, folks.
The total cost (based on what is known) for the 17-day vacation round trip vacation to Hawaii for the President, his family and staff has climbed to more than $4 million.
The obscene details (if you want to really delve into this) are itemized in a recent Honolulu Reporter article. The biggest chunk is, of course, travel and logistics:
The biggest expense is President Barack Obama’s round trip flight to Hawaii via Air Force One, a cost the GAO office estimated at $1 million in the year 2000. Contacted today, the GAO confirmed there is no report the independent office affiliated with Congress has prepared since 2000 to operate Air Force One and Air Force Two. However, the U.S. Air Force provides the most current numbers of $181,757 per flight hour. Travel time for Air Force One direct from Washington D.C. to Hawaii is about 9 hours or $1,635,813 each way for a total of $3,271,622 for the round trip to Hawaii and back.And, no, it seems they did NOT sidestep one of the more serious gaffes attributed to their Martha's Vineyard outing:
The cost for USAF C-17 cargo aircraft that transports the Presidential limos, helicopters and other support equipment to Hawaii was not made available. However, the flight time between Andrews Air Force Base and Hawaii is at about 21.5 hours round trip, with estimated operating cost of $12,000 per hour. (Source: GAO report, updated by C-17 crew member). The;United States Marine Corps provides a presidential helicopter, along with pilots and support crews for the test flights, which travel on another C-17 flight. That is $258,000, not including costs for the 4 to 6 member crew's per diem and hotel.
Mrs. Obama’s early flight to Hawaii costs about $63,000 (White House Dossier), but add security and personnel for a total of about $100,000.This is getting to be a nasty habit. I mean, she can't wait around the palatial White House for her husband to finish up the work he has been so studiously avoiding? What's the all-fired rush to convey her ample ass out to beyond where the sun sets?
Look, I know we're supposed to be respectful and all that, but if Moose-Chelle keeps booking these separate flights, I'm gonna keep throwing a flag on it and start stirring up speculation that maybe when she flies with any contingent, there are weight and balance issues with Air Force One.
So looks like as we hunker down in our freezing garrets and basements, heating up our gruel over a candle, and spending hard-earned farthings on modest gifts for the third meager Yule Season under this blithering incompetent, we'll be treated to pictures of him and The Moose out there living the high life and the glistening man-boob pictures as he emerges from body surfing at Makapuu.
I hope a shark gnaws his noodle off.