from saturday’s letter to the editor: … as always, i’m the bolded italics.
Isn’t it high time for answers about why the midnight oil seldom burns in the Oval Office? (wait, what? i know several washington insiders who can attest that the Pres is constantly at work at all hours of the day and night.) Because we sense a lack of direction as the president travels hither and yon. (? ? ?) Grandstanding in the hinterlands begets headlines, but the public is becoming mighty anxious about whether anyone is minding the store.
President Obama’s 16 trips abroad in 2009 were the most by any first-term president. (good, it’s nice to have a president try to win back some our allies and open discussions with those whom we haven’t been as friendly.) He didn’t sit on his hands at home, either: 58 cities in 30 states. (awesome, it’s great our president is so interested in keeping touch with the American people.) Likewise, in 2010: four trips to the Gulf (how many of those are directly related to the oil spill?), plus 27 visits to commencements, memorials and political assemblages. And the First Lady travels, too. (ahhh, a true family man who spends time with his wife and kids. it’s refreshing isn’t it? and how great that we have a first lady interested in supporting so many great causes in our nation…)
Cost? $68,000 per hour to operate Air Force One, as well as cargo aircraft at $6,960 per hour to transport limos, helicopters, equipment and staff. Not to mention sky-high expenses by cities and states for law enforcement support. By way of comparison, President Clinton’s trip to Asia in 2000 cost the taxpayers $50 million. (ok… travel for the leader of the free world is expensive. understood.)
The figures speak for themselves. With staggering budget deficits, the public would be best served if Obama holed up in the Oval Office now and then and addressed the problems rather than hitting the road on his extravagant and thinly veiled campaign for re-election. (wait, so, you’d rather he take a completely isolationist approach and ignore the rest of the world? welcome to 2010, my dear. that philosophy is no longer an option. and not for nothin’ but president obama seems to be working pretty darn hard to me. between dealing with the oil, working to end several wars, pushing for alternative energy, working on healthcare, creating committees to oversee regulations, helping the banking industry, the automotive industry, working on keeping taxes low, helping americans purchases homes, cars, and appliances, etc etc, i would say he’s doing a pretty banner job so far. what have you accomplished lately?)