We all know that the Chicago Dream Team failed to bring home the Olympic Gold this week. Among my factory worker friends, this was great news. We had spent several break-time conversations trying to figure out why this was more important than the economy, straightening out the health care debacle, the war, and the multitude of other problems we face.

When the news came down this morning that not only did the Dream Team fail to persuade the OTC, they didn’t even make the first cut; we cheered.

More sobering to us and other Americans is the staggering cost of the trip to Copenhagen. According to a Congressional study conducted in 2006; it costs$56,518 an hour to fly the reconfigured Boeing 747 that is Air Force One. The Pentagon puts the cost higher (and they should know) at $100,210 per hour to fly Air Force One without the President on board. The cost is even higher when he is aboard due to additional staff, support and maintenance.

Based on these figures, the trip to Copenhagen and back, which lasted 14 hours, cost the American taxpayers a staggering $790,000 to $1.4 million. That’s more taxpayer money per hour than most American families make in a year! And, it doesn’t even include the cost of flying the second plane round trip to Copenhagen so the First Lady and her group could visit the IOC.

Giving the President credit, he did take a few minutes (very few-about 25 minutes) to meet with Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, his top Afghan war commander. Given Obama’s habit of hogging the conversation (just watch his news conferences); I’m sure General McChrystal didn’t get to say very much during that 25 minutes.

Now that we have this important business out of the way; maybe, just maybe Obama will get off the stump and get down to the business of governing the country. I’m not betting on it though.

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