Let me get this straight: flying an Air Force One around lower Manhattan with a fighter plane chasing it, which scared the pants off the locals (I wonder why?) was a photo session, to get a picture of the airplane near the Statue of Liberty?
Never mind the idiot who thought it would be a good idea not to tell anyone about this (rather than inviting everyone out to watch and have an ice cream cone in Battery Park); how many dozens of thousands of dollars were spent flying actual airplanes around instead of neatly Photoshopping a picture of the airplane into a picture of New York Harbor?
Look at the picture in Kevin’s post. The plane has really nice sharp edges. Nothing from the background has to overlap it. The shadow of the aircraft doesn’t show (though that would be a simple matter to add). There’s no hair, foliage, or fuzz to mess with. You could make this precious photograph with scissors and paper!
If we still had golden fleece awards, this exercise would get one with a cherry on top, a sterling example of waste and abuse in government occasioned by men wanting to play with big noisy toys instead of a quiet computer. And no, the photoshopped montage would not be a fraud; no-one is presenting the old one as evidence that Air Force One really did fly by Mt. Rushmore on such and such a day.