I haven't been this surprised since that gal turned out to be a guy in "The Crying Game."
MSNBC resident schoolsmarm Rachel Maddow is full of surprises, isn't she? Just the other night, she said something that surely had Americans across the nation spitting out burgers, beverages and baby food (video clip after page break)
Maddow was describing President Obama's proposal to consolidate the Commerce Department and five other bureaucracies to eliminate -- ready for this? -- 1,000 jobs over the next decade through attrition. That's a whopping total of one hundred jobs a year, folks -- out of a federal workforce of 2.1 million employees.
After telling her audience how she has "a crush on NOAA" -- I kid you not -- along with the postal service, NYC subway system and -- again, no kidding -- Amtrak (Maddow and Michael Dukakis comprising the sole members of its fan club), Maddow said this about Obama's apparently not-so-obvious election year ploy --
Now, I don't know how the people at NOAA feel about potentially moving. I don't know about how all those various offices and their public servants feel about being reorganized like this. But from the outside looking in, this sort of reorganization does seem rational. At least the idea is, right? Shrinking and streamlining government to make it make more sense to the people who need to use it to get stuff done.
Yikes, what a mouthful. Wouldn't it be easier to say shrinking government makes sense? Especially now when it takes fully a quarter of our GDP to feed it, nearly that much in percentage terms above its pre-crash norm of 20-21 percent going back three decades.
OK, so it isn't quite Maddow parroting Reagan from his '81 inaugural -- "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem." Even so, it's a start. As the old Jedi saying goes, every journey of a thousand light years begins with a baby step.
Predictably, Maddow could not accurately describe how GOP leaders responded to Obama's bold plan to whittle government --
Republicans, naturally, have no idea what to do with this development. Republicans have been so busy screaming that President Obama must shrink government, so busy alleging that he's maniacally devoted to growing government whenever he can, that now that he is trying to shrink government, they've reacted by being sort of suspicious and not happy but they're not sure why they're not happy.
House Speaker John Boehner's spokesman released a statement today saying, "Given the president's record of growing government (Maddow adds here, "Not sure what he means there, they just use this as an epithet"), we're interested to learn whether this proposal represents actual relief for American businesses or just the appearance of it."
Sorry, Rach -- that wasn't an "epithet," this is indisputable fact. Uh, weren't you just saying that streamlining government makes sense? Maddow then cited Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's reaction through a spokesman -- " ... after presiding over one of the largest expansions of government in history, and a year after raising the issue in his last State of the Union, it's interesting to see the president finally acknowledge that Washington is out of control."
Here's Maddow on McConnell's response --
Mitch McConnell's spokesman put out a statement calling this development "interesting" but still accusing President Obama of growing government -- while he's proposing shrinking it!
Once again, Maddow confuses accusation with actual fact. All in dutiful service of a president who considers Maddow a soulmate, schmoozing with her more often than any other left-winger in media, The Daily Caller reports.