President Barack Obama’s decision to ban oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and the federal government’s bureaucratic delays are exacerbating the nightmares already tormenting the torn region.

Now, in a bitter twist of irony, Obama’s surgeon general, Regina Benjamin, this week visited the Gulf to warn residents about the mental health problems caused by oil spill-related stress (that her boss is likely making worse).

See if you can connect the dots on this one:

  1. President Obama’s moratorium on oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico is causing job losses and financial hardship throughout the region.
  2. The federal government’s unnecessary delays are making environmental and economic protection throughout the Gulf region impossible.
  3. President Obama’s appointee, Kenneth Feinberg, still has not distributed any of the $20 billion meant to aid those suffering financial hardship from the oil spill.
  4. Job losses and financial stress related to the BP oil spill are reportedly causing mental health problems for people throughout the Gulf.
  5. President Obama’s Surgeon General Regina Benjamin visited Alabama and warned that stress and sadness caused by oil spill-related financial strife could develop into serious mental health problems.

In short, President Obama took executive action to halt oil drilling, is thereby causing folks to be out of work, is overseeing a bureaucracy that is slowing relief efforts, and is now having his surgeon general warn people about the dangerous effects of the very problems he’s causing.

There are solutions to the problem that won’t require psychotherapy: lift the ban on drilling and cut the red tape.