Posted on January 21, 2009. Filed under: News And Politics... |

Millions of people booed as Bush was introduded at Obama’s inauguration.  How despicable and disrespectful can these people be?  I can’t believe how they treated Bush…not just there, but during the past 8 years that he’s been in office.  In 2005, when the Bush festivities were being arranged for his second inauguration, people and the media were outraged at the price tag of the event:  $40 million.  Even the Associated Press (AP) ran a story about it.  Did they run a similar one when Obama’s topped Bush’s to the tune of $150 million, during a very bad recession and two wars?  Of course not!  I can’t believe what these ingrates are quoted as saying in this piece.  It’s so disgusting how biased people are against Bush, and for Obama.
If Obama did have America’s best interest at heart, he would have scaled back his inauguration festivities like FDR did back in 1945 when after his inaugural at the White House, he gave a short speech and served his guests cold chicken salad and plain pound cake.  Also, at his 1917 inaugural, President Wilson didn’t have any festivities at all, saying that it would have been undignified to have a cebration during a war.  Now that’s a president who has America’s interest at heart!    Obama says he is a lot like FDR, JFK, Superman and Abraham Lincoln, and the press indulge him by circulating pictures of him as FDR, Superman and Abraham Lincoln…please, I think I’m going to barf!  He couldn’t hold a candle to any of these men because they are great men who earned the trust, respect and admiration of the Americans…he’s just a guy who thinks the world owes him something.  I honestly don’t think there would be all this hoopla if he were white.  Yes, I said it, and I am far from a racist,  I’m just stating a fact.  A fact that a lot of people are too scared to say because people would label them as racist.  I know some black people who don’t like Obama either.  Can you be black and be a racist if you don’t like another black person?  No, the label is only for white people.  You wonder why I don’t want to look at his lousy mug day after day, although it’s very hard to avoid.  He’s everywhere!  When he appears on TV, I quickly turn the channel.  He’s not 100% at fault, though.  I also blame the media and some of the American people who don’t know any better.  Little do they know, but they are creating a monster of biblical proportions, and you will see what I mean as the months go by.  He is one pompous guy, and he’s getting more pompous every day.  And his wife, Michelle?  Oh, boy!  Watch what she is becoming.  Once people start taking off those rose-colored glasses they’re all wearing and he reveals his true self and objectives when he doesn’t follow through with all his emply promises, then I will have the last laugh.  I wonder if they’ll turn on him as they turned on Bush?  Here is a classic example of "Do as I say, not as I do".
Anyway, here’s the story…

AP Slammed Bush’s ‘Extravagant’ Inaugural in ’05, But Now It’s Spend, Baby, Spend

By Rich Noyes
January 14, 2009 – 13:51 ET



Four years ago, the Associated Press and others in the press suggested it was in poor taste for Republicans to spend $40 million on President Bush’s inauguration. AP writer Will Lester calculated the impact that kind of money would have on armoring Humvees in Iraq, helping victims of the tsunami, or paying down the deficit. Lester thought the party should be cancelled: “The questions have come from Bush supporters and opponents: Do we need to spend this money on what seems so extravagant?


Fast forward to 2009. The nation is still at war (two wars, in fact), and now also faces the prospect of a severe recession and federal budget deficits topping $1 trillion as far as the eye can see. With Barack Obama’s inauguration estimated to cost $45 million (not counting the millions more that government will have to pay for security), is the Associated Press once again tsk-tsking the high dollar cost?

Nope. “For inaugural balls, go for glitz, forget economy,” a Tuesday AP headline advised. The article by reporter Laurie Kellman argued for extravagance, starting with the lede:



So you’re attending an inaugural ball saluting the historic election of Barack Obama in the worst economic climate in three generations. Can you get away with glitzing it up and still be appropriate, not to mention comfortable and financially viable?


To quote the man of the hour: Yes, you can. Veteran ballgoers say you should. And fashionistas insist that you must.


"This is a time to celebrate. This is a great moment. Do not dress down. Do not wear the Washington uniform," said Tim Gunn, a native Washingtonian and Chief Creative Officer at Liz Claiborne, Inc.


"Just because the economy is in a downturn, it doesn’t mean that style is going to be in a downturn," agreed Ken Downing, fashion director for Neiman Marcus.


And if anyone does raise an eyebrow at those sequins, remind them that optimism is good for times like these. "Just say you’re doing it to help the economy," chuckled good manners guru Letitia Baldridge.


That spin is a far cry from four years ago, when the AP seemed interested in spurring resentment of the Bush inaugural’s supposedly high cost. Of course, displays of Republican wealth are routinely slammed by the media as elitist or aristocratic, while reporters seem to consider rich Democrats as stylish paragons whom we all should copy.


To get a real feel for the contrast, here’s an excerpt of Lester’s January 13, 2005 piece (as recounted in the MRC’s CyberAlert), starting with a lede designed to rain all over Bush’s parade and including the suggestion from two liberal Democrats that Bush eat cold chicken salad and pound cake instead:


President Bush’s second inauguration will cost tens of millions of dollars — $40 million alone in private donations for the balls, parade and other invitation-only parties. With that kind of money, what could you buy?


■ 200 armored Humvees with the best armor for troops in Iraq.

■ Vaccinations and preventive health care for 22 million children in regions devastated by the tsunami.

■ A down payment on the nation’s deficit, which hit a record-breaking $412 billion last year….


The questions have come from Bush supporters and opponents: Do we need to spend this money on what seems so extravagant?


New York Rep. Anthony Weiner, a Democrat, suggested inaugural parties should be scaled back, citing as a precedent Roosevelt’s inauguration during World War II:


"President Roosevelt held his 1945 inaugural at the White House, making a short speech and serving guests cold chicken salad and plain pound cake," according to a letter from Weiner and Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash. "During World War I, President Wilson did not have any parties at his 1917 inaugural, saying that such festivities would be undignified."…


Billionaire Mark Cuban, owner of the National Basketball Association’s Dallas Mavericks, voted for Bush — twice. Cuban knows a thing or two about big spending, once starring in ABC’s reality TV show, "The Benefactor," in which 16 contenders tried to pass his test for success and win $1 million.


"As a country, we face huge deficits. We face a declining economy. We have service people dying. We face responsibilities to help those suffering from the…devastation of the tsunamis," he wrote on his blog, a Web journal.


Cuban challenged Bush to set an example: "Start by canceling your inauguration parties and festivities."


Obviously, that’s not the media’s message to Barack Obama this year. And no one in the press is going to argue that, with the nation at war, the new President should be satisfied with cold chicken salad and pound cake.



 Look at what the New York Times had to say about Bush, but not about Obama’s…


Inauguration Hypocrisy: NYT Chided Bush Gala, but Obamans Free to Party
What happened to the paper’s 2005 anti-Bush criticism of a "lavish inaugural celebration in a time of war"?

Posted by: Clay Waters
1/16/2009 4:46:02 PM

At a time when the United States is fighting two wars and faces a severe recession and huge budget deficits, the inauguration of Barack Obama as the nation’s 44th president is estimated to cost $45 million. Bush’s 2004 inauguration cost roughly $40 million. But though the figures are similar there’s been a major shift in the tone of coverage at the Times.


While the Times spent much of January 2005 making clear its disapproval of Bush extravagantly celebrating his inauguration during wartime, that concerned tone is conspicuously absent from the Times in January 2009, although the country is not only still at war in Iraq and Afghanistan, but also in danger of a deep recession. The difference? Perhaps because this time, it’s the Times’ favored candidate who is readying to assume the highest office.


A January 11, 2005 editorial on Bush’s second inauguration, "Victor’s Spoils," sniffed:

At the rate President Bush’s supporters are giving money, his second inauguration threatens to stand out in the history books like the common folks’ muddy boot prints on the White House furniture at Andrew Jackson’s gala. The $40 million record for inaugural partying set four years ago for Mr. Bush is expected to be shattered this month….Ordinary citizens might have hoped that the overriding issue in Washington — the perilous Iraq war, with its drain on the nation’s blood and treasure — would dictate restraint. But plans for the four-day extravaganza roll forward with nine celebratory balls being underwritten by the usual corporate and fat-cat supplicants in the political power mill. There’s nothing new in Washington’s triumphalist celebrations, festooned with price tags for access, but war usually mutes the singing and dancing. Not this year.

Here’s a January 16, 2005 headline: "The Inauguration: The Ceremonies; For Inauguration in Wartime, A Lingering Question of Tone." Reporter John Tierney noted:

Inaugurations are always balancing acts: part coronation, part celebration of democracy, part touchdown dance in the end zone. But they become even trickier during times of war, particularly when television images of dancers in black tie can be instantly juxtaposed with soldiers in body armor….Some critics say spending so much on these parties seems ill-timed both because of the Iraq war and the tsunami catastrophe in Asia. Anthony D. Weiner, a Democratic congressman preparing to run for mayor of New York, sent President Bush a letter on Tuesday suggesting that the millions in inaugural funds be sent to the troops in Iraq.

To his credit, Tierney noted that lavish presidential inaugurations even during wartime have been the norm rather than the exception in American history.

Reporter Anne Kornblut, now with the Washington Post, even took the argument to first lady Laura Bush in a January 15, 2005 story, "Laura Bush Defends Gala in Time of War and Disasters."

With less than a week to go until her husband’s second inauguration, Laura Bush on Friday defended the decision to hold the $40 million celebration as planned despite a war abroad and the tsunami disaster in the Indian Ocean.

Two more stories the day before the inauguration also chided Bush. From Scott Shane’s January 19, 2005 story, "A Celebration Tempered with Solemn Tributes."

In response to critics who have questioned the propriety of a lavish inaugural celebration in a time of war, Mr. Bush has made the military a central focus of the week’s events, and sponsors of other gatherings this week have followed his lead.

Elisabeth Bumiller made the same argument in her own January 19 story:

President Bush opened his inaugural celebrations on Tuesday with a lavish two-hour tribute to the United States military, but warned the crowd of 7,000 service members that "much more will be asked of you in the months and years ahead."….The tribute, "Saluting Those Who Serve," was created by inaugural organizers to set a solemn tone for the festivities surrounding Mr. Bush’s swearing-in on Thursday and comes amid criticism of a three-day celebration with a price tag of $40 million. In addition to the military, 7,000 civilians also attended the invitation-only event.

Yet the incoming Obama administration has suffered no such criticism. No editorial has appeared chiding President-elect Obama about extravagant inauguration spending while the nation is involved in two wars and is being buffeted by a deep financial crisis. The difference in tone is evident in chirpy stories like Wednesday’s story by Juliet Macur on Obama-related merchandise: "Inspired by Obama’s Message? Pull Out Your Wallet."

(The Times itself is aggressively hawking its own Obama commemorative merchandise, including its Election Day edition and its upcoming Inauguration Day edition, as well as a Times book to be released on President’s Day, "Obama: The Historic Journey.")

David Kirkpatrick’s Friday story on inauguration perks for Obama donors, "To Those Who Gave Much, Much Will Be Given," made no mention of the sinking economy, or the propriety of holding such an opulent inauguration during a recession and two wars.


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