When your state becomes a petri dish for Republican wish-list legislation…. the kind of stuff you just knew these people would try if they ever got the whole package… a governor + total control of your statehouse … it’s like death in front of your eyes in slow motion.
I live in North Carolina, where we’ve just entered year 4 of this stuff, including legislation that would have established a state religion (ok as long as it ain’t WASHINGTON imposing it… right?)
Since rising sea levels courtesy of warming temperatures are a liberal myth, in 2012 it became illegal in North Carolina to scientifically predict future rising sea-levels. Only historical data may be used. It looks as though keeping your head in the sand literally is now policy. Stephen Colbert brought the issue to the attention of the country and by 2015 the ice was showing some signs of cracking!…. courtesy WUNC: North Carolina was ridiculed by news aggregators, traditional media, on social media and in op-eds. Now, almost three years later, the scientists have come back with a new report. It still predicts that sea levels will rise, but since it only looks 30 years out, the amount of rise is not anywhere near the levels predicted in the first report. More below-
My runner-up favorite North Carolina, We Gonna Take It Back idea is House Bill 693 which would require teens to get their parents’ consent before being tested for std’s… before treatment for sexually transmitted infections, birth control prescriptions, and pregnancy care. That gem died in the legislative womb, fortunately. Aborted in just a few weeks, the law was allegedly conceived to bring families closer together. Nothing bonds kids and parents more than no medical confidentiality mandated by the state. Haven’t these people ever seen Rebel Without a Cause? Do you think James Dean would have gotten permission from daddy to get a penicillin shot?
Coming in at Number One is the “Motorcycle Safety” law that morphed into restricting abortion access for women in North Carolina. It started out as a House bill that, upon passage, would increase penalties for violating a motorcyclist’s lane, forcing the driver to go off the road or change lanes. Who’d argue with that? Then… seemingly out of thin air… the cookie-cutter, standard anti-abortion rights crap appeared as part of the bill… the week before they had tried attaching the same garbage onto one of those “anti-sharia law” bills. Even the motorcycle-rights groups turned against their own desired idea due to the absurdity of the anti-abortion stuff. But it passed anyway and the governor signed it.
Out now to Arizona, where the Republicans are doing their level-best to live up to the Politician’s Cliche of getting the fiscal house in order not just by cutting income taxes for rich people and spreading out sales taxes on everything you can imagine because it’s “fairer.” They’re intent on getting rid of licensing requirements for all kinds of professions: landscape architects, geologists, assayers, driving school instructors, and yoga instructors. Always using the cover of “job creation,” Republicans like Rep. Warren Petersen (R-Gilbert) contend that “state licensing does not guarantee honesty or quality of work.” Does that glittering generality of nothingness apply to every licensed profession, like, oh, say doctors or lawyers or, um… let’s randomly pick real estate agents? Licensing them doesn’t guarantee honesty or quality either, but somehow they’re not on the list for deregulation. Representative Warren Peterson just happens to be VP Sales for VIP Homes and has owned a real estate brokerage for over a decade. No surprise… none whatsoever… that Peterson wouldn’t dream of deregulating whatever it is he’s involved in, fostering more competition. Just for fun now, let’s drill down specifically on one of the jobs actually targeted by the legislation.
Food safety is kind of a big issue these days. Really always has been here in the United States. Upton Sinclair exposed the sins of the meatpacking industry in “The Jungle” in 1906. Still eating at Chipotle as often as you used to? Another group of workers who the Republicans in Arizona want to liberate from the onerous shackles of licensing standards are….. food packers... the people who touch our food along the way from the field to the store or restaurant.
Via Digital Journal:
Arizona is number 2 behind California in the production of lettuce and leafy greens in the nation. Shelly Tunis of the Yuma Fresh Vegetable Association testified before the house Commerce Committee, reported Food Safety News, pointing out that the “concern is food safety.”
“We need to know everybody who touches that fruit and vegetable as it goes along the line, and that starts with the people that put it in the box. This license helps with traceback.” The Arizona Citrus, Fruit and Vegetable Advisory Council is also opposing the bill for the same reasons.Having any business licensed to handle food products is more important than many people realize. The expression, “from farm to fork” is meaningful because tracking allows consumers, retailers, restaurants, and manufacturers the ability to track a product back to its source, or where it was grown.
Without being able to find the source of a contaminated fresh produce product or where chicken or beef originated, we are setting ourselves up for long, drawn-out investigations that may end up putting even more of the population at risk of food-borne illnesses.
Since all things these days lead to Trump, you can assume that no one will be better on regulations than Trump. Which means no one will try to get rid of more regulations than Trump. One of the main points of the lawsuits against him on his phony-baloney “Trump University” scam is that while he was able to avoid federal regulation because it wasn’t accredited and got no federal funding, he may have run afoul of NY State regulations regarding his real estate seminars. Trump even hates regulations associated with water conservation, especially related to those low-flow shower heads! On December 11, 2015, at a campaign event in Aiken, SC, he said this:
“I’ll give you one regulation…So I build, and I build a lot of stuff. And I go into areas where they have tremendous water. … And you have sinks where the water doesn’t come out. You have showers where I can’t wash my hair properly,” he added. “It’s a disaster. It’s true. They have restrictors put in. The problem is you stay under the shower for five times as long.”