The Washington Post

GOP Leader McCarthy to Forest Service: Don’t tell me how to make a s’more

S’mores at the Antoniades campsite in Greenbrier State Park.
(Christina Breda Antoniades for The Washington Post)

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy has finally pinpointed what’s wrong with our federal government: It dictates how honest Americans roast their marshmallows.

McCarthy sent a memo to House GOP members Thursday ostensibly hoping to fire up the caucus before their return to Washington next week. And caught in the line of fire? The U.S. Forest Service.

“I don’t know if you caught this, but last Friday the Forest Service published an article about how to roast marshmallows. Tips included using a roasting stick of at least 30 inches in length and substituting fruit for the chocolate and slices of angel food cake for graham crackers,” McCarthy wrote in a section of the memo obtained by the Loop.

First they mandate health care, and now they want change to s’mores?!

“This perfectly captures what is wrong with our government. Hard-earned tax dollars supporting bureaucrats who can’t pass up an opportunity to tell us how to live our lives,” McCarthy continues. “For the things that government is supposed to do – like confront terrorist groups – we don’t have a strategy, but for things Americans are supposed to be able to do for themselves – like figuring out the best ingredients for s’mores – government bureaucrats have that figured out.”

Yes, instead of blog posts on marshmallow safety, the flak at the U.S. Forest Service should hightail it to the Situation Room to help develop a plan to fight ISIS.

But it seems McCarthy was not alone in his outrage over the blog post written last week by a staffer to commemorate National Roasted Marshmallow Day and offer safety and health tips for campfire gatherings.

The comments section on the blog include these observations:

“I am ashamed that the Forest Service is wasting our taxpayer money on drivel such as this. Do you think that all Americans are imbeciles? The waste is at the top of every agency of government!”

“I’ve been doing it wrong. I should have been wrapping the marshmallow in kale and cooking it while donning a level A fire suit. Thanks gov’ment.”

“Why don’t you just leave us alone and let the kids have the treats we have all enjoyed for nearly 100 years? Nobody ever died from eating a s’more!”

For the budget-conscious, Tiffany Holloway, spokeswoman for the Forest Service, assured us that the photos featured on the blog were taken for free by a volunteer and that the post took the government employee less than 45 minutes to write.

Okay, we admit the Forest Service post does veer into overbearing nanny territory: “Grill thin slices of pineapple and substitute chocolate for the sweet, warm fruit…You’re still having campfire fun, but the focus is on a healthier evening snack.”

But for rallying the Republican base, it’s no Obamacare.

Colby Itkowitz is the lead anchor of the Inspired Life blog. She previously covered the quirks of national politics and the federal government.



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