Despite living in the "fishbowl" of the White House, despite requiring secret service protection everywhere she goes, and even despite hearing her husband constantly criticized for his awful performance as president of the United States---despite all that and more First Lady Michelle Obama must be a very happy woman.
Two news items released yesterday made it clear.
The first comes from the SCHMOTUS Joe Biden, he said this during a speech yesterday (if you cannot see video below--please click here).
I don't understand why the audience found this so funny (and neither did Biden). While his declaration fits into the category of TMI (too much information) and it does make me wonder how the SCHMOTUS knows about the "Presidential manhood," it is nice to know that Barack Obama is exceptional in one area of his life (because he is pretty lousy at running the country). It also explains why Michelle Obama seems to smile a lot.
The second item is a bit more "chaste."
Vacations are very important, it gives us a chance to re-charge our batteries and really relax. Unfortunately vacations can be very expensive. When I went down to Walt Disney World with my wife and kids a few months ago, even though we tried to "go on the cheap," it still cost us a few thousand dollars.
Michelle Obama doesn't have to worry about that, especially the part about "going on the cheap." That's because while the rest of us are saving up for months (or years) to afford the cost of going on vacation, we are also paying for Michelle Obama to go on vacation---and she goes in style.
For example, according to Judicial watch when the first lady took her children, her friends and their children to Spain in 2010 it cost us almost a half-a million dollars. Some trip right?
In August 2010 the unemployment rate was 9.6% and many of us could not afford vacations. But the first lady and friends (and their little dog too) took a "little trip to Spain. While the White House claims the Obamas “paid their own way” for the vacation, the records detail some of the required security and other costs to taxpayers for the private trip. According to Judicial Watch, the following are highlights from the U.S. Air Force records, which indicate a total cost of $213,124.15:
- According to U.S. Department of Defense’s 2010 published hourly rates, the total cost of flying Michelle Obama and her guests from Camp Andrews to Malaga and then to Mallorca and back to the United States was $199,323.75. This is based on approximately 17 hours and 15 minutes of total flying time.
- The 15-member flight crew stayed at Tryp Guadalmar, a nearby motel. Lodging cost was $10,290.60 and car rental cost was $2,633.50. Food cost was $876.30, including $57.68 for four bottles of maple syrup and a package of pancake mix.
- The U.S. Air Force concealed the number of civilian passengers who accompanied Mrs. Obama on the five-day trip, citing an exemption to FOIA law. (The New York Times previously reported that Mrs. Obama brought along one of her daughters and “two friends and four of their daughters, as well as a couple of aides and a couple of advance staff members.”)
- Secret Service records, meanwhile, show that the costs to the agency for the vacation were $254,461.20. This total includes $26,670.61 for a chauffeur tour of Costa del Sol and $50,078.78 for a travel planning company SET P&V, S.L. (George Soros is 50% owner of the travel company.) Taxpayers also paid the bill for separate lodging for a dog and its handler.
Having the American taxpayers shell out $467,585 so she can show off the frills of the Presidency to her friends and their kids must make Michelle Obama a VERY happy woman, but for the President's sake I hope it doesn't make her as happy as...when you know...what Joe Biden talked about.