America needs to Occupy Washington
The Occupy Wall Street movement has been noted to be supported by several socialist and communist organizations in an effort to destroy capitalism in America. What America needs is an Occupy Washington Movement to remove the abuse of coruption in Washington. The CEO’s of various companies, that create jobs, are not the problem. The problem begins with our Chief Executive, Barack Obama.
While Obama complains about CEO’s using their corporate jet at the expense of the company, Obama uses Airforce One as his personal corporate jet at the expense of tax dollars from the American people. While each president has a right to use the people’s money for vacation, Obama abuses this luxury. Just one trip alone to Hawaii cost the tax payers $1.5 million. The additional cost included Mrs Obama arriving 30 minutes earlier using Air Force Two at an additional tax cost of $11,351 per hour. The Obama’s, White House staff, and Secret Service stayed at luxurious beachfront housing, even though they could have stayed at beachfront homes on the Kaneohe Marine Corps Air Station, located less than five minutes from their luxury suites. The cost does not include office building rental in Kaulua, cost of rental cars for White House staff or the total cost of surveilance and Secret Service. This is just one example of many.
Even worse, Mrs Obama has become a vacationing queen taking scores of vacations that included tax funded travel for her mother, children, and cousins to several tourist destinations including Spain and an African safari, which again include Secret Service and her staff. According to D’Angelo Gore of factcheck.org, there are 26 attendants catering to the First Lady.
The following was the list of White House staff members assigned to the First Lady, published in 2010, including their annual salaries (see http://www.politicsdaily.com/2009/07/06/what-michelle-obamas-staffers-earn/):
$172,200 Susan Sher (Chief of Staff), replaced by Tina Tchen in January 2011
$140,000 Jocelyn C. Frye (Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Policy and Projects for the First Lady)
$113,000 Desiree Rogers (Special Assistant to the President and White House Social Secretary)
$102,000 Camille Y. Johnston (Special Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the First Lady)
$102,000 Melissa E. Winter (Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff to the First Lady)
$ 90,000 David S. Medina (Deputy Chief of Staff to the First Lady)
$ 84,000 Catherine M. Lelyveld (Director and Press Secretary to the First Lady)
$ 75,000 Frances M. Starkey (Director of Scheduling and Advance for the First Lady)
$ 70,000 Trooper Sanders (Deputy Director of Policy and Projects for the First Lady)
$ 65,000 Erinn J. Burnough (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
$ 65,000 Joseph B. Reinstein (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
$ 62,000 Jennifer R. Goodman (Deputy Director of Scheduling and Events Coordinator for the First Lady)
$ 60,000 Alan O. Fitts (Deputy Director of Advance and Trip Director for the First Lady)
$ 60,000 Dana M. Lewis (Special Assistant and Personal Aide to the First Lady)
$ 52,500 Semonti M. Mustaphi (Associate Director and Deputy Press Secretary to the First Lady)
$ 50,000 Kristen E. Jarvis (Special Assistant for Scheduling and Traveling Aide to the First Lady)
$ 45,000 Tyler A. Lechtenberg (Associate Director of Correspondence for the First Lady)
$ 45,000 Samantha Tubman (Deputy Associate Director, Social Office)
$ 40,000 Joseph J. Boswell (Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff to the First Lady)
$ 36,000 Sally M. Armbruster (Staff Assistant to the Social Secretary)
$ 36,000 Natalie Bookey (Staff Assistant)
$ 36,000 Deilia A. Jackson (Deputy Associate Director of Correspondence for the First Lady)
Three additional attendants to Michelle Obama not reported include Natalie Bookey, a “staff assistant,” Johnny Wright, the “first hairstylist,” and Ingrid Grimes-Miles, a “makeup artist.”
Why would Michelle Obama have such an unprecedented number of staffers during a time when millions of Americans are out of work and struggling to support their families? Over President Obama’s four years as president, the taxpayers will have had to pay over $6 million to compensate the First Lady’s staff members. Let’s clearly recall that the future First Lady stated during the campaign, “For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country.” I assume she is proud now that the taxpayers are paying for her luxuries.
Then there is the report of the First Lady wearing $540 Lanvin sneakers during a stop to provide soup to the needy at a shelter.
The Obama’s are out of touch with the America people, ignoring important domestic and international issues while vacationing and living in luxury at the expense of the American taxpayer. Washington has become home to the special priveledged with special retirement accounts and medical. They receive special benefits not accessable to the American people. They are allowed to make laws that benefit certain companies, and then invest in those companies as insiders, making millions. This is known as insider trading. For the CEO of a company to be involved in such a practice, would cost him years in prison. However, if you are from Washington, it is legal. Just make sure you have your wife show up with her $540 Lanvin sneakers at a soup shelter to show you care about the poor.
Frank Aquila is president of the South San Joaquin Republicans and author of “Sarah Palin Out of Nowhere”. He can be emailed at email@example.com