Paul Jacob

And note, in fairness, that this phony poultry pardoning routine is also borrowed from past administrations — in one report going back to the first President Bush, officially, and back to John F. Kennedy in practice.

Am I making a mountain of dressing out of a molehill of cranberry sauce?

Perhaps, but the truth remains that the politicians who run our federal government are as two-faced as Dorian Gray. They publicly trot out visages as if from Grant Wood and Norman Rockwell, while privately exhibiting Francisco Goya and Hieronymous Bosch.

Our federal solons told us we had no choice but to make the sacrifice of waging two wars, but then refused to propose any sacrifice to pay for the wars — either by cutting any other spending that might upset politically important factions or to suggest a tax hike that would most certainly upset us all. They have the ill-conceived “courage” to instead send the bills to children as yet un-conceived.

Presidents Obama and Clinton correctly chose, in my view, to send their children to extremely expensive private schools. But I am troubled by the fact they both opposed allowing less well-to-do parents use of their tax dollars to opt for a better private school for their children.

Or what about the recent controversy over airport scanners and TSA pat-downs (otherwise known as pornography and sexual molestation)? The public is subjected to these assaults on our liberties, but high-ranking government officials are, of course, exempt from such indignities.

We might as well add rank hypocrisy to Washington’s holiday traditions. But it runs deeper than symbolic acts at symbolic times. It’s not just about turkey gobblers, gobblers of turkey, and the paucity of vegans in the White House.

Still, it would be great to have a president who would slaughter, stuff, roast and eat the bird — or, if granting a pardon, go vegetarian.

Now, pass the cornbread.

Paul Jacob

Paul Jacob is President of Citizens in Charge Foundation and Citizens in Charge. His daily Common Sense commentary appears on the Web and via e-mail.