The reason the ad is so funny is that nobody thinks liberals such as Maddow would support anything like the Hoover Dam today. The Hoover Dam is a marvel. But by today’s green standards, it is a crime against nature. If you tried to build it, the Natural Resources Defense Council and Greenpeace would be in court tomorrow blocking it, with Ms. Maddow cheering them on.

Indeed, look at all the activists attacking the proposed construction of an oil pipeline from Canada to the Texas coast. It would create thousands of construction jobs and yet liberals oppose it for the usual petrophobic reasons. Ironically, liberals love building highways and bridges, but loathe making it affordable to drive on them…

Everyone in Washington should reread Jonathan Rauch’s 1994 book Demosclerosis, a term Rauch coined to describe “government’s progressive loss of the ability to adapt.” Thanks to the rise of interest-group liberalism, constituencies grow up around government programs and policies that do not benefit the general public. Obviously, these constituencies care more about their programs than the average voters do, so they make up for their low numbers with high intensity. The mohair subsidy is the number one priority of only one group of Americans: recipients of mohair subsidies. More significantly, organized labor makes up a tiny fraction of the workforce, but dictates vast swaths of labor policy in this country.