As inexplicably good as McCain's prospects look, the actions of the incumbent administration can hardly be considered a vote of confidence. They are kicking off what I can only assume will be a five-month flurry of scorched-earth policymaking in anticipation of the GOP becoming scarce in Washington.

On Monday Our Leader's Faithful announced that they are radically reinterpreting the Endangered Species Act. And in this instance "reinterpreting" means "pretending like it doesn't exist and gutting whatever meager requirements it imposed on the hallowed Free Market." To make a long story very short, the new rules will take those pesky "scientists" out of the regulatory process and allow federal agencies to decide for themselves whether or not highways, dams, or other engineering projects will endanger protected plants or animals. Some Department of Interior employee with a lingering conscience leaked revealing documents to the press over the weekend.

Look, I could waste time talking about why this is stupid** and telling you things you already know. I could use worn metaphors (fox:henhouse, inmates:asylum, etc) to tell the story of more typical right wing bullshit, failing to raise even the protest from a public that is evenly split between thinking "Yeah, fuck animals!" and being too tired to fight it after seven years of this. Nothing new.

Instead let's just marvel at the official start of Operation Salt the Earth, a five-month, middle-fingers-extended sprint to dismantle as much of the skeletal remains of the regulatory state as possible before handing over the keys. Either McCain will win and find things to his liking or, ideally for the GOP, Obama will win and spend four years absolutely drowning under the mountain of debt and stumbling around the rubble of what used to be a government. But this will be exciting. What treasured principle will be the next to go? The anticipation is killing me!

**(If they weren't so goddamn stupid, they'd realize that all this will do is quintuple the number of lawsuits, dramatically increasing the costs to government and grinding the Federal courts to a halt. If. Like if the queen had a dick she'd be the king.)