The designation/callsign “Air Force One” has been around since around the time of WWII, with FDR being the first president to fly while in office. Since 1943, with only a couple exceptions, the Air Force has been flying custom versions of Boeing commercial airliners for the presidential flight mission. Most recently replaced in 1990, the president currently flies in a modified 747 with the military designation “VC-25”; two copies were produced for a cost of $325 million apiece, and the callsign “Air Force One” is only used when the president is onboard.
Even though it is still extremely advanced, Air Force One is due for a replacement. Currently, the operating cost for each VC-25 is $210,877 per hour; an extremely high figure, likely because of the dated nature and high maintenance costs of both the airframe and the avionics suite.
However, with a total program cost estimated to be around $4 billion dollars, Boeing is clearly gouging the taxpayer. The newest derivative of Air Force One will end up being over six times as expensive as the last one, which was built on the same airframe. I guess Boeing just thought the higher price tag was going to slip through the cracks of a bloated DoD budget?
On Friday, the gun control group Sandy Hook Promise released a video, “Evan”. It is a short video detailing two students trading messages on a desk, without knowing who the other is. When they finally meet on the last day of school, a shooter interjects into the scene, and the video proceeds to cycle through several shots in the video that had no focus in the prior clip.
It is important to note, that the gun rights and gun control groups stand in unison on this issue – we are all working to identify troubled individuals looking to do harm, and make sure they get the attention they deserve. No one takes issue with SHP working to cut down on gun violence.
However, after closer inspection of Sandy Hook Promise and what the group has done since its inception, I do have a big issue with the group’s practices, including this video, which is very misleading at best. At worst, the group claims to offer help that it does not provide, and is disingenuously offering to educate the public as a way to promote their own gun control agenda.
Recently, I wrote an article for GotNews on why gun owners cannot trust David Petraeus to be the next Secretary of State.
The position as the nation’s top diplomat carries with it the power to negotiate treaties and sign arms control accords. Exemplified by SoS John Kerry’s actions, these treaties are oftentimes in direct contradiction to the 2nd amendment. Again, bear in mind that support of gun owners was one of the primary reasons Donald Trump won the election in the first place.
And, like Petraeus, Mitt Romney cannot be trusted by gun owners to represent their interests on the world stage. Honestly, I never trusted him when he became the Republican nominee in 2012, and establishment politicians like him are the primary reason I had voted Libertarian for years before seeing a big difference in Trump. Romney has a record of flip-flopping, doing whatever is necessary to get votes, something that is demonstrated perfectly in his position on guns.
This morning, Paddy Power shared the above tweet, encouraging people to use the bookmaker to bet on who the next Secretary of State will be. As I have previously discussed, Paddy Power offers inferior odds to the competition, and I recommend viewing odds and/or placing wagers at Betfair’s exchange).
Though Betfair is not offering contracts on the next Secretary of State, PredictIt, a US-legal alternative, is offering contracts on the outcome. As seen below, with a total possible value of a full dollar if you are correct, most candidates offered by Paddy Power will pay out much better on PredictIt, with the notable exceptions of Rudy Giuliani and John Bolton.