Thursday, August 6, 2009
Flying the not so friendly skies!
Now I'm frustrated....I keep waiting for the American government to act responsibly with our tax dollars and be more transparent with how they spend our money.
I guess my wait is still not over.
Just before Congress went on their summer break, the House approved $200 million to buy three Gulf Stream jets to fly top government officials and members of Congress around.
I realize that most of us have flown in private jets before (LOL), but just in case you prefer to fly commercial, below is a picture of a plush G5 Gulf stream jet.
I’m trying to remember, maybe you can help me, wasn't it just last year when Congress publicly chastised the auto industry and their CEO'S for traveling to Washington by private jet to attend hearings about possible bailouts for their companies.
I watched some of these hearings and I privately applauded Congress when this happened! When you're coming for a handout, it's best not to arrive in a Limo. Just tacky in my book!
Apparently Congress is not averse to private air travel, because at the end of July, the House approved nearly $200 million for the Air Force to buy three elite Gulf stream jets for top government officials and Members of Congress to use.
The Air force requested one scaled down G5 to add to it's fleet,
but the House Appropriations Committee added to the 2010 Defense appropriations bill another $132 million for two more airplanes and specified that they be assigned to the D.C.-area that carry Members of Congress, military brass and top government officials.
While searching the Government websites for more information, I found that
Steve Ellis, vice president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, said if Congress wants to buy new jets for the comfort of top government officials, “I think that all needs to be justified on the merits. ... Certainly, lawmakers can fly — and many do fly — coach and business class.” While there may be reasons for flying on top-notch private jets, “it shouldn't’t just be squeezed into the bill.”
Ellis said the airplanes are also part of a larger trend for the Appropriations Committee to simply decide that big-ticket items are program increases, not earmarks, so they require less public disclosure.
Amazing...and here I thought we the people would get more transparency, not business as usual.