Posts Tagged regulation

An Homage to Hummer

Penn Jillette has a great  op-ed at the Wall Street Journal about the passing of the Hummer.

Hummers are stupid and wasteful and if they go away because no one wants to buy one, that’ll be just a little sad. It’s always a little sad to lose some stupid. I love people doing stupid things that I’d never do—different stupid things than all the stupid things I do. It reminds me that although all over the world we humans have so much in common, so much love, and need, and desire, and compassion and loneliness, some of us still want to do things that the rest of us think are bug-nutty. Some of us want to drive a Hummer, some of us want to eat sheep’s heart, liver and lungs simmered in an animal’s stomach for three hours, some us want to play poker with professionals and some of us want a Broadway musical based on the music of ABBA. I love people doing things I can’t understand. It’s heartbreaking to me when people stop doing things that I can’t see any reason for them to be doing in the first place. I like people watching curling while eating pork rinds.

But if any part of the Hummer going belly-up are those government rules we’re putting in on miles per gallon, or us taking over of GM, then I’m not just sad, I’m also angry. Lack of freedom can be measured directly by lack of stupid. Freedom means freedom to be stupid. We never need freedom to do the smart thing. You don’t need any freedom to go with majority opinion. There was no freedom required to drive a Prius before the recall. We don’t need freedom to recycle, reuse and reduce. We don’t need freedom to listen to classic rock, classic classical, classic anything or Terry Gross. We exercise our freedom to its fullest when we are at our stupidest.

Read the whole thing here.

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Feds vs Salt

The Federal government is now taking it upon itself to regulate how much salt you get in your food.

The Washington Post reports:

The Food and Drug Administration is planning an unprecedented effort to gradually reduce the salt consumed each day by Americans, saying that less sodium in everything from soup to nuts would prevent thousands of deaths from hypertension and heart disease. The initiative, to be launched this year, would eventually lead to the first legal limits on the amount of salt allowed in food products. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Parable of the Referee

Dr. Zero illustrates the fallacy of the government acting as a “competitor” in the health care or any other market, by way of another parable:

Far from opposing all regulation, I maintain that clearly written, honestly enforced, minimally intrusive laws are both just and essential for wealth creation. A nation’s wealth lies in transactions between its citizens, and the pace of those transactions would be greatly reduced if consumers had no confidence in providers. Shopping malls would be considerably less active, if the shoppers had to assume every food product was potentially poisonous, every piece of consumer electronics could explode, and all of the merchants were thieves. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Next Target: The Internet

Now that the Democrats have passed their abomination in an effort to control the medical industry, they’re looking at the internet and licking their chops.

Democratic Representative Ed Markey writes a piece at Politico calling for Net Neutrality — because nothing will help the internets more than getting the government to tax and regulate it and use the money to pay for high-speed access for other people. Read the rest of this entry »

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Reconciliation, Deem-and-Pass, the CBO, and Obamacare Smackdown

There’s just so much juicy stuff on Obamacare out there, I don’t know where to begin.

Let’s start by looking at that CBO report on Obamacare, and what Obamacare will actually cost. Kevin Glass at Townhall brings up some of the budgetary manipulations that were used in the CBO report to make Obamacare look better than it is: Read the rest of this entry »

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New York Cracks Down on “Smoke-easies”

From Jacom Sullum at Reason Magazine:

New York City is cracking down on “smoke-easies,” bars and clubs that let their customers light up despite a municipal edict that forbids such accommodation …  Because many of the targeted night spots are defended by nearly impregnable barriers of coolness, the health department “has deputized a team of inspectors—many of them younger and hipper-looking than the stereotypical bureaucrat—to work into the wee hours, posing as patrons and hunting for tolerance of smoking by clubs’ employees.” Read the rest of this entry »

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How Government Spending Harms Private Investment

Damon Root at Reason Magazine references Independent Institute economist Robert Higgs, who argues that government spending and economic intervention harms development of the private sector economy. Higgs presents a solid case against government interference in the economy and Keynesian economics in general. Read the rest of this entry »

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Drugs, Organ Trade, and Media Hype has a 30-minute segment from John Stossel’s show on Fox Business featuring some of the heavy-hitters from Reason Magazine:

On March 4, 2010, Jacob Sullum, Nick Gillespie and Virginia Postrel appeared on a special episoode of Fox Business Network’s Stossel devoted to prohibition to discuss drug laws, ridiculous media scare stories, and legalizing markets in human organs.

Approximately 30 minutes.

With a discussion involving recreational drugs and trafficing in human organs, how can you go wrong?

I can’t embed it, so follow the link to see the video.

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When Food Nazis Strike: The New York Salt Ban

Never underestimate the desire of Progressives to control your lives in any and every way possible. The core of Progressivism is the notion that Progressive are a super-intelligent intellectual aristocratic elite, and therefore they know what’s best for you better than you do, since you are an uneducated, unenlightened, unsophisticated rube. So they will fight to use the force of law to compel you to behavior that they are sure is better for you than whatever you may want for yourself, because their extreme 133tness gives them the right to tell you what to do.

So in New York, we get this:

“No owner or operator of a restaurant in this state shall use salt in any form in the preparation of any food for consumption by customers of such restaurant, including food prepared to be consumed on the premises of such restaurant or off of such premises,” the bill, A. 10129, states in part. Read the rest of this entry »

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Six Groups Who Benefit from Drug Prohibition

Reason TV presents an interview with California Judge Jim Gray discussing drug prohibition, and who really benefits from it.

In 1992, Jim Gray, a conservative judge in conservative Orange County, California, held a press conference during which he recommended that we rethink our drug laws. Back then, it took a great deal of courage to suggest that the war on drugs was a failed policy.


Judge Jim Gray is a spokesman for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) is the author of Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed and What We Can Do About It: A Judicial Indictment of the War on Drugs.

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