Obama thought he’d cracked a joke during his SOTU (see video below) when he was commenting about the absurdity of many federal regulations. The one he cited defined spilled milk as oil.

Ha ha. He’s gonna fix that absurdity, right? Why else scoff at it publicly?

Yet when the BP oil spill happened, he let an even dumber regulation stand in the way of averting a disaster.

Within three days of the spill, the Netherlands offered the U.S. government ships equipped to handle a major spill.

But the offer was ignored or rejected, as we noted at the time.

Ironically, the superior European technology runs afoul of U.S. environmental rules. The voracious Dutch vessels, for example, continuously suck up vast quantities of oily water, extract most of the oil and then spit overboard vast quantities of nearly oil-free water. Nearly oil-free isn’t good enough for the U.S. regulators, who have a standard of 15 parts per million — if water isn’t at least 99.9985% pure, it may not be returned to the Gulf of Mexico.

So instead of cleaning the oil and returning nearly pristine water to the Gulf, the Obama administration stuck to its stupid rules.

Obama seemed to miss that punchline.