The Office of the First Lady is a boondoggle and an offense to women. Let’s shut it down.


Just how bad is America’s underemployment crisis, in which college grads toil in dead-end jobs that don’t even require higher education, much less advanced degrees?

Consider this: The country’s leading health-and-nutrition buttinsky has not just one but two Ivy League diplomas and earned over a quarter-of-a-million dollars back in 2006, before the Great Recession destroyed the hopes and dreams of entire generations, including those not yet born. Now she makes no salary at all and provides diet-and-exercise information that doesn’t even require a GED.

I speak of course of First Lady Michelle Obama, whose bold new initiative aims to get Americans to drink more…water. “Water is so basic,” Mrs. Obama told residents of Wisconsin’s Watertown (a coincidence, I’m sure). “And because it is so plentiful, sometimes we just forget about it amid all the ads we watch on television and all the messages we receive every day about what to eat and drink….The truth is, water just gets drowned out.”

Screw “Let’s Move,” Mrs. Obama’s previous crusade, which was designed to make us exercise. Now it’s time for “Let’s Drink.” But only water. Even in this economy – and despite ubiquitous government surveillance, constant rumors of war, and the slim but real possibility that any of us might accidentally show up on her husband’s secret kill list.

Can we please make it stop? And by it, I don’t just mean Mrs. Obama’s seemingly non-stop nagging and noodging about our weight. (In 2010, she transformed the South Lawn into a fitness boot camp for the White House Easter Egg Roll.)

And I don’t just mean her high-profile faux pas, such as when she showed up to dish out food to the homeless while sporting a pair of $540 sneakers. Or her pricey Christmas displays whose extravagance calls to mind both Marie Antoinette and Nancy Reagan.

No, I mean the entire Office of the First Lady, which consists of about two dozen people whose salaries are paid for by taxpayers. Isn’t there a budget crisis going on? Money is supposed to be so tight at the federal level that White House tours have been canceled and the president is down to employing just two (count ‘em) calligraphers. And yet we can afford a publicly subsidized entourage for the First Lady?