Saturday, September 4, 2010

Presidential Carpet

NPR recently broadcast of a story by Associated Press: Oval Office Makeover Has Comfy, More Modern Feel. It is such a strange read during this depressing time.
Every president eventually puts his own mark on the Oval Office, decoratively speaking, and the White House unveiled the Obama makeover on Tuesday, just hours before a major presidential speech on Iraq from his famous Resolute Desk (still there.) Obama had long been making small changes in the Oval Office, aided by California designer Michael Smith, but held off on a broader redesign until now, mindful of the nation's economic distress.

The White House wouldn't reveal the overall cost of the new look, but said in a statement that it was "in line with the amount spent by Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush on the redesigns of their Oval Office." It added that the funds came from the nonprofit White House Historical Association, through a contribution from the presidential inaugural committee.

NPR's broadcast mentioned the man-hour needed to make his brand of presidential carpet. But that information, perhaps deemed too sensitive, was no where to be found online.

I did more searching and found it on The Detroit News:

The Obama administration declined to divulge the cost of the office makeover but said it was comparable to what other presidents have spent. It took 30 craftsmen and more than 570 man hours to produce the rug at the Scott Group. The rug, installed last week, contains 25 percent recycled wool and uses natural colors and undyed thread as part of the office's all-natural theme.

If the average salary of those skilled works are $20/hour, that makes $11,400, not including design, material, machinery, and transportation costs. Excuse me! Every time, when we have a new owner of the Oval office, a whooping amount of expenses. I would have thought that 1600 Pennsylvania have changed the name to Château de Versailles!

I wonder what happened to the previous presidential rugs. I would have hoped that Obama would stop this insane practice of wasting of material and resources every four or eight years. I guess the audacity to hope, will always get disappointed.

Matthew Felix Sun's Drawing_7339
"Chairman" © Matthew Felix Sun

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