Senate Dems introducing the "Team USA Made in America Act of 2012." Seriously.

I’m having trouble typing this, because I absolutely cannot stop laughing — it’s just that absurd. But sadly, as ever, I only laugh to keep from weeping. I mean… is this real? Are they serious?

Yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said we should “burn” the Team USA uniforms that Ralph Lauren designed for the opening ceremonies of the Olympics, because they were manufactured overseas — just like 98 percent of the clothing purchased in America everyday. I thought it was just Harry Reid being Harry Reid, but apparently, the Senate Democrats are mounting a full-frontal legislative assault on this ostensible travesty of justice. …The term “fundamentally unserious” springs to mind:

Six U.S. senators put out a statement late Friday detailing the bill, saying it will require the committee to adopt a policy that ensures ceremonial uniforms are “sewn or assembled in the United States.”

“The U.S. Olympic Committee was 100 percent wrong to outsource the manufacturing of U.S. uniforms for the opening ceremony to China,” Sen. Bob Casey. D-Pa., one of the sponsors, said. …

The lawmakers introducing the bill signaled it would be applied to future Olympics, but continued to call on the Olympic Committee to “do the right thing for this summer’s team” by soliciting new, made-in-the-USA uniforms. …

But Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who is also sponsoring the new bill, called on the committee to use an American company, suggesting Rochester-based suit maker Hickey Freeman as an ideal candidate for the job. He also said the New York state firm would be “thrilled” to partner with Ralph Lauren provided Ralph Lauren wants to make the uniforms stateside.

Wow, guys. What with your sense of petty big-government interference in this privately-funded endeavor, with your appallingly misaligned priorities with the country in economic crisis, and with your clamorous disapproval of Republicans’ “show votes,” you’ve truly outdone yourselves.

I take umbrage — So. Much. Umbrage. — with politicians who imply that “protectionism” and “patriotism” are the same thing, because they aren’t. If we made everything in America, just for the sake of making everything in America, we would be vastly poorer. Think about it: What if you made and did everything for yourself, just for the sake of being self-sufficient? What if all of your food, clothing, shelter, tools, etcetera were the product of your own two hands, without any specialized employment in which you earned money to buy these things? How much more rich and well-off do you think you’d be? You wouldn’t, because obtaining things from wherever and whomever they are best, least expensively, and most efficiently produced is the most effective route to having more things, a.k.a economic growth. Pandering to faux populist outrage should not be on our legislative to-do list.