Politics

Your $328,000 Photo

|

Since I went into an ALL-CAPS CONNIPTION over White House spokesman's Robert Gibbs' jokey dismissal of questions regarding just when the administration planned on releasing the photo behind the photo-op that terrorized Manhattan last month, decency compels a thumbs-up for the Friday-afternoon release of this image, coupled with the resignation of the responsible military office director, Louis Caldera. Who, by the way, sounds like the kind of guy who shouldn't be managing anything more strenuous than a fantasy baseball team:

$328,000

Deputy military director George Mulligan said he first told Caldera about the proposed photo shoot on April 20 — a week before it was scheduled to take place. The same aide also said Caldera should notify deputy chief of staff Jim Messina because it was an unusual move.

Caldera told officials he didn't recall the conversation. Ultimately, Caldera didn't tell Messina or Gibbs. "When asked why he failed to do so, he did not offer a coherent explanation," according to the report.

Caldera also told officials that he didn't read an e-mail detailing the flyover plans until it was over. Mulligan, Caldera's second-in-command, sent him an e-mail message on April 24 advising him again to tell Messina and Gibbs about the photo shoot.

Caldera said he hadn't seen the e-mail because he has two official accounts. He also said he was suffering from severe muscle aches and had been prescribed pain medication.