Friday, December 10, 2004

Boogie with the Bushes!

This is the title of an article in the UK Guardian about how to get to be invited to the inauguration parties in Washington, D.C. in January:

It is the ultimate mini-break. But for $1m, it should be.
Being in Washington for George Bush's inauguration on January 20 will not come cheap. Even the bargain deals cost $10,000. Whether the $1m (£522,000) offer will give value for money is a moot point.
Those prepared to pay will get a four nights in the Jefferson hotel, four blocks from the White House, return travel from any city in the US, chauffeur and butler on 24-hour call for the duration, tickets for two to an unspecified inaugural event attended by Mr Bush, his-and-her diamond watches and designer outfits, spa treatment and monogrammed bath robes. But the real selling point, the hotel believes, is the day-after outing to Chicago by executive jet for a private tour of an exhibition devoted to Jacqueline Kennedy's White House years.
A number of other luxury hotels are touting inaugural week packages running from $75,000 to $200,000.
The modest $10,000 package at the Fairmont hotel includes a "faux" security detail of two agents in dark glasses and dark suits muttering into cufflink walkie talkies.
But the four days of galas and banquets are not a time for scrimping. The inaugural committee chaired by Senator Trent Lott says the celebrations will be on an epic scale and is seeking to raise more than $40m.
Those hankering for maximum face time - an exclusive lunch with Mr Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney, and two tables for 19 friends at an eve-of inauguration banquet - will have to find $250,000.
Those of more modest means can opt for dinner alone and a more fleeting appearance by Mr Bush for $100,000 dollars.

I wonder how many fundamentalists can afford to go? Should their religion allow such frivolity, of course. But I suspect that most of the guests will be from corporations which is very fitting given the corporate nature of the United States today. Ordinary people will not have an opportunity to participate this way, but maybe they could stage their own anti-inauguration party?

Also, if "o" stands for opportunity, removing it from the title leaves: "Bogie with the Bushes" which I like a lot better.