American Elephants


The Urge to Regulate and Control Goes Too Far. by The Elephant's Child
January 13, 2013, 4:18 pm
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Freedom, Statism | Tags: , ,

danger_chainsawI just had to put two of those wafer-like batteries in one of those technological instruments that we are acquiring so many of. After it took me nearly 15 minutes just to get into the packaging, at the cost of two broken fingernails,  I looked at the back of the package for directions if any. Habit. The type was too small to read, even with my magnifying glass, in two languages, of course. On the back of each wafer battery was a white sticker with an unintelligible black blob, and more teeny type.

With my handy magnifying glass, I was able to determine that the blob was perhaps meant to indicate a small child with the customary slash through it, and the type said don’t feed the battery to the kid, in the customary legal language.

The nannies, many of whom are obviously lawyers, have gone too far with the CYA legalisms. All ordinary garden chemicals now come with labels that peel back to reveal 2 or more pages of instructions, also in teeny type. Six Point type is readable, four point is too small and if it gets less than that, forget it. Does anybody read labels anymore? Is a magnifying glass something that everyone has on hand? Of course not.

Congress or the EPA or the DOA or some bunch of bureaucrats have just determined that in order to save you from obesity, all restaurants must now provide calorie counts so that you will know that a Big Mac, a chocolate shake and french fries are fattening.

For Pizza restaurants the new requirements are a huge problem. They have hundreds of ingredients, and most fast-food places operate from a large lighted menu on the wall where you place your order. Do they all have regular menus at the table? They probably will now. The expense of redesigning a restaurant chain to comply with such requirements is, for a large chain, in the millions.

People don’t care. They know that a pizza with all the trimmings is not calorie free. Does anyone eat pizza every day? Those who do not know that fast food and fried food are higher in calories, are probably among those who don’t know what a calorie is or how many one should or should not consume. What about State Fair food? Do you suppose those who consume deep-fried Twinkies don’t know what they’re eating?

What the Nannies have done is to create contempt for directions. They are not helpful. Directions, for the most part, come in English and Spanish. Everybody else is out of luck. Most directions fall into the “Remove the baby before folding up the stroller” type. Buckets come with warnings that a baby might fall in. Those are the lawyer-nannies. Remove all possibilities of misuse so that nobody can sue. Although collections of warning labels can be pretty funny.

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