If you thought Gov. Rick Perry's Iowa ad about what a shame it is that gays and lesbians can openly die in combat while kids have to secretly meet in abandoned fallout shelters to merely discuss Christmas during school was the low point of the 2012 Election season so far, get a load of this:
Washington (CNN) -- President Barack Obama plans to ask Congress for the power to shrink the federal government, a White House official said Friday.
Obama plans to speak at 11:20 a.m. about his plans to make the federal government "leaner, smarter and more consumer-friendly," the official said.
The president's proposal includes plans to combine several agencies that focus on commerce and trade.
This transformational vision courtesy of the guy who voted for TARP as a senator, pushed an $800 billion stimulus that did squat (never forget that the stimulus failed by its proponents' own yardstick), passed a health-care bill that has managed to increase public and private sector spending even before going operational, and jacked the debt like nobody's business.
And then there's the one statement that he's made about where he wants to see federal spending go in a decade: The budget plan that he released in 2011, which envisions annual spending growing from its current $3.8 trillion or so to $5.7 trillion a year in 2021.
Puh-lease. Obama's late-breaking interest in shrinking the federal government or making it "leaner, smarter" carries about as much credibility as Kim Jong-il's treatises on opera. Which at least had dancing.
Not that there's anything wrong combining or killing certain agencies altogether. In fact, according to the latest Reason-Rupe Poll, 45 percent of us want to abolish or consolidatae the Department of Housing and Urban Development, 41 percent want the same for Energy, and 40 percent for the EPA. Check it out:
When a president who has shown no restraint in spending and growing the government rolls out a plan for a half-dozen bureaucrats to squeeze into a shared office, it's tough not to be cynical. This sort of election-year, phoney-baloney hand wave is precisely the sort of gesture that heardens the hearts and the ears of voters. Who, not surprisingly, are going independent in historic numbers.