June 1, 2009  

Flight fright

To the White House for authorizing the Air Force One photo op over Manhattan. For allowing something so indescribably stupid, White House Military Office director Louis Caldera was right to resign. But the inquiry into this incident did not go far enough in exposing all those who were responsible. In truth, this is a case that demands a quiver-full of Darts fired in many directions. Why in the name of all that’s rational didn’t someone in the Pentagon, the Air Force, the Federal Aviation Administration, the New York City Police and Fire departments and City Hall, or the New York and New Jersey Port Authorities put up a hand and ask the one obvious question: “Is this wise?” Had someone been injured or killed in a panicked evacuation as they saw a jumbo jet fly straight toward their offices, then this incident would have risen far beyond the “very stupid mistake” category. The inquiry into how this happened should have applied that benchmark as it dealt with all those involved.