published Saturday, March 30th, 2013

Taxpayers are footing obama's extreme bill and other letters to the editors

Taxpayers are footing obama's extreme bill

Taxpayers spent $1.4 billion dollars on staffing, housing, flying and entertaining President Obama and his family last year, according to the author of a new book on taxpayer-funded presidential perks. In comparison, British taxpayers spent just $57.8 million on the royal family.

Author Robert Keith Gray writes in "Presidential Perks Gone Royal" that Obama isn't the only president to have taken advantage of the expensive trappings of his office. But the amount of money spent on the first family, he argues, has risen tremendously under the Obama administration and needs to be reined in.

Gray told The Daily Caller that the $1.4 billion spent on the Obama family last year is the "total cost of the presidency," factoring the cost of the "biggest staff in history at the highest wages ever," a 50 percent increase in the numbers of appointed czars and an Air Force One "running with the frequency of a scheduled airline."

Perspective: $1.4 billion is equal to spending seven times Mitt Romney's entire net worth every year. If Romney had to pay for Barack and Michelle's lifestyle this year, he would have been bankrupt by the third week in February.

Now, who's talking about the evil, freeloading rich people, who didn't build anything and who need to "pay a little bit more?"

LEWIS HUDSON, Hixson


Broken families and gangs are connected

Thank you for the commentary "Gangs are a substitute for broken families." Unless the issue of broken families is addressed all other efforts to reduce gang violence will fail.

The seeds for broken families were sewn by the unintended consequences of the Great Society programs which encouraged men to desert their wives and children.

GEORGE MAYO, PhD., Retired psychologist


Missy Crutchfield is simply not qualified

I think what everyone forgets in the discussion of a pottery shop is that Missy Crutchfield is not qualified for her job. I don't mind my tax money going to things I don't do. I don't play golf, and the city has nice golf courses. I don't play tennis, same thing. They add to the quality of life here, and that's good for everyone.

My child can play golf or tennis or throw a pot, but Crutchfield is not qualified to run a department.

BEVERLY GROVES


Paper's spin on Haslam story was misleading

Once again, you have shown your true anti-conservative stripes in the misleading headline on the front page for March 28. Haslam not wanting to just dump people into an already flawed Medicaid system, but instead trying to set up a system to allow people freedom and choice of health plans does not equal "Haslam hates poor people," as your headline implies.

The staff of the Chattanooga Times Free Press has mastered the art of disguising opinion as journalism. Whatever happened to what used to be the basics of good news reporting -- who, what, where and when? Those are lost now, replaced by spin on "why," which may or may not resemble the truth.

PATRICIA O'CONNOR

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anniebelle said...

I would really like to know where Lewis Hudson was when Sprendthrift Bush43 was in office. Those who criticize the cost of Obama’s Christmas vacation don’t want you to know that George W. Bush spent at least $20 million taxpayer dollars just on flights to his ranch in Crawford.

The right wing has been outraged about the price tag for Obama’s family vacations, and they constantly hold George W. Bush up as an example of how thrifty a president should be when going on vacation.

The problem is that W. wasn’t thrifty. He was the most expensive vacation president in US history. Not only did Bush spend more days on vacation than any other president, but he used Air Force One more often while on vacation than any other president.

March 30, 2013 at 7:26 a.m.
lkeithlu said...

Gray's book has been found to be totally misleading. The current administration spends less than Bush's. Michelle Bachmann was dressed down for this garbage and so should this letter writer.

March 30, 2013 at 9 a.m.
moon4kat said...

And, I seem to remember something about the Bush girls partying in Aruba . . .

March 30, 2013 at 9:18 a.m.
anticorp said...

moon4kat said... "And, I seem to remember something about the Bush girls partying in Aruba."

Didn't they have to have a night of partying in a bar with fake ID's fixed as well???

March 30, 2013 at 9:46 a.m.
rumrunr said...

once again, a close minded conservative uses one pile of crap to build a house of cards upon. well done, mr. lewis. now move along to the next pile.

March 30, 2013 at 10:48 a.m.
nowfedup said...

Well it seems the ole Gobbels thing used by right slim still works, tell the lie often enough and the fools will buy into it. The whole story has been prove the to be right wing propaganda, again. Why paper allows it escapes me.

March 30, 2013 at 2:09 p.m.
degage said...

The claim here is Bush spent 20million flying to his Texas home. I take it that would be 2.5 million a year. The figure for airforce one is 180,000 per hour so if you figure out minimum hours to fly the first family to their 4 vacations from the Hawaii trip, golf trip, Aspen trip, and Bahamas trip for the girls, It adds up to over 6 million and that is being conservative on hours. And that is in just 3 months. They deserve vacations as all of us do but the taxpayers don't pay for our transportation. And if we are lucky we get one a year. We have no idea how many more will be taken this year. Those angry about their vacations are angry because Obama closed the WH to tours then takes vacations. All tho I hear a group from the Muslim brotherhood got to take a tour, might not be true, but if it is it is unfair to those that have been denied. I will try to find out more about it, and no I didn't hear it from Fox.

March 31, 2013 at 11:34 a.m.
lkeithlu said...

Bachmann claimed that the white house spent 1.4 billion a year, and it was to support a lavish lifestyle (5 chefs on air force one, professional dog walker, etc) Even Bill O'Reilly called her out. Bush spent more and took more vacation trips.

Criticize Obama for real failings. Attack him falsely for stupid stuff, and don't be surprised that your credibility is shot.

March 31, 2013 at 11:48 a.m.
degage said...

Ike this country is broke even if this administration says otherwise, and who paid for his trips to fund raisers at the rate of 3 to 4 a week. And who is paying for him to fly all over the place still campaigning for his agenda when he could just hold WH briefings and it would be all over the TV. More people would here him than the 1,000 that end up showing up to his speech. I am aware we disagree and I respect your right to disagree with my findings and feelings about this president. I do not question your credibility so please give me the same respect. I'm just trying to show the other side of the coin.

March 31, 2013 at 12:20 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

Sorry degage, I was actually referring to Bachmann's credibility. Now that I read my comment, it does look like I am addressing you and I am sorry. Yes, we disagree-one could criticize Bush for spending all that time in TX when we were at war, except that we never declared war.

March 31, 2013 at 1:12 p.m.
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