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    A friend wrote, saying that she wasn't sure of the definition of tyranny.  So, I thought I'd send my thoughts to her and everyone on my email list.

     As I write, I am enjoying the most delicious mug of coffee.  I am also vaping, the term used for using an ecig.  Later, I am going to collect the trash bags from around the house and, of course, the recyclables.  And I have both dishes and laundry to wash.  I don't think I am or will be breaking any laws.
     I'm not trying to be funny.  I've heard that coconut oil has been banned from being used to make popcorn at movie theaters.  (If this isn't true, hurrah!!)  It turns out that coconut oil is actually a healthy oil.  But a group of people decided it was bad and outlawed its use.

     It was not that long ago that coffee was thought to be unhealthy.  And I suspect that ecigs will soon be denounced.

     And about the trash, I remember an especially upsetting trash collection.  It was awhile back.  At the time, my roommate's father had recently died.  My roommate brought home one red rose from the funeral.  When it died, he put it in the garbage can.  When I arrived home later that day, I found the empty garbage can in my front lawn with the single dead rose laying beside it.  It was illegal to put any part of a plant in the garbage can!

     My definition of tyranny: 

ordinary acts become illegal.

     My nephew used to have a full time job.  Then the "affordable health care act" defined full-time employees as working 30 hours a week.  Because most employers are rational, my nephew's hours were cut to under 30 hours a week.  What other tidbits are hidden in the law that will effect citizens who are simply trying to support themselves and their families?  Apparently the "act" is very long and complicated.

     . . . It won’t benefit the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws are so voluminous that they cannot be read or so incoherent that they cannot be understood. Or if they are repealed or revised before they are promulgated or are changed so frequently that no man who knows what the law is today can guess what it will be tomorrow. . . #62 [15]*
     For people who foresee its consequences, every new regulation that affects commerce or property value creates a new opportunity, based on the toils and cares of their fellow citizens.  When this happens, laws are made for the few not for the many. #62[16]*

Reducing regulations is a goal of the new administration.  Just for fun, I found some of the horrible regulations from around the country.

The state of Texas now requires every new computer repair technician to obtain a private investigator’s license.

The city of Philadelphia now requires all bloggers to purchase a $300 business privilege license.  The city even went after one poor woman who had earned only $11 from her blog over the past two years.  

 The state of Louisiana says that monks must be fully licensed as funeral directors and actually convert their monasteries into licensed funeral homes before they will be allowed to sell their handmade wooden caskets.

In the state of Massachusetts, all children in daycare centers are mandated by state law to brush their teeth after lunch.  In fact, the state even provides the fluoride toothpaste for the children.

If you attempt to give a tour of our nation's capital without a license, you could be put in prison for 90 days.

Federal agents recently raided an Amish farm at 5 A.M. in the morning because they were selling "unauthorized" raw milk.

In Lake Elmo, Minnesota farmers can be fined $1,000 and put in jail for 90 days for selling pumpkins or Christmas trees that are grown outside city limits.

A U.S. District Court judge slapped a $500 fine on Massachusetts fisherman Robert J. Eldridge for untangling a giant whale from his nets and setting it free.  So what was his crime?  Well, according to the court, Eldridge was supposed to call state authorities and wait for them do it.

In the state of Texas, it doesn't matter how much formal interior design education you have - only individuals with government licenses may refer to themselves as "interior designers" or use the term "interior design" to describe their work.

Deeply hidden in the 2,409-page health reform bill passed by Congress was a new regulation that will require U.S. businesses to file millions more 1099s each year.  In fact, it is estimated that the average small business will now have to file 200 additional 1099s every single year.  Talk about a nightmare of red tape!  But don't try to avoid this rule - it is being reported that the IRS has hired approximately 2,000 new auditors to audit as many of these 1099s as possible.

The city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin makes it incredibly difficult to go out of business.  In order to close down a business, Milwaukee requires you to purchase an expensive license, you must submit a huge pile of paperwork to the city regarding the inventory you wish to sell off, and you must pay a fee based on the length of your "going out of business sale" plus a two dollar charge for every $1,000 worth of inventory that you are attempting to sell off.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is projecting that the food service industry will have to spend an additional 14 million hours every single year just to comply with new federal regulations that mandate that all vending machine operators and chain restaurants must label all products that they sell with a calorie count in a location visible to the consumer.


*The Federalist Papers: Modern English Edition Two, Paper #62, Mary E Webster, 2008

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