Links for November 7, 2011: Lemonade stand license costs $50 per day; EU “bans” underage balloon inflation; others….

November 5, 2011
  1. I can’t get enough of these “cops bust lemonade stand” videos. This one actually tells you what the kids have to do to stay legal: Acquire a business license, food, and vendors permits at a cost of $50 a day, plus an extra $180 a year. What adult can afford those fees? … And it’s like….gee whiz? Where did all this unemployment come from? Don’t look too hard, people.

    And then…if a grown-up DID set up a lemonade stand, she couldn’t hire those girls. That would violate child labor laws. The girls are hosed!

    And don’t gimme this “We don’t know what’s in it,”crap. If the authorities, or anyone else for that matter, are so worried, then they should make the girls take a sip first before they buy some. If the girls vomit all over their shirts and keel over, then you know it’s no good. Isn’t that how tyrants do it?

  2. Actually not a bad way to look at it. Now consider how much work the government criminalizes through wage regulations and other red tape. …

  3. Official guidance notes: “For latex balloons there must be a warning that children under eight years must be supervised and broken balloons should be discarded.” Frank Furedi, professor of sociology at the University of Kent, warned that toy safety bans were part of a trend to micro-manage children’s lives at the expense of allowing them to explore, learn and have fun through play.

    “I would say that this is crackers but I sure children are banned from using them too. EU party poopers should not be telling families how to blow up balloons,” said the Ukip MEP.

    Omitting the most important fact of all, a citation to the actual legislation so that we may do our own research, is journalistic malpractice, IMO. Especially where the alleged regulation is as preposterous as this.

    The regulation is Directive 2009/48/EC. Quoted text in the article is not from the 37-page directive itself. Rather, it is from the 174 page “TSD Explanatory Guidance Document“. Further reading: European Commission, Enterprise and Industry: Toy Safety Directives; Europa, Summaries of EU Legislation: Toy safety.

    Ted Balaker at Reason made a big deal of the so-called ban in Reason.tv’s most recent “Nanny of the Month”</em installment. As far as I can tell, at least regarding balloons, the regulations require balloons to carry warning labels and to be designed in such a way so as to minimize the risk of choking and/or poisoning. It does not, as far as I can tell, make anyone into a criminal upon the inflation of a balloon by an unsupervised child. It’s still nannyism, but I don’t see the regulation as imposing such a broad and ominous ban.

  4. Kinda harsh, but kinda true. You’ll notice that this article was also the source of the above lemonade stand video.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.


Links for October 25, 2010: Interview with Marakay Rogers, Libertarian Candidate for Pennsylvania Governor; More “Quantitative Easing” to Come; others….

October 24, 2010

    Marakay Rogers (OurCampaigns.com)

  1. Not a great interview; It sticks mainly to some few libertarian talking points, but you won’t hear from her during the gubernatorial debate tonight.

  2. The BBC explains “quantitative easing”.

  3. For those who aren’t in the know, “quantitative easing” is doublespeak for printing money.

  4. Read the rest of this entry »


Links for October 4, 2010: Police Corruption in NY, How Many Stimuli Does It Take To Revive an Economy?, others….

October 3, 2010
  1. An absolutely chilling story of police corruption in New York City. Officers are pressured to reach arrest quotas by making illegal arrests while underreporting major crimes to make themselves look successful. They then go to disturbing lengths to intimidate an officer who does not perform. But first: what could happen to you if you make terroristic threats on facebook.

  2. You’ll hear proponents of government stimulus often say that the private sector is not creating jobs fast enough. Have any of them ever thought to ask why not? As it turns out, they’re afraid of something: the uncertain regulatory environment, of course. Read the rest of this entry »


Links for July 19, 2010: To Stimulate or Not To Stimulate; What Police Can Do; much, much more….

July 18, 2010

    Paul Krugman: Boost aggregate demand! Muahahaha!!!

  1. It’s good to hear Krugman speak and respond to questions. The thrust of this discussion is that the opposition to the stimulus is a visceral reaction, not an intelligent one. Although some guests early on questioned the empirical efficacy of the stimulus, we did really not hear from any Thomas E. Woodses or any Peter Schiffs who maintained, in quite an intellectual fashion, that the stimulus is simply bad economic policy. Krugman remarks toward the end that he doesn’t see stimulus jobs as “makework” jobs. I do not understand how this position can be honestly defended alongside the position that we now need government to “boost aggregate demand”, i.e. create demand where none existed before. What is the purpose of the stimulus if it is not to “make work”? If these were not “makework” jobs, we would do them anyway. We would not need an economic crisis as a pretense for passing $700 billion spending bills. For a response to the assertion that Roosevelt’s slashing of the deficits caused a recession in 1937, see this. For a response to the assertion that World War II spending lifted the U.S. economy out of the depression, listen here, starting at 32:17.  Read the rest of this entry »


Links for May 24, 2010: The War on Airline Carry-On Fees, Columbia Police Chief Wishes Marijuana Reform Movement Success, Thoughts on Oil, others….

May 23, 2010
  1. The fun part of being a libertarian is that you get to blame the government for all your problems. The hard part, and the part that drives people away from the ideology, is that you have to relinquish your sense of entitlement. No, you are not entitled as a matter of natural right to carry your luggage onto an airplane at no charge. The airlines are providing a service for you, and they have certain terms that you must either accept or reject. Who knows? The baggage charge might reward those who economize by reducing their overall ticket price…..

  2. The chief of police of Columbia, Missouri, where the now-viral video of a marijuana raid was filmed, wishes the marijuana law reform movement success. Read the rest of this entry »


links for 2010-02-16

February 17, 2010
  1. World Socialist Party (US) | Labor Theory of Value

    Looking for a simple, concise explanation of the theory, I find instead this litany of apologetics. Written almost entirely on the defensive, the article explains nothing about the Labor Theory of Value except why Marx scoffed at requests to explain it: — “if one wanted to ‘explain’ from the outset all phenomena that apparently contradict the law, one would have to provide the science before the science” (Collected Works vol. 43, p. 68). I don’t know if that explanation satisfies you, but I find it wanting. I think, ultimately, Marx uses the word “VALUE” as a term of art that means simply that part of an item’s existence attributable to the labor required to produce it. So, if I spent 50 man-hours making 50,000 turd sandwiches, Marx would “VALUE” those turd sandwiches at the going rate for 50 man-hours of labor. Sure, the labor theory of value makes sense in THAT context, but what about real life, in which we don’t always have the luxury of defining words as we please?

    Update: It has come to my attention after listening to a lecture on the opening chapter of Marx’s Capital that Marx believed that useless items had no value. He actually employed three terms of art, and what he saw as the relationships between them, to describe what a layman would call “value”. The terms are: use value, exchange value, and value. An explanation of this in the linked article would have been helpful.

  2. reason.tv | Don’t Get Hurt

    Fear of addiction and other harms resulting from prescription pain-killers is overblown, argues Ted Balaker at Reason. Read the rest of this entry »


links for 2010-02-10

February 11, 2010
  1. The Barr Code | Canadian Premier comes to US for heart surgery

    "This episode simply reflects the reality that procedures such as those which the Canadian provincial leader underwent — which are not always available elsewhere – are always readily available in the United States." —- The universal health care crowd would respond: "Yes, they are available….but only to the RICH!" To me, it always comes back to freedom of association. If you have money, and you can afford to pay for a procedure, then you should be allowed to.

  2. Mises Institute | Arguments Against Anarchy – Jarret B. Wollstein

    I've been on the fence between minarchism and anarchism for quite some time. Counter-arguments like this make the anarchist position sound sensible to me. This is the endgame of libertarian theory. We don't have to deal directly with this sort of issue until our other libertarian experiments work out as well as we expect them to. Those who are uncomfortable with jettisoning government altogether can rest assured that the Libertarian Party platform still accepts the validity of a minimal government maintained only to secure individual rights.