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When Government Decision-Making Gets REALLY Stupid!

Scott on April 27, 2009 at 1:54 pm

I am not someone who takes joy in ripping into “the government” for bad decisions made by a few individuals.  Government is made up of agencies, and agencies of departments, and departments of individuals.  If a few people do or say stupid things, it certainly reflects badly on their department and agency, but it should more directly reflect badly on them.

Except for today…

Today during an ill-planned photo op, the Boeing 747 whose designation is Air-Force One when the president is flying on board, was engaged in an extended fly over of NY City along with an escort of two F-16 fighter jets.


Suffice it to say that the unannounced appearance of a passenger plane along with fighter jets flying low over Lower Manhattan did not go over well.  According to New Jersey Star Ledger:

Some people could see the huge plane and the accompanying Air Force F-16 fighter circling low from their windows and began rushing down stairwells.

“People started screaming like it was another 9/11 event –Everyone out! Everyone out!” said Carol Pancaldo, 40, who from her 28th floor office had watched the World Trade towers tumble nearly eight years ago. “I looked out and saw the tail of a plane. So I just picked up my bag and left, ran for the stairwell.”

The response from the FAA spokesperson kills me.  According to this amazingly sensitive political operative:

“The photo op was approved and coordinated with everyone.”

Hmmm.  Everyone?  Really?  I guess everyone doesn’t include all the people who live and work around Manhattan Island.  By “everyone,” maybe he meant the people who count.  You know, like politicians and political lackies.


As the story has been unfolding today, it has now become an exercise in C.Y.A.  According to the Wall Street Journal:

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates bridges, tunnels and airports in the area, said initially the agency had no knowledge of the low-flying plane, according to a spokesman. But several Port Authority executives, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to an ongoing investigation, said that the agency received a memo from the FAA, but not until sometime Monday morning.

Update by John: Here’s raw video of the flyover. Yeah, that would creep me out big time:

YouTube Preview Image

The White House has issued an apology and Obama (who was not aboard) is said to be “furious.” Mayor Bloomberg is also “furious.” Three more of these dopes and we’ll have the Furious Five.

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