Friday, April 9, 2010

Another loss of freedom coming, the biggest one yet

"The Database That Ate American Business"

by Hugh Hewitt, an author, law professor and broadcast journalist. Hugh Hewitt is the host of the “Hugh Hewitt Show,” broadcast live from Southern California each afternoon. Hugh Hewitt conceived and hosted the 1996 national PBS series "Searching for God in America."  I read this today in Townhall Daily newsletter of blogs.

"Very few people outside of the commissioners and employees of the Consumer Products Safety Commission, a few business lawyers and the legion of left-wing so-called "consumer activists" know much about the countdown to the new "database," but by this time next year American business will be reeling from the launch of what will become a government sponsored virtual bulletin board for the serial slandering of American manufacturing.

Reputations will be ruined and brands deeply damaged once the Congressionally-mandated internet bulletin board becomes operational. Here's the benign summary of what the law requires, as interpreted by the CPSC in a report to Congress :

To meet the requirement for a public database, CPSC is planning to build (working name only – final still to be determined), which will be a single central location where consumers can go to report product safety incidents, and to search for prior incidents and recalls on products they own, or may be thinking about buying. In conjunction with the web site launch, CPSC will also conduct a public awareness campaign to raise awareness of Sounds wonderful, right? But how will it operate in reality?"

                                                             MY COMMENT
This is one of the most dangerous initiatives from the anti-capitalist, anti-business government that I have heard. Further, this will perform two functions. First, it will ultimately severely diminish the product choices and, thus, freedom of American consumers. Many products and services have "issues" that can be publicized indiscriminately in such a instrument, nothing to do with risk of death but problems much more subtle that, in the hands of opponents, competitors or trial lawyers can be used to destroy product offerings and companies.

But even more dangerous: with government (read:liberal) control of it, the bulletin board can be manipulated to show products and services favored by the government (read: environmentalists, unions, trial lawyers). The government, then, will have control of the products offered to American consumers. It seems an innocuous extension of goverment control of credit cards, health care, insurance, banks and financial institutions, money cards, student loans, home mortgages (all of which are now directly controlled by government fiat)but will put all of our choice in the hands of arbitrary government bureaucrats. 

Perhaps ultimately (is this a wacky conspiracy theory or not?)  the government will bypass the middleman.  Why can't it simply hire the people, buy the buildings and equipment and manufacture what it wants?  As with ObamaCare it can simply mandate that we buy what government bureaucrats desire.  Ethanol was only a tiny shoehorn.

No comments: