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BBC Called Bush Inaugural Too Expensive

From the 20 January, 2005 edition of the (admittedly biased, but always frugal) BBC News:

No expense spared at inauguration

By Kevin Anderson

With an estimated price tag of $40m, the three-day celebration that is President Bush’s second inauguration will be the most expensive ever.

The lavish dinners, parties and fireworks began on Tuesday and will continue through his swearing-in on Thursday, followed by a parade and nine official inaugural balls.

The cost will be paid by individual and corporate donations, while the city of Washington is being asked to pay for an estimated $17m in security costs.

Some have criticised the expense, questioning the propriety of a flashy celebration as US troops are dying in Iraq and South Asia still recovers from last month’s deadly tsunami.

The overt criticism of an inauguration is unusual, but a Washington Post poll found that a majority of Americans would prefer a smaller, more subdued event

While numerous, the number of balls is five shy of the record 14 balls held for Bill Clinton on the night of his second inauguration in 1997…

But with the recent tsunami in the Indian Ocean and the ongoing war in Iraq, some think the expensive inaugural is an inappropriate, ostentatious display.

"Precedent suggests that inaugural festivities should be muted – if not cancelled – in wartime," New York Democrat Representative Anthony Weiner said in a letter to President Bush.

He noted the money could be used to buy 690 Humvees and pay for a $290 bonus for each soldier serving in Iraq.

And city officials in Washington are complaining that for the first time the city and not the US government is being asked to foot the bill for the security operations

Bill Clinton’s first inauguration cost $30m, which was comparable to the inaugural costs of George HW Bush in 1989. His second inauguration cost $23.6m.

But a Washington Post-ABC News poll found that two-thirds of Americans think inaugural festivities should be scaled back. That includes half of those who voted for President Bush and 80% of John Kerry’s supporters

Here is the (obviously objective) question from the aforementioned WP/ABC News poll:

Officials say Bush’s inauguration ceremonies next week will cost about 40 million dollars, nearly all of it coming from private donations. Some people say that because the country is at war, it would be better to have a smaller and more subdued inauguration. Others favor continuing the country?s tradition of large inaugural celebrations. Which of these views comes closer to your own?

Better to have smaller, more subdued inauguration

Continue tradition of large inaugural celebrations

DK/No opinion

Source: A Washington Post-ABC News poll conducted by telephone January 12 – 16, 2005 among 1,007 randomly selected adults nationwide. Margin of sampling error for overall results is plus or minus three percentage points. Fieldwork by TNS of Horsham, PA.

Mind you, Mr. Bush’s inaugural cost less than a third of what Mr. Obama’s will.

And where are all of the polls today, asking whether Americans think inaugural festivities should be scaled back?

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, January 14th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

22 Responses to “BBC Called Bush Inaugural Too Expensive”

  1. Crystald says:

    “And where are all of the polls today, asking whether Americans think inaugural festivities should be scaled back?”

    The acolytes are waiting for the MSM to tell them what to think about the costs of the coronation for the hysterical event.

  2. BannedbytheTaliban says:

    It is ok for Obama to have a lavish inaguration, it is an historic moment. I was confused too, it’s ok. I’m much better now. I attended one of those Obama camps. They let me keep the piece of brain they removed. Now I’m much happier, nothing makes sense, but somehow I think the government will take care of everything.

    • Flession says:

      Big Brother will take care of everything.

    • caligirl9 says:

      I’ve said it before, the history books need good photos of the coronation so they can write new history books and sell ’em at inflated prices to elementary and high school districts, and of course make sure that the proper liberal indoctrination of our nation’s children and young people.

      It’s all about the photo ops, baby!

      When will we see the list of “private donors” who helped pay for this par-tay?

    • Liberals Demise says:

      Don’t forget the pics of the refugees coming across the border for Der Furhers Obamanation. The freeing of the Mexican population from their squaller is in fact…..our squaller but the books will say different.

  3. beautyofreason says:

    Wow – Thank you for posting this article. The hypocrisy of the Democratic party is striking.

  4. Barbie says:

    Obama should give the money to the poor he professes to care so much about.

  5. retire05 says:

    Having attended a number of inaugurations, and being especially glad to attend the last two, I have a few questions about this one.

    I booked my hotel reservations on Nov. 5, the day after the election. The official attendance number on Jan. 20th, 2005 was around 300K. There was not a hotel room available anywhere near D.C. So where are these 2.5 million projected attendees going to stay? A friend emailed me and told me that D. C. was beginning to look like the Green Zone in Baghdad with all the streets, bridges and roads entering D.C. being closed off. So how are people going to get there? How are the trains, and Metro, going to handle that kind of a crowd? They won’t be able to drive their cars in because most of the bridges will be closed and there’s no place to park anyway. And what happens to the million + who will enter D. C. in the days before and don’t have hotel rooms? Is D.C. going to turn into a tent city? Or with the Mystical One wave his magic wand and create hotels where no exists?

    And why all the additional security? Are the D.C. police expecting D.C. to turn into the streets of Watts during the riots? Is it in the mind of the DCPD that there is no way that many liberals can manage to act like civilized human beings?

    • dulcimergrl says:

      My 8th grade son was going to attend the inauguration with a school-sponsored group. We had signed him up back in March, long before we knew the Obamamessiah was coming. We had to cancel the trip for financial reasons, and I thank God every day we did! I would have been worried sick about sending him into that mess! (And we’d sent him on a trip to Australia for 19 days with a group when he was in 6th grade and didn’t have a minute’s concern.)

  6. DW says:

    Here’s a quote from one Stephen Hess, a fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington re the cost of the inaguartion:

    As far as Hess is concerned, Obama doesn’t deserve any criticism for staging grand inauguration festivities in spite of the recession.

    “If anything, Americans need reason to celebrate even more during tough times,” he said.

    “That’s why movies starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were so popular during the Great Depression, just to name one example. People need an escape, they deserve a good celebration, and Barack Obama’s inauguration more than any other gives people a great reason to celebrate.”

    This is from a Canadian Press article:

  7. Lipstick on a PIAPS says:

    How many houses could you stop from foreclosure with $150,000,000 (USD)? How many children could you feed?!? How many non-insured children could you insure? Seems these are questions you can only ax during a Republican Adminstration! Guess we dont have to worry about this crap anymore, DEM in charge! LMAO

  8. caligirl9 says:

    Here is the answer to my “who is donating to pay for the coronation next week.”


    Google ranked as one of the top 10 donors – with seven individuals in the firm donating $175,000 to the event…
    Some of the Californians who have made $50,000 contributions to President-elect Barack Obama’s upcoming inauguration: Halle Berry, actor, Los Angeles; Jamie Foxx, actor, Los Angeles; Berry Gordy, record producer, Los Angeles; Carole Shorenstein Hays, theater impresario, San Francisco; Sharon Stone, actor, Los Angeles; Robert Haas, Levi Strauss, San Francisco; Mitchell Kertzman, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, Mill Valley; Michael Kieschnick, Working Assets Long Distance, Palo Alto; Jason Kinney, California Strategies group, Sacramento; George Lucas, producer and director, San Rafael; Jamie McCourt, Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles; Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, Palm Springs; David and Georgia Osborne, unemployed, Los Gatos; Ellen Pao, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers (venture capital), San Francisco; Kate and Steven Spielberg, Dreamworks SKG, Los Angeles; Steven Swig, Presidio School of Management, San Francisco; John Thompson, Symantec Corp., Woodside; Carol Winograd, Stanford University, Palo Alto; Robert Zemeckis, Walt Disney Co., Burbank; Karla Jurvetson, physician, Los Alto.

    Another question—is donating to the coronation tax-deductible?

    Read the comments at the end of the article if you have time.

    Yes, I live in hell.

    • proreason says:

      Things must be swell in California to see that kind of money thrown around.

      Must not be anybody there who could make use of a spare 50K.

  9. JohnMG says:

    Welcome aboard,caligirl9;

    Just as soon as we get word that California is about to tip into the Pacific, we’ll send a rescue vehicle. You’re too precious to lose.

    By the way, your web site is dynamite. Keep up the good work

    • caligirl9 says:

      Thank you JohnMC! I need to be a bit more prolific in my writings … sometimes it’s just too much to verbalize!

      May I bring my daughter along? She’s just as outraged at “her generation” for so eagerly swallowing liberal pablum. She’s a 6th generation Republican/conservative. I did do something right!

  10. artboyusa says:

    “If erectile dysfunction affects you or someone close to you just dial this toll free number…”

    “Honey? Will you please turn the TV down? I can’t hear myself think”.

    “Hang on, Barack – I just want to make a note of this number” said Michelle.

    “…to find out more about Cialis ™. Ask your doctor if Cialis ™ is right for you. With Cialis ™ you and your partner could soon be enjoying hour after delicious hour of bone-rattling, window-shaking, denture-loosening Old People Sex!”

    “Barack? Where’s the phone?”

    “I’m not aware of its present location and I had no prior knowledge of any use or misuse to which it may have been put. I hardly even know the phone; we just sat on a couple of boards together. Why? You’re not gonna call about …you know. That’s stuff’s too risky: side effects may include blurred vision headache nausea peeling skin vertigo diarrhea ringing in ears and sudden death!”

    “A small price to pay. Come on Barack. You know you haven’t been yourself – Little Barry hasn’t been out to play for ages. We can’t just ignore it; we have to get you some help”.

    “I’m just under a lot of pressure is all. Got a lot on my mind right now”.

    “Maybe – but what about me? I’m a beautiful, vibrant career woman and full time Mom who successfully balances home, marriage and career. I’m a role model for all women – and I want my propers!”

    “I know, I’m sorry – maybe after next Tuesday, when things calm down a little…”

    “I don’t want to wait that long! I’m getting all pent up, Barack, and pent up people do crazy things. Look at how pent Hillary is – she was sort of okay until Bill, you know, stopped doing his home work”.

    “Hillary has a penis allergy”.

    “You mean ‘peanut allergy’ don’t you?”


    “Well, anyway you should be as horny as a billygoat, Barack – you’re on top of the world right now, honey!”

    “I guess…I just feel kind of confused sometimes”.

    “About what?”

    “Well, you know – about priorities. Look at the girls; we’re blessed with two smart, beautiful little girls. Shouldn’t I be spending my time being a good father to them and bringing them up right, which is more than my feckless, drunk dad and my space shot hippy mother ever managed for me? Shouldn’t they be my priority? Isn’t that the right thing? Hasn’t my whole life to date been some weird voyage of neurotic self-discovery? Shouldn’t I be seeing a shrink or something?”

    “You can see the Surgeon General for all I care, Barack, but I have needs. Urgent, pressing…throbbing female needs and the White House is gonna be full of hunky young Marines and Secret Service agents – so you better get busy, mister”.

    “Phew -no pressure, then. Okay; maybe you could, you know, do that thing that I like? That usually gets me going”.

    “What? Read aloud to you from one of your books? No way – I’m supposed to be getting some pleasure out of this, you know!”

  11. Confucius says:

    How much did Princess Di’s wedding cost? And her funeral? And all the post-mortem inquests?


  12. Odie44 says:

    Sort of like the “out of control, lavish expense those wealthy Republicans use unfairly against the Democratic candidates for President”…

    Que campaign finance in…

  13. fuzeme says:

    I voted for Obama, but not for this kind of inaugural stupidity. He claims to be all about change, but this is just more of the same wasteful spending and misguided priorities.

    We have countless millions struggling in poverty, without adequate housing, food, or healthcare.

    The inauguration should be quick, simple, private, and cheap, not just another excuse to party while those less-fortunate continue to suffer.

    • proreason says:

      Welcome to one tiny dose of reality.

      There is hope, even for an Obamy voter.

      As lesson 2, since you are obviously on the compassionate side of things, you might begin considering whether hand-outs are the only way to help millions of people get out of poverty. As a hint, ask yourself what has been different in the Western world between about 1750 and 2008 and the rest of the world for the rest of history, since other than those years in the west, 99% of humanity was mired in poverty forever. Hint 2….it begins with Capital and ends with ism.

      Then begin figuring out if that hopey-changey guy you voted for is on the right side of that lesson.

  14. JohnMG says:

    …..”He claims to be all about change, but this is just more of the same wasteful spending and misguided priorities.

    We have countless millions struggling in poverty, without adequate housing, food, or healthcare……”

    He’s going to take care of them, too. He’s just going to use everybody else’s money–including yours.

    You should have come to visit us earlier, fuzeme. Maybe we could have helped you figure a few things out.

  15. wardmama4 says:

    When a Republican does what basically was done before – it is ‘ lavish ‘.

    When a Democrat does 3 times as much – it ‘doesn’t deserve any criticism’.

    And therein lies the most dangerous difference of the two parties – but more importantly to those who support the Dems – they are like spoiled, selfish children – I WON, It’s MY turn, shut up and DEAL WITH IT.

    I am so sick of two certain cable ‘news’ networks that are running constant Obamanation updates – this event will be historic in that if the US survives the next 4 years intact and economically viable – It will be a miracle from God.

    Because The One ™, the Crapweasels in Congress and the (No)Change (Clintonista retread) Administration – are going to do everything in their power to destroy America from within.

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