The widening IRS scandal has caught America's attention.
People of all political stripes are generally united in the correct belief that one of the most powerful government agencies should not be able to target Americans for closer scrutiny, and in some cases harassment, because of their political beliefs.
The collective response from America's coal industry could be, "Welcome to our world."
Coal has had a target on its back since President Obama took office. Some groups, the United Mine Workers Union in particular, blithely believed that since Obama was from a coal state (Illinois) that he would be in their corner.
What they failed to consider was the president's adherence to the environmental movement's mission to erase coal from the country's energy portfolio. The result has been an Environmental Protection Agency that has been openly hostile toward a legal and longstanding American business that provides about 40 percent of the nation's electric needs.
The warning signs were there. Consider then-candidate Obama's statement to the San Francisco Chronicle editorial board in January 2008:
"If somebody wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It's just that it will bankrupt them."
Back then, Obama was set on cap-and-trade legislation.
When that failed in Congress, his administration's EPA took over, imposing its own carbon reduction standards. Sierra Club executive director Michael Brune has said those new limits "will make it nearly impossible to build a new coal plant."
Meanwhile, the EPA has made it more difficult for the coal industry to get the necessary permits.