Just how do you plan to get to Washington, Mr. Lewis?

From the Utterly Ridiculous department comes this news story about Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis and an upcoming appearance in front of Congress.

Here’s the really silly part:

Lewis will attend the hearing, taking a train to D.C., a bank spokesman said. He declined to elaborate for security reasons. John Stumpf, the CEO of San Francisco-based Wells Fargo & Co., will fly commercial, a spokeswoman said. The CEOs of Detroit’s Big Three automakers were ridiculed for taking private jets to their recent appearances on Capitol Hill, where they asked the government for money.

As reporters, we’re taught to include a number of elements in any story.

But I must have been asleep in Journalism 101 when the professor told us that the mode of transport used by CEOs traveling to Washington to testify in front of Congress is one of those highly key elements.

In this instance, how Mr. Lewis is getting to Washington really isn’t critical to the overall story.

But thanks to the posturing and grandstanding of a few politicians in Congress, travel plans and modes of transport have become a key element to any story reporting on any business receiving loans or other financial assistance from the government.

Is it any wonder why Wichita’s own Big 3 are struggling to sell business jets?