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POTUS in town

I had to make a run up to Hill AFB as I had been asked to drop by and take some more pictures for some projects. I’ll have more to say about the trip up to Hill AFB later and I suspect there will be more pictures for the Machines category of Jonesblog, but the subject of todays post is that interestingly, the POTUS was in town so navigating out of town was a little bit of a hassle as the Secret Service had things pretty well clamped down starting around 8:30am.

The logistics to haul the POTUS around really are pretty impressive and the cost is not inconsiderable. It has been reported the President Bush travels with 250 Secret Service agents, 150 National Security Advisors, 50 White House political aids, 15 sniffer dog teams, a team of 5 chefs and 200 representatives from other US departments. There are two identical motorcades of 20 armored vehicles including the POTUS limousine that make the trip as well as an ambulance or two in each motorcade. I don’t know if the whole entourage made the trip out to Utah the other day, but I do know that when W came to town ostensibly to stump for the Republican party at taxpayer expense, in this particular instance, we got to fly out a C-5 Galaxy filled with Marine One, three other specially prepared CH-53 support helicopters for the Secret Service and close staff, Air Force One of course and a myriad of other chartered and military flights to support the mission. This is on top of all the local police expenses necessary to provide protection and order.

I don’t have any problem with all of this support for the office of the POTUS and believe it is an honorable mission to support the office and am quite impressed by the logistics. However, the purpose of this particular trip out to Utah and the expenses incurred by the taxpayer do leave me wondering about this particular visit…


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2 Responses

  1. Going through your archives a little bit and came across this one. Here at UDOT, when calculating project costs, one thing that is considered is called “User Cost”, which is the cost to the public and economy resuling from closed roads, traffic jams or other delays. Those costs are then used as justification for night work and bonuses for early project delivery. I wonder if those costs are calculated somewhere as well. I remember a couple of years ago when they had the G8 summit in Germany, there were so many protests going on and they had to practically shut down the whole area (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/33rd_G8_summit), sealing man-holes, etc. In days of Skype, it does make you wonder how much of this is really still required. But I digress.



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