Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has recently been embroiled in yet another scandal. She has been ensnared by so many scandals, however, and has been caught doing so many blatantly corrupt, arrogant and disgraceful things, that it can be difficult to keep track of them all.
In this case, Whitmer and a few of her top aides were caught taking private jet trips to Florida well after Whitmer herself cautioned ordinary Michiganders not to do so.
Florida has essentially eliminated its COVID lockdown mandates, and the idea that the pleb might enjoy freedom for themselves is simply intolerable to a petter authoritarian like Whitmer. That privilege, evidently, is only to be reserved to beautiful people like herself.
When this shameful display of venality and hypocrisy came to light, people naturally began to wonder how much Whitmer paid for this private jet trip and whether she paid for it with taxpayer funds.
Well, now, we know how much Whitmer’s trip cost, and it doesn’t reflect well on her at all.
As the saying goes, it’s good to be the king — or, in this case, it’s good to be the governor. One of the perks of being governor, apparently, is massive discounts on jet fares.
Ordinarily, a trip on a private jet from Lansing, Michigan to West Palm Beach, Florida and back again — which is where Whitmer flew between — could cost anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000. Using the plane that she actually used for the trip can cost as much as $40,000.
But how much did Whitmer actually pay for her four-day excursion to Florida? A whopping $855! The remaining $27,521 cost of the trip was covered by a non-profit corporation. One wonders what sort of political favors that non-profit has secured for itself by paying for Whitmer’s flight.
Also, incidentally, the company that flew Whitmer to and from Florida, Air Eagle LLC, does not even have FAA approval to carry out chartered flights.
Rules for thee but not for me.
Politics Without Romance
Politicians can be just as greedy, self-seeking, venal and self-interested as anyone else — and often more so. The romantic image of elected representatives as selfless and giving public servants simply does not accord with reality.
A school of economic thought known as the Public Choice School has long worked to show this. Public Choice economists have shown how politicians often use their political connections to secure favors and sweet deals for themselves and those whom they favor. These can range from licensing laws that restrict which firms may enter a particular field of business to extreme discounts on private jet trips.
There is nothing kooky about suggesting that politicians use their offices to benefit themselves and their friends. It’s simply a recognition of the hoary truth that people respond to incentives. In fact, it would be kookier to suggest that people don’t do this.
As more evidence continues to emerge of the various ways that politicians — whether Whitmer or others — have pilfered the country for their own gain, perhaps people will become more inclined to view politics without rose-colored glasses.