Mario Loyola & Richard Epstein At The American Interest: ‘The Disabling Of America’

Full piece here.

Good intentions and sentiment can lead to horrible incentives and business-killing laws, making people more likely to try and legislate away the realities of life:

‘Paraplegic and wheelchair-bound, Pinnock threatened most of the businesses in Julian with lawsuits if they did not quickly install accommodations for the disabled, in compliance with Title III of the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). He also demanded that they reimburse him for certain “research fees” averaging about $2,500 per business .’

I’m not surprised to see courts in The People’s Republic Of California take up the law (signed by George H.W. Bush) with special determination.  The regulatory force is strong in the Golden State.

Our authors finish with:

‘The ADA’s enforcers have undertaken the utopian task of redesigning society to eliminate the disadvantages of disability. They will never be satisfied. Every decade will bring another layer of regulation, each more intrusive and incomprehensible than the one before, each accompanied by another tidal wave of avaricious lawyers. The lesson of the ADA should be clear: No law of this kind should ever be enacted, on any subject, in a properly functioning democracy.’

For every unfair thing in life, and every actual injustice, there can be an intrusive, clunky, federal law that can trade some injustices for others.

Your bathroom mirror is two inches too high:


***It’s my hobby horse, but I don’t think many in our culture have quite realized that the ideas and ideologies that create sentiment in the public mind against the injustices of life for all, and seek positive justice, fairness and equality for some, will be pursued with the same purity, true-belief, moralism, ignorance, politics and political power-grabbing, money, hypocrisy and intensity of all other human affairs.

I’m skeptical.

-A link for Michael Lewis’ article about California politics, public pensions and Schwarzenegger’s time in office.

Related On This Site:   Big cities, especially New York, tend to over-regulate business, you can hope for efficient corruption: Richard Epstein At Defining Ideas: ‘City Planners Run Amok’Richard Epstein At The Hoover Institution’s Defining Ideas: ‘California’s Kafkaesque Rent Control Laws’

Richard Epstein At The Hoover Institution: ‘Death By Wealth Tax’……Richard Epstein At The Hoover Institution: ‘The Obamacare Quaqmire’

Link From A Reader: ‘Richard Epstein Introduces Chicago’s Best Ideas To Students’

4 thoughts on “Mario Loyola & Richard Epstein At The American Interest: ‘The Disabling Of America’

  1. Chris, this is going on everywhere with the ADA. Congress has been considering an amendment that gives business owners 90 days to comply and avoid being sued. In the original ADA, the plaintiff can sue as soon as the condition is discovered.

    A lot of regulations are not well intentioned, but to help out special interests. You can look at the ethanol in fuel requirements. More energy is consumed to grow and turn corn into ethanol than the ethanol produces.

    Stop by my blog to lighten up, because there is nothing serious about my photography.

  2. Ron,

    Thanks. I think deep down it comes from some impulse to be fair and help people, but so many scumbags are attached to this thing that it’s a textbook case of bad law.

    I’ll be over in a few minutes, have a beer, and look at the pretty girls

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  4. As governor, Bush found that his skill as a schmoozer and his willingness to share credit—a rarity in politics—could take him a long way. He befriended Texas House speaker Pete Laney and Lt. Gov. Bob Bullock, both Democrats, and worked with them to form large working legislative majorities that passed statutes on tort reform, work requirements in welfare, and statewide accountability standards in public education while liberalizing the law to provide easier reimbursement for emergency medical care, authorizing 48-hour stays after childbirth, and providing legal protection to physicians who lodge written complaints against HMOs.

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