From Gregg Easterbrook's blog at tnr.com:
WHEN THE GULFSTREAM JUST ISN'T ENOUGH
Rumor holds that Boeing has built some BBJs with full bedrooms, king beds, and full-sized shower stalls. It would be nice, maybe, to think that a few lucky, glamorous people were using king-bed luxo-planes for wild airborne sex. The more likely reality--beyond the improbability of nooky when airsick--is that grotesquely overpaid executives are sitting alone in the flying bedroom suites, lonely, surfing the Internet and wondering what else they could buy to make themselves feel important.
The piece doesn't so much take exception with the existence of BBJs/ACJs, of course, but rather the public companies that buy them. Ironically enough, outgoing Boeing CEO Condit was pictured just last week in the New York Times Magazine in the Boeing BBJ.
Boeing boss Philip Condit resigned yesterday, and they are toasting with Champagne lattes in Seattle--Condit is the guy who moved Boeing headquarters from the Rain City to the Windy City, Chicago. Boeing fortunes have been rocky pretty much since the moment of the move; the aerospace gods may be punishing the company for turning its back on the city and the workers that made it great.
Anyway, it's a brief, amusing, relatively thought-provoking piece. To this uninformed observer, an entire 737 to oneself, or a small group of top executives, does seem like overkill. (Now, for a company like say, DaimlerChrysler, an all-J 737 would probably make quite a bit of sense.) If I were running a company, I could probably come up with some better ways to spend that money. But who knows, maybe that's why I'm not running one