Jokers in the statehouses
He delivered a nice punch to the solar plexus the other day in a Bee opinion piece on licensing — creating rules without reasons.
His point: Do we need to license lawyers? Yeah, probably. Real estate agents, maybe. But dog groomers and interior designers. Really?
Yup, two pieces of legislation in Sacramento would do just that. Walters sees it as another way to restrict existing businesses, curry favor with special interests and, inevitably ,drive new business out of state.
For example, AB 2482 by San Francisco Assembly Member Fiona Ma would create state licensing of interior designers, with a grandfather clause exempting certain groups.
As Walters put it: “If an interior designer botches a job — painting a wall magenta instead of puce or some such — it’s not a matter of life and death, and a dissatisfied customer has recourse in courts.”
Want some other examples of tax dollars — and scintillas of good sense — being squandered?
When commentator Rush Limbaugh turned the national floodlight on public funding of contraception, some abortion-rights legislators in several statehouses showed they too could color way outside the lines. To wit, these measures, published in the National Journal and the liberal blog Think Progress:
— Requiring a cardiac stress test and a psych screening from a sex therapist before authorizing a prescription for erectile dysfunction medication (Cleveland state Sen. Nina Turner). Or, in Virginia, a cardiac stress test and a digital rectal exam for the same RX (Sen. Janet Howell).
— Men who wasted sperm on non-procreative activities would be punished, their deeds construed as actions against an unborn child (Oklahoma Sen. Constance Johnson).
Those non-California measure went nowhere. Still, satire, the knucklehead factor, pandering for attention (beyond playing to campaign benefactors) all are thriving in the DNA of today’s politics.