The Obamas threw an epic Halloween bash in 2009 and we’re only just now discovering how over-the-top the bash was — and how complicit media was in keeping the White House’s secret. After all, White House staff was “concerned” that the extravagant bash would appear tone-deaf to unemployed Americans, hundreds of thousands of whom are leaving the workforce entirely as new jobs are scarce and businesses are stretched thin. But is the story what it seems?
The White House has thrown so many over-the top parties and the First Lady has come under fire from the President’s advisers for her expensive tastes, so the initial reaction to hearing of yet another extravagant White House party is anger. But was the Halloween bash like the other White House parties? Was it like the party with Paul McCartney that the Obamas enjoyed while the Gulf struggled with an oil spill? Or the party the White House threw when America had its credit rating downgraded?
If media reports are to be believed, the Halloween bash was “staged“/thrown by Tim Burton and Johnny Depp. Security for the event would cost the public, but (I assume) comparatively no more than the cost of the annual Easter egg roll or other observances.
The point of the question isn’t to excuse the Obamas’ past irresponsibility in presentation; they lead one of the most tone-deaf administrations (Camelot style in a Carter economy, after all). The point is that this event, from my understanding, was for, and attended predominately by, military members and their families. This party is easier to justify, and features a better guest list, than the previous devil-may-care variety. I don’t want to discourage Hollywood from doing something nice for our soldiers when 99% of the movies they make about them portray them as monsters. The last time Johnny Depp dabbled in politics he called the country a “big dumb puppy.” A good deed like footing the bill (assumedly sans Secret Service, other security) for a bash thrown in honor of military families deserves some positive reinforcement by way of kudos, if this report is true.
There is still the pesky question of why the White House and media in attendance kept all of this quiet.
The White House press corps was allowed to report on more modest festivities earlier that day for Washington-area school children, but did not release details of the more glamorous festivities that occurred later for what was the Obamas’ first Halloween in office in 2009.
The blame will be put on you — instead of where it belongs: on an administration that has thrown, at the public’s expense, so many parties, taken so many vacations, and has been so decidedly opaque (for the most “transparent administration ever”). The White House owns the expectation is has created by precedence. Hollywood directors, actors, and their deeds are irrelevant to the discussion, but they will be used as deflection and later, an ally.Loesch's article is just more falsehood-based Obama-hating red meat to her readers.
Who else owns the expectation? The media. The public has to play the guessing game, citizen journalists have to assume the responsibility of hunting down fact, because MSM either cannot or will not themselves.
Of course, it is just your standard misplaced lies about "Obama spending money foolishly while Bush spent it wisely" perpetrated by the right-wing media liars club. They also scream about vacations taken by either Barack and/or Michelle Obama, while ignoring Ronald Reagan's, both Bush 41 and Bush 43's, and even Bill Clinton's vacations. In fact, Bush 43 took more vacations than Obama has ever done. They also attack the First Lady Michelle for being what a typical First Lady's job is. Answer to all these asinine personal attacks on the Obama Family: the fact that they are Black, intelligent, and members of the Democratic Party.
The Huffington Post reported in 2010 that other Presidents prior to Obama have also done Halloween parties at the White House:
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama on Saturday doled out presidential M&Ms and dried fruit mixes to more than 2,000 trick-or-treaters, marking their Halloween at a White House event partly aimed at honoring military families.
Dressed as superheroes, pirates, fairies and skeletons, the kids came in with their parents from Maryland, Virginia and Washington D.C., lining up at the orange lit White House.
The Obamas smiled, chatted and passed out cellophane goody bags that were also filled with a sweet dough butter cookie made by White House pastry chef Bill Yosses and a National Park Foundation Ranger activity book. Mrs. Obama wore furry cat ears and a leopard-patterned top.
Over the years, the winter holidays have been the ones to get the full treatment at the White House, with Christmas trees and tinsel all around.
The Obamas are not the first, though, to show Halloween spirit.
President George H.W. Bush and first lady Barbara Bush hosted 500 children on Halloween in 1989, loading them up with fun loot but also teaching them about the dangers of drugs. The kids came decked out in costumes; some Secret Service agents came dressed as clowns.
In the Clintons' first year in the White House, the Great Pumpkin returned. A huge orange jack-o'-lantern was formed around the front entrance to the White House, with the front door to the mansion serving as the middle tooth. The first couple's daughter, Chelsea, was 13 at the time and the house was stuffed with pumpkins.
During the Nixon administration, first daughter Tricia hosted parties for underprivileged children, according to the White House Historical Association. And plenty of other first families got festive for Halloween.
No telling what kind of goblins might pop up this year, although stories of ghosts – especially Abraham Lincoln's – are woven into White House history.
A Reuters article from October 31st, 2009 has what really happened:
The White House glowed pumpkin orange on Saturday when the Obama family turned 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue into Halloween central, complete with a giant stuffed spider dangling from a web above its front door.CNN, which is Loesch's current employer, also has more details (article published on Halloween 2009):
More than 2,000 local area children and their families were invited for the traditional trick-or-treat event.
The Obamas spent about 30 minutes handing out cellophane bagfulls of boxed red, white and blue M&M’s. The boxes bore the presidential seal. Also tucked in was a home-baked orange-glazed cookie and, in a nod to Michelle Obama’s efforts to promote healthy food, dried apricots and cranberries.
The president didn’t wear a costume for his first Halloween in the White House. Michelle Obama went as a cat woman, complete with leopard-print top and furry ears on a headband. Daughters Malia and Sasha were there for the fun, but were not stuck with any candy line duties.
The scene was worthy of a Hollywood extravaganza. Bubble machines blanketed the North Portico, the ceremonial entrance to the White House. Pumpkins, some carved and candle lighted, lined the marble steps. Behind Obama stood a white-helmeted storm trooper character from “Star Wars,” along with the film’s Chewbacca, the hairy, apelike “wookie.”
WASHINGTON (CNN)– President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama are celebrating their first Halloween at the White House by inviting Washington area students and military families to trick or treat.
According to the White House, up to 2,000 kids between the ages of 6 and 14 years old are expected on the grounds of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Saturday evening.
Just a couple days ago, The Huffington Post reported that the Obama Adminstration held an Alice In Wonderland-themed party in 2009.
President Obama threw a star-studded, "Alice In Wonderland"-themed Halloween party at the White House in 2009, New York Times correspondent Jodi Kantor writes in her new book, "The Obamas."The party, parts of which were posted on the White House website and reported by Chicago Sun-Times' Lynn Sweet, saw the State Dining Room transformed into a Tim Burton-inspired fantasyland. It resembled the world of the filmmaker's impending Disney-distributed adaptation of the famous Lewis Carroll story, which was released in March 2010.
Kantor writes (via the NY Post) that Burton made up the room "in his signature creepy-comic style... He had turned the room into the Mad Hatter's tea party, with a long table set with antique-looking linens, enormous stuffed animals in chairs, and tiered serving plates with treats like bone-shaped meringue cookies... Fruit punch was served in blood vials at the bar. Burton's own Mad Hatter, the actor Johnny Depp, presided over the scene in full costume, standing up on a table to welcome everyone in character."
George Lucas, the book says, sent over the original Chewbacca costume for the occasion. Kantor also writes that the President and First Lady's daughters, Malia and Sasha, and their friends were entertained with a magic show in the East Room.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this item said that the White House attempted to keep the appearance of Burton and Depp from the press. Their attendance was reported at the time by a Tennessee paper and a Depp fan website.
Why does CNN continue to put this massive liar on the air?