But $17 million, just for security, should have caused the White House second thoughts of rescaling the event size and budget that wouldn't be so insulting to the taxpayers of Washington DC, and the nation at large.
Almost as insulting was Bush and his team's continued lament that the inauguration was about freedom and , the people, although he kept protesters far out of sight, and charged thousands of dollars for people to join in on the some Inaugural meals. In short, the Inauguration was really only for rich people who like Bush's and his concept of freedom, which is, frankly, fucked.
Oliver Willis has a great clip from Fox News with Vanity Fair editor Judy Bachrach complaining about the inauguration ceremonies as Brigitte Quinn does a horrible job of defending the White House. Quinn almost feels like a Democratic plant she's so bad.
Some other details pointed out from American Progress (referred by Tony Pierce):
A look at this week's festivities by the numbers:
- $40 million: Cost of Bush inaugural ball festivities, not counting security costs.
- $2,000: Amount FDR spent on the inaugural in 1945…about $20,000 in today's dollars.
- 200: Number of Humvees outfitted with top-of-the-line armor for troops in Iraq that could have been purchased with the amount of money blown on the inauguration.
- $1: Amount per guest President Carter spent on snacks for guests at his inaugural parties. To stick to a tight budget, he served pretzels, peanuts, crackers and cheese and had cash bars.
- 22 million: Number of children in regions devastated by the tsunami who could have received vaccinations and preventive health care with the amount of money spent on the inauguration.
- 1,160,000: Number of girls who could be sent to school for a year in Afghanistan with the amount of money lavished on the inauguration.
- $15,000: The down payment to rent a fur coat paid by one gala attendee who didn't want the hassle of schlepping her own through the airport.
- 2,500: Number of U.S. troops used to stand guard as President Bush takes his oath of office
- 26,000: Number of Kevlar vests for U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan that could be purchased for $40 million.
- $290: Bonus that could go to each American solider serving in Iraq, if inauguration funds were used for that purpose.
- $6.3 million: Amount contributed by the finance and investment industry, which works out to be 25 percent of all the money collected.
- $17 million: Amount of money the White House is forcing the cash-strapped city of Washington, D.C., to pony up for inauguration security.
- 9: Percentage of D.C. residents who voted for Bush in 2004.