Tag Archives: regulation

Obama’s FTC wants to “protect” you from the unscrupulous business practices of …your local Music Teacher

Like a towering regulatory tsunami, our benevolent Federal Government is sending a huge wave of brand new regulations crashing across the nation. And getting to higher ground won’t help matters, I’m afraid.

It’s been a busy year for our Federal Busybodies. Among the hundreds of brand new directives, they’ve added the FDA’s proposed ban of trans fats, the FTC’s new rule on the Hart-Scott-Rodino procedures for pharmaceutical companies, and the EPA revealing that they’re planning on rolling out 134 new environmental regulations in 2014 (which was announced on the day before Thanksgiving, so it would go largely unnoticed. Nice…).


But for a taste of just how petty and nonsensical some of these new regs are, I’ve got a doozy that’s received scant attention from the media.

It seems that our government wishes to “protect” us from the unscrupulous business practices of …your local piano teacher:

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Let’s hear it for the Government #Shutdown….!

Lemonade stand 444

Remember “Buckyballs”? Well, they’re out of business, thx to our Govt… and THAT’s not the WORST part

We’ve mentioned plenty of examples of insane Federal overreach in the past, and maybe none so chilling as what happened to inventor Krister Evertson, or the stultifying case of Steven Lathrop. In both instances, the Government seemed to take peculiar glee in bullying and punishing these men for doing nothing more than legally pursuing their dreams.

Well, we can now add another victim of the Obama Administration’s regulatory Insane Asylum: Craig Zucker.

buckyballs 33Zucker, as you may or may not recall, is the former CEO of Maxfield & Oberton, the small company behind “Buckyballs”, a desk toy for adults which became amazingly popular back in 2009. Unfortunately, the company ran afoul of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, which held that the toy was inherently dangerous to children, …even though it was marketed exclusively to ages 14-and-up.

Here’s an interview which aired last year covering the dispute:

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Out-of-control Government Regulation is destroying our country

Steven Lathrop and his neighbors had a problem, which the government had identified and then inexplicably refused to solve for decades. Steven Lathrop, using his own money, finally took matters into his own hands. He bought an eyesore of a dump and used the land to save his entire neighborhood from debilitating floods.

Steven Lathrop stepped up when no one else would. Steven Lathrop is a hero, by any reasonable person’s definition.

too much governmentAnd our over-regulated Federal Government crushed him, leaving him near bankruptcy.

From Heritage.org:

Lathrop’s home of Granite City, Illinois, regularly suffered from storm flooding that damaged his neighbor’s homes, and even cost the taxpayers money in federal disaster aid.

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Chicagoland Shakedown

This special report from the folks at PJTV concerns Chicago specifically, but it’s applicable to our national economy as a whole. Chicago is just one of the worst examples of such practices.

And keep in mind: Chicago is where Obama learned all of his political lessons.

Just sayin’….


Ten minutes long, but too scary to miss.

Drowning in Regulations

I think our federal government has truly lost its mind.

From ohsonline.com:

A new final rule from the Justice Department gives operators of existing pools and spas more time, until Jan. 31, 2013, to meet sections 242 and 1009 of the 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act Standards for Accessible Design. Those two sections say pools with 300 linear feet of pool wall or more must have two accessible means of entry (a pool lift or sloped entry) and smaller pools must have at least one, as well as what is required for these –- location, size of the seat, lifting capacity, etc.

This requirement has been controversial, as shown by the volume of 1,915 comments submitted to DOJ, and the agency previously proposed delaying the compliance date from March 15, 2012, to Sept. 17, 2012. January 2013 was chosen because some comments showed a significant misunderstanding of the requirements among pool owners and operators, according to the May 21 final rule.

Many owners and operators believed portable lifts would comply, but that’s not correct because ADA applies only to fixed and built-in elements, according to DOJ.

Let’s see: all public pools, hotels, and public/private pools need to install permanent lifts? And this is critical why exactly? Many of these pools just barely stay in business as it is, and this will hardly help matters. These lifts aren’t particularly cheap, after all.

From fredericksnewspost.com:

About 310,000 public pools nationwide could require a lift, Hatfield said. She estimated manufacturers can produce between 2,500 and 5,000 lifts per month as of May.

Lifts can cost between $3,500 and $6,500; installation may nearly double that cost.

Well, maybe people could simply ignore the new regs and just pay the fine?

Or maybe not:

Pools that failed to comply with the regulation would face a fine of at least  $100,000.

Good grief.


Ok, I give up. The government must want to put half of the lifeguards, pool boys, swim instructors and even pool maintainance & chemical companies out of business. Hoteliers are going to get hit hard as they struggle in a moribund economy, since there are 85,000 lodging-operated swimming pools in the U.S.. Hotels also have an added concern: if they install a sloped entry rather than a lift, it will require extensive (and very expensive) renovation. If they install a lift (permanent only, remember), they will now have to employ a lifeguard there, since the fixed chair lifts present a safety hazard because of the likelihood that children will play on them:

“Most hotel pools don’t have lifeguards, so anybody can use [a permanent chair lift], climb on it and damage it,” said Kevin Maher, the AH&LA’s senior vice president for governmental affairs. “You’re essentially putting a diving board at the shallow end of the pool, and that’s a huge concern.”

Also, I notice that compliance with this regulation has conveniently been moved to after the election. Of course, that’s probably just a coincidence…….


Obama’s America: making the country great, one idiotic, suffocating, mind-numbing, business-killing mandate at a time.

Arizona vs. the United States Government — again

Have you noticed that Arizona seems to get just a weeeee more attention from the Federal Government than anybody else? It’s almost like they’re being told, “Hey, nice state youse got here. Be a shame if sumthin happened to it….”

Several weeks back, we covered a totally wacko case where the Federal Government wouldn’t allow Tombstone, AZ to use modern technology to repair damage to the town (“Have a Nice Day!“). We’ve all watched the ongoing immigration battle. Plus President Thin-Skin isn’t exactly best buddies with Governor Jan Brewer. And there’s the whole Fast N’ Furious thing. And Sheriff Joe Arpaio is probably not on the White House Christmas Card list, either.

And even with all that, …..this is crazy.

From tusconcitizen.com:

A new state law and a bill introduced in Congress are meant to defend Arizona agencies from being punished for federal dust-pollution violations stemming from massive natural dust events, such as haboobs.

Failure to prove compliance with federal air-quality standards could jeopardize federal funding for transportation projects in the state.

The new law ensures each city, town and county documents whether they are in compliance with EPA standards.

…U.S. Rep. Jeff Flake has (also) introduced a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives intended to help states prove more efficiently and effectively that their violations of dust-pollution standards qualify as “exceptional events” — meaning that while proper controls are in place, violations still occur because of natural events beyond a state’s control.


“It’s pretty severe,” Flake said. “This is something that I think everyone recognizes — Republican or Democrat — that it’s just bureaucracy run amok. And we’ve gotta fix it.”

OK, so Arizona, which is largely made up of desert, is having to defend itself from our oh-so-benevolent Federal Government, which is trying to cite them for…..dust violations???

DUST violations?

The massive dust storms that rolled through the Valley in 2011 have led to a record number of dust-pollution violations at air-quality monitors across Maricopa County. In many cases, multiple violations happened on the same day, but at different monitor locations.

Just when I think they can’t shock me anymore, they do it.

So what’s next: the Feds punishing Colorado because their mountains are too tall and they aren’t Americans with Disabilities Act compliant? Or maybe finding Montana excessively forested (exceeding Federal forest fire risk tolerances)? Or maybe Kansas should be punished next, since they don’t have enough trees, and thusly aren’t “doing their fair share” in the fight against CO2?

Really, I have only two concerns at this point.

  1. That Arizona will somehow lose this battle against this idiotic regulation, and
  2. That if Arizona does manage to win, the Feds will then find them in violation of their soon-to-be-released regulations monitoring Excessive Canyon Size.

Hey, it’s no crazier than trying to regulate dust storms.

Another FINE mess

Big Daddy Government. He’s your buddy; he’s your pal.

As much as the Left wants us to believe that “better living through bigger government” is our future, I have a hard time swallowing idiocy like this.

From the New York POST:

A Health Department inspector bizarrely slapped a Brooklyn bagel shop with $1,650 in fines — because sesame and poppy seeds fell to the floor while the bagels were being made during working hours.

The owner of B&B Empire Bagel Cafe — who appealed the violations and lost at two separate hearings — says the inspectors must have holes in their heads. How is he supposed to make seeded bagels without some of the tiny goods spilling onto the ground?


“Look,” explained Gormakh, “a few seeds are always going to be dropped when you are dipping the bagel in the seeds. They don’t all stick like glue.”

“Now imagine the seeds from 100 bagels. Any place where bagels are produced will have these problems.”

Still, city regulators were unsympathetic.

These are seeds, fer cryin’ out loud. Seeds? In a bakery? Yeah, we can’t have that.

On a larger scale, you may have missed this one from the New York Times:

WASHINGTON — When the companies that supply motor fuel close the books on 2011, they will pay about $6.8 million in penalties to the Treasury because they failed to mix a special type of biofuel into their gasoline and diesel as required by law.

But there was none to be had. Outside a handful of laboratories and workshops, the ingredient, cellulosic biofuel, does not exist.

Penalizing the fuel suppliers demonstrates what happens when the federal government really, really wants something that technology is not ready to provide.

“From a taxpayer/consumer standpoint, it doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense that we would require blenders to pay fines or fees or whatever for stuff that literally isn’t available,” said Dennis V. McGinn, a retired vice-admiral who serves on the American Council on Renewable Energy.

Plus you have Obamacare, and the new debilitating regs on coal-fired power plants, and …..the list goes on and on.


This is governmental efficiency in action: punish the people who are risking everything to make a go of it in this moribund economy, even when it defies any sense of proportion or logic.

Of course, you’d have to be pretty gosh-darned paranoid to think that instances like these are intentionally destructive.

I mean, where would you GET such an idea?