Just Plain Cruel

A few weeks back, I wrote a post asking for input on the case in Texas where a pregnant mother who is brain-dead is kept “alive” to basically act as an incubator.

Today brings a disturbing update, that the fetus has severe deformities.

I would love your thoughts.

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What’s Your Take On This?

I ran across an interesting article today, and instead of writing a prolonged entry on my take on it, I thought maybe I would share the article and ask what other people thought.  I am hoping some sort of discussion (a civil one) will take place in the comments section.

Anyway, here is the article.  Please comment with what you think.

Hypocritical Much? Part Six

For previous editions, please check out the previous five by clicking on any of the following: part one, part two, part three, part four, or part five.

Today’s hypocrite is actually multiple hypocrites.  Is it solely John Boehner, who is insisting that President Obama pay back the security cost of his upcoming vacation to Hawaii (approximately $4 million)?  Or is it everyone who is expressing “outrage” that he and his family are planning a vacation?  The ones who are screaming the loudest, including Boehner, were the ones who were most silent during President Bush’s numerous trips.

Even if we compared only President Obama’s Hawaii trips to the trips made by President Bush to his ranch in Crawford, Texas, the numbers pale in comparison.  I am choosing to leave out trips to the Presidential retreat at Camp David because that is used primarily as a “weekend getaway” destination.  I am also going to preface my entire argument with the fact that a vacation by a sitting president is not like any vacation you or I would take; when we leave the office for a week or two, we can forget about work, and that is something a president just cannot do.  Vacation should be used lightly when referring to these trips.

Since taking office, this will be the 4th opportunity for President Obama to take a trip to Hawaii for vacation.  Generously using the above figure of $4 million per vacation, it does not take a math major to come up with a total of $16 million.  A lot of money to be sure, but it pales in comparison to what Bush spent.

President Bush took 77 trips to his ranch in Crawford during his time in office.  77 trips in 8 years, or just shy of 10 per year.  The hourly cost to operate Air Force One is estimated to be $179,000, and it is a 4.5 hour trip from D.C. to Texas.  That gives us $805,500 for a one-way flight, and $1,611,000 for a round trip flight.  One trip is cheaper for sure, but President Bush was not making one trip per year.  Remember, he averaged closed to 10 trips per year.  The total cost of his trips, over his two terms, was approximately $124,047,000!  That is way more than what Obama has spent, and is way more than what he would spend if he took the trip to Hawaii in each of his 8 years over two terms.  At $4 million per trip, Obama would have to make a total of 31 trips to Hawaii, which puts him 27 trips behind schedule after this year.  Sources for cost of Bush trips are here and here.

Again, I am not going to criticize either Bush or Obama for taking their vacations.  Bush seems to have taken a lot of trips to his ranch during his time in office, but what’s done is done.  Being the President of the United States is a 24 hour-per-day stressful job.  Do an image search on both Bush and Obama for a picture of each before their first term, and compare it to what they look like at the start of their second term; the stress takes it toll and shows.

I am a little sick of all of the “outrage” that is expressed anytime President Obama does anything.  If he so much as takes a walk through the Rose Garden, he is criticized for leading with his left foot instead of his right.  I strongly believe that his critics would point out that he has bad eating habits if they found out he did not chew his food 23 times before swallowing.  Conservatives gave President Bush a pass on everything he did during his 8 years in office, and yelled that his critics were not patriotic if we dared to criticize him for anything.

Like any president or politician, there are legitimate things that President Obama can be criticized for.  Taking a family vacation is not one of them.