A few news reports in national media the past couple of weeks have made it clear how truly incompetent Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is at his job.

Between being held in contempt by a judge for his “dismissive conduct” over approving oil driling permits in the Gulf, and a Washington Post story on the low view in which the Obama administration holds him, we think it's time he go.

Even President Clinton joined the chorus of Salazar unenthusiasts in bashing his “ridiculously slow” permitting approval process.

Not that we are big fans of the Obama administration, but we do like a functioning and effective government, no matter what party is in charge. 

When you are cited by administration officials above all other Cabinet officials as incompetent, and a disappointment, then you no longer have the cache to get things done, and it's time to leave. 

With gas prices racing to see how fast they can get to $4 a gallon, a competent and respected Interior Secretary is even more important.

Oil and gas drilling permits must be processed in a timely fashion, taking into account environmental and safety factors. Salazar has been such a bumbling idiot over oil shale development that now an Estonian company has been able to become a world leader in oil shale.

With an estimated 3 trillion barrels in the American West, what's the rush?

Maybe back on his ranch he can take his good ol' time making decisions, but in an economy gasping for breath and utter chaos in the Middle East, a clear domestic energy policy must be put forward. Rising oil prices raise the cost for virtually every good and service, and they have the ability to kill this burgeoning economic recovery in its infancy. Failure here is simply not permissible. 

Salazar's new half-baked attempt at permit approval is a complete sham. Michelle Malking points our in her column today that even the “new” permits approved recently are just re-hashed old requests, with one dating back to 1985. That is not leadership. That is a copout. 

Part of leadership is knowing when your time is up, your capital spent, and your effectiveness diminished. That's when it's time to call it quits and head home.

Come home, Salazar. 

Your brother is here already, and would no doubt leave the lights on.