[Guest post by DRJ]
The Obama Inauguration will cost at least $160 million, almost four times what George W. Bush’s 2004 Inauguration cost. According to a Congressional committee spokeswoman, anything less is unacceptable:
“Carole Florman, spokeswoman for the joint congressional committee on inaugural ceremonies, told the New York Daily News, which estimated the cost at $160m: “We’re always very budget conscious. But we’re sending a message to the entire world about our peaceful transition of power, and you don’t want it to look like a schlock affair. It needs to be appropriate to the magnitude of events that it is.”
Florman deals specifically with the inauguration ceremony at the Congress, which is relatively modest. The surge in spending is partly because of the Obama’s [sic] decision to open the entire Mall to the public.”
Schlock is defined as cheap or trashy. If spending less than $160M to inaugurate Obama is cheap, God help us in the next four years.
EDIT: Note that the $160M cost of Obama’s inauguration includes security costs that are not included in Bush’s $42M inaugural but, as the link points out, Obama’s security costs are much greater than Bush’s “because of the Obama’s [sic] decision to open the entire Mall to the public.”
[Guest post by DRJ]
Glenn Reynolds links this KnoxNews article that reports Obama is ready to end harsh interrogations, except to the extent he’s not:
“President-elect Barack Obama is preparing to prohibit the use of waterboarding and harsh interrogation techniques by ordering the CIA to follow military rules for questioning prisoners, according to two U.S. officials familiar with drafts of the plans. Still under debate is whether to include a loophole that would allow exceptions in extraordinary cases.”
How is this different from President Bush’s policy?
[Guest post by DRJ]
It’s Friday and the economic news is not good.
California can’t send out tax refunds until February. Bank of America needs another bailout to help cover its Merrill Lynch liabilities, making it the Bank owned by America. Circuit City has given up its efforts to reorganize and is liquidating 567 stores. Hertz and Conoco announced layoffs, and the list could go on. In fact, I think it will go on for the next 12-18 months.
Still … it’s Friday and I’m mellow and not inclined to think about the economy, politics, war, law, or the like. So that leaves Austin cat-blogging.
Ever wonder why they say “Keep Austin Weird”? Maybe because you could see a guy riding a bike with a cat on his back:
“I saw you on the sidewalk this morning. You were riding your bike east on Barton Springs Road. You were listening to an iPod. You had a cat on your back.
It was a gray cat with a fluffy tail and a pink leash around its neck. It was draped across your right shoulder. I think you probably know that, though.
I was amazed. That cat looked so content as you rode right next to four lanes of traffic. How — HOW? — did you get your cat to do that??”
It might even be this guy, unless there’s another Austin guy with a cat on his back:
Photo by Rebecca Sikes, Austin Chronicle.
The economy may be bad but life is good, don’t you think?
An op-ed in the L.A. Times by the son of a man killed by FALN terrorists gives some insight into the folks whose pardon Holder claims was “reasonable”:
During their Chicago trial, some of them threatened the life of Judge Thomas McMillen, who was hearing the case. Carmen Valentin, one of those later pardoned by Clinton, told the judge, “You are lucky that we cannot take you right now,” and she told other officers of the court, “You will be walking with canes and wheelchairs. … Revolutionary justice can be fierce.” She also declared war against the United States. Dylcia Pagan, another recipient of Clinton’s gift, warned the courtroom: “All of you, I would advise you to watch your backs.” McMillen was convinced the defendants would continue being terrorists as long as they lived. “If there was a death penalty,” he said at their sentencing, “I’d impose the penalty on you without hesitation.”
Death penalty, pardon. Tomato, to-mah-to.
Your next Attorney General, ladies and gentlemen.