Wednesday 15 August 2012

Profiting From Making Everything Illegal

No matter how much the sane majority accept that prohibition doesn't work and is actually extremely dangerous - ample historical evidence is incapable of lying unlike those who deny it - there are still those who wander into the territory as if organised crime had never existed.

Illustrating this nicely is the 42 minute John Stossel film spotted by Sam Bowman at the ASI. There's no need to watch all of it if you're pushed for time, although I'd recommend you do as it details how destructive bans are on anything from kids selling lemonade in the US right through to criminalisation of drugs and prostitution.

Lives ruined, enjoyment curtailed, unintended consequences, individuals who claim to know better than you do, it's all there.

However, if you watch nothing else, please do scroll to 16:50 in the film and watch just four minutes or so until 21:20 as it refers to a case illustrating the racket in licensing which is at the root of most of the bans we are now doomed to face. It also cuts to the very basis of this blog's existence.

I wrote about the state use of licensing as a prohibition tool - with reference that day to the raw milk sales mentioned in Stossel's film - back in November 2010, and have done so many times since.
State officials will claim that they are acting purely in the interests of public health; that it's vital to protect consumers from the scary consequences of eating and drinking substances which haven't been treated as government demands. But, again, if the customer has accepted risk to be able to sample something different, why is there any need for intervention, let alone one involving such an invasive show of force?
There isn't, of course. What we see with these restrictions is always a mixture of satisfying corporate interests and assuaging public health tax troughers who need a campaign to hang their next salary claim from.

It's a redistribution of wealth from those who want to satisfy demand from a willing public, to those who would prefer the cash flows in their direction instead.

Under the guise of looking after you, a massive industry has arisen which has just one goal - filling their own pockets at your expense. It's why you are not allowed to trade between each other - even if you're quite willing to pay due taxes - without some state-funded intermediary ripping you off for a huge amount into the bargain and making your life that little bit less free for their own greed.

In the case of raw milk, they want the taxes, and get them. But it's not enough. They also want the licensing fees and they need to feed the public health community with funds that no-one in the original transaction has any interest in giving them except under the threat of imprisonment, and lobbying has ensured that corporate interests are protected under the same regime.

It's a system which often sees proudly left-leaning public health idiots batting on the same side as the industries they despise. Even Al Capone would applaud such a racket for its genius in lucratively exploiting the ignorance of both politicians and tax-leeching public health dullards, especially since I don't reckon any of them have any inkling that they are being played.

Take Simon Chapman, for example. He recently tweeted this image to ridicule America's stance on guns.

His angle is that it is absurd that guns are legal in the US, but cheeses are banned. Good point, Simon! I mean, who on Earth would get something as inoffensive as cheese banned?

Err, the public health racket would! As the video above proves conclusively, people like Simon Chapman are the problem here. He uses cheese as an example, but it's his hideous ilk who got cheeses banned in the first place on the pretext that the state should have ultimate jurisdiction over your body and the risks you are prepared to take.

Chapman - and others - regularly advance a defence of the nanny state with the motto "While you were sleeping last night the nanny state silently protected you". But while we are all sleeping he, and the dozy parliamentary tossers his kind are easily able to con, are ripping away our little pleasures and fundamental freedoms for financial gain.

And they condemn McDonald's for ruining lives for profit? Sheesh.


Mr A said...

Well said!

George Speller said...

Fox? Making sense for once :-)

Ann Sattley said...

Stossel did a follow-up to that video that featured yours truly in studio.

nisakiman said...

For me, the bit that epitomised the utter refusal of the self-righteous controllers to accept reality was when the State Prosecutor (who was anti-prostitution) was faced with the girls who work in a brothel. She just blindly stuck to her 'prostitution is slavery' dogma, even when faced with overwhelming evidence (in the form of the girls who worked in a legal brothel, and stated categorically that they liked their work) to the contrary. This is the mindset of the zealots of every stripe, and is why we who champion freedom face an uphill struggle. They are all the same. When faced with fact that goes against their ideology, they just put their fingers in their ears and cry "la la lala la, I can't hear you..."

Jonathan Miller said...

I think it is interesting that Nanny Chapman is claiming the credit for increased longevity in the current population. I suspect that longevity has more to do with increased mechanisation and improved healthcare - fewer men labouring in mines, on the roads or in the fields, faster access to sophisticated medical facilities. Given that much of the 'nanny' legislation has been introduced since 1980, the current wave of baby-boomers will have been largely unaffected by the low fat, low salt, low tar, unleaded regulations that are now in force.
I'd love to see his argument against the above point, though I would resent paying him, through my taxes, for the time it took him to write it.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Indeed. It's a running theme for bansturbators to claim credit for any tiny improvement however spurious it may be, while denying all unintended consequences as nothing to do with them ... however strong the case and damaging the consequence.

Heart attack miracles on one side, pub closures and illicit trade on the other for example.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Don't suppose you have a link, do you? :)