Why Am I Surprised?

My expectations are never sufficiently low:

Lobbying Prohibitions Eased For Former Top Officials

The timing was perfect: On Nov. 23 — exactly three weeks after the election and as a flurry of top Bush administration officials announced their departures — the Office of Government Ethics declared that it was relaxing prohibitions on lobbying by former Cabinet secretaries and other top officials.

Until now, senior officials at Cabinet departments and agencies had not been allowed to lobby former colleagues for a full year after leaving office — a rule designed to prevent an obvious conflict of interest. But, in a notice in the Federal Register, the ethics office issued a new rule invoking its power to declare that “a former senior employee who served in a ‘parent’ department or agency is not barred . . . from making communications to or appearances before any employee of any designated component of that parent.”