Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Freedom, Progressivism, Statism | Tags: Fear of Freedom, Regulatory Excess, The Control Freaks
“Americans love to laugh at ridiculous regulations.” So begins an article from The Economist on “Over-regulated America: The home of laissez-faire is being suffocated by excessive and badly written regulation.” That’s certainly true enough. The big story on the radio and on the internet was the saga of a 4-year-old’s pre-school lunch packed by her mother, and the arrival of the regulator who took away her lunch and gave the child three chicken nuggets and some veggies she wouldn’t eat.
The food-police bit is getting out of control. Yes, some parents may send their kids to school with Cheetos, but that is the business of the parent, not the government. Michelle Obama recently visited Little Rock Air Force Base to announced a new Pentagon obesity nutritional awareness campaign that will change nutrition standards across the services for the first time in 20 years. She wants them to eat their veggies. (You’ll notice this is a British paper). Actually, they should probably increase the protein in their diet instead, and add a few more miles to the daily run.
Mrs. Obama cited an Army study that says more than one-quarter of 17-24 year-olds are too overweight to serve in the military. [Doesn’t that say that she’s changing the nutrition of the military people who are NOT too overweight or they wouldn’t be in the service?]
The Economist picks up on some of the funnier regulations like the Railroad Administration insisting that trains have a “F” on the front so you can tell which end is which, and the children’s lemonade stands shut down because they hadn’t the proper licenses. But this is making light of a serious problem. The article is more concerned with Dodd-Frank, and the disaster of badly written regulations and over-regulation.
The Small Business Association and the Chamber of Commerce have been vocal about the extent to which small business, the engine of job growth, is being seriously harmed by excessive regulation, and the threat of regulation yet to come. One of the biggest problems is ObamaCare. Regulations are issued, complaints ensue, waivers are granted to some, not to others. Threats of increased taxes, increased regulation create a business climate in which potential employers are unwilling to risk taking on the extra cost of another employee.
There are roughly 330 million people in the United States. Why do Progressives think that they can write regulations to cover every aspect of human life and business — and believe that it will work? Why does Michelle Obama believe that she should direct the diet of 1.45 million troops a day at 1,100 military dining facilities and decide what America’s schoolchildren should eat. Yet the Obamas believed that America’s problems derived from a lack of regulation. Liberty is not a dirty word.
What has made America great is liberty— the freedom to invent and create and grow. To dream and to attempt, to work towards our own goals. The elites have always feared the “common people>”
“The clear lesson of history is that individual liberty, the basic underpinning of American society, requires constant defense against the encroachment of the state.”
“Freedom is, to be sure, frightening. There is no telling what values
someone will choose to hold. Decent and well-meaning
guardians of values were horrified by the monstrous principles
of the Declaration of Independence.
It is, of course, out of fear that the guardians preach
the inculcation of values, fear of knowledge and thought.”