IE Amazon can pass the buck completely to the sellers.
This will simultaneously make it expensive for those sellers actually trying to comply (lab testing is not cheap), and do nothing for those that were likely the problem in the first place (who will just fake lab results and do so at a lesser price)
They should require amazon to randomly sample.
In case you think this is not a real problem note that similar kinds of lab testing requirements destroyed, for example, children's toys except from large scale sellers who could afford the cost of compliance (see https://www.cpsc.gov/Business--Manufacturing/Business-Educat...). You will find basically no small manufacturers of childrens toys anymore.
Different cause, but likely same effect.
I'm sure it made things safer in some sense, but yeah.
If governments cared about safety they would do the sampling and fine companies a meaningful percent of profit. That would fix these problems once and for all.
Unfortunately we’ve elected governments that cut regulations which encourages the opposite behavior from companies.
It's really not that simple. The regulations here benefit Amazon. This is why Facebook is asking to be regulated. It's called regulatory capture. It's a product of corporatism or cronyism. Established corporations lobby for regulations that shut out small business and protect their profits.
Yes, because this adds cost to manufacturing. Imagine if you yourself wanted to make and sell children's jewelry. How difficult would it be for you to get a lab to test all of the stuff you make? Could you make any money after you subtract the cost of these kinds of lab tests?
A large company has economies of scale. Finding a lab is a much smaller portion of the cost for them compared to you.
But I'm sure I must have missed why this general principle couldn't be used for other things that we don't want to be toxic.
Saying that the onus should be on stores is crazy, unless you accept that a company should have exclusive rights to your product at which point it become a licensed product and would probably be branded as such.
The catch is when they buy materials (like paint) that are cheaper because they don't comply. Either because they are made for a market with different regulations, or they have been contaminated some how.
Manufacturers may need to get certifications from suppliers about the materials meeting the regulations, but these won't be the cheapest option.
Regulatory capture is a useful concept, but please don’t just parrot it for any case related to regulation. As seen here, it is now used most often as a cudgel against any sort of regulation, and that’s exactly what they wanted all along.
- this settlement applies to Amazon only, not any competitor. That doesn’t fit the usual mechanism of using regulation to shackle competition
- regulatory capture also refers to a social mechanism, where regulators become friends with the industry because they spend so much time together etc. That doesn’t fit too well here, because a state attorney’s office is far more diversified than, say, the FAA.
- the points in my initial comment, which you just ignored
>This supposed “insight” is on its way to become just another tired meme.
On the other hand, people were explicitly talking about regulation, which I took to mean as a wider-reaching thing than just this agreement Amazon made. In this specific case, Amazon is basically acting like the government for the sellers.
There is a role for a non-profit here to test products, publicise the results and potentially even bring cases to court against Amazon as a funding strategy. Barring that, propose a bill for your state watchdog to your state legislator. Waiting around for governments to care about random issues isn’t how any system works.
Does Consumers' Union still do stuff like this?
School supplies are in the mandatory group, for obvious reasons.
A good part of the incoming is from these tests and accreditation.
So, a good amount of conflict of interest.
This will act as a deterrent to catch those knowingly selling toxic products. But if lab testing isn't in the reach of suppliers, then how can they know if it's toxic free?
That said, I think a safety net is valuable, whether Amazon or government. It would be nice to see innovation to bring the cost of testing down so it's accessible to everyone.
the AG barely held Amazon accountable at all. the fines are miniscule. my guess is that these same lead and cadmium tainted products will be sold through Amazon again in the future. lead paint in toys has been a problem for decades. this isn't enough to stop it. this problem calls for a far stronger remedy.
also: where are all the California Prop 65 lawsuits? where is Calfornia's AG on this issue? we have way more Amazon customers in California and fewer conflicts of interest since Amazon is headquartered in WA. this makes no sense.
Even wholesalers and cash and carry places will normally have systems to ensure what small sellers are getting are safe and legal.
Amazon is the big fat exception as they're busy being "platform" and try to duck their responsibilities with "not our problem".
Nett result is I trust anywhere on the high street, even poundshop and other bottom end chains, more on safety and counterfeits etc than Amazon.
They have people that actually go to large retailers and buy articles and they are tested continually. I got a life from one of the buyers at one of the labs and she mentioned that you get funny looks if you have a shopping trolley filled with, for example, one example of each type of cream cake being sold in that store.
For my child, we dont buy any toys at all on Amazon. I especially dont buy branded stuff because I don't know what is commingled.
Amazon may not be losing money here yet, but eventually they will. Everyone that works there should be ashamed.
I couldn't get a new pair of glasses in time.
Had I spent money to travel to see the eclipse and was denied then opportunity, I would have been very upset.
willing to bet they gave you a full refund as well
There have been some high profile incidents with other big companies with big legal budgets (Mercedes or Lexus? Apple? Nike?) but it all seems to go nowhere. It seems like it takes an army of lawyers to tackle one small incidence of shady behavior for one specific client. It never seems to rise up to the level of being handled as a pattern of behavior.
Isn't that just the government passing the buck to Amazon then? The should have auditors from the FDA or NIST or whatever to do random tests at Amazon warehouses.
But for people who feel otherwise, and think it's necessary sure, no issue with it.
The burden of not putting dangerous products out in the market should lay on the manufacturer, through certifications or some form of safety requirements. In this case no doubt Amazon has to pay if they’ve acted as an importer, but you wouldn’t expect your supermarket to randomly sample all their product.
maybe the US regulations need an update to make school supplies a more strict category?
I believe they actually do for some types of products.
If they have a legitimate and well managed supply chain, it's not actually that difficult. The onus should be on the paint (or other materials) manufacturer to certify their product, with third party verification, and the certification flows down the chain.
Of course compliant materials are more expensive and the certification isn't cost free, but otherwise shady outfits wouldn't flout the law. However there shouldn't be any need for a distributor to do lab testing themselves. They just need to be conscientious and organised.
I don't necessarily disagree, but this is also really hard in practice for a lot of small manufacturers.
I happen to know a bunch about the childrens toy one for various reasons, so i'll go with that one.
About 30-50% of wood finish manufacturers certify the relevant things for their finishes, but the wood coatings market is not a huge one (They make their living off auto and oem coatings, etc), and so unless you are using thousands of gallons a year, you are using a local distributor.
What you can get there will be hit and miss.
In fact, it may not be possible to get a certified finish at all in your area.
(These are not paints, which are widely available).
Personally, i've had to order finishes from across the country in some cases, and i live in northern california (not exactly a small area :P).
(This wasn't for childrens toys, but it was to meet a similar regulation)
In very large markets, you don't have this problem because the components themselves tend to be plentiful.
Additionally, you are often required to test the combined product, not just the components.
I’ve already experienced this a few times with certain classes of products they wouldn’t ship to California due to stricter regulation on how much ozone they produce. That’s why I had to go to Bed Bath & Beyond to buy a HEPA air filter for my bedroom during the fires last year: https://ww3.arb.ca.gov/research/indoor/ozone.htm
When it’s one product it’s easy to point fingers at the regulation for the inconvenience, but shouldn’t I be glad my filter fits those tighter regulations? The diesel car maker scandal is proof regulations can be cheated, but it seems to me like more regulation would get us to a point where that would be quickly exposed.
Let Amazon pass the buck to sellers. Regulate more things, and eventually it will be in their economic interest to run their own tests. They got where they were by having everything, and they can fall if that reputation does.
This doesn’t seem like the most sensible approach.
If my yogurt product is sold in grocery stores, isn’t it my responsibility to make sure my yogurt is produced properly and my responsibility to label it with the correct ingredients and nutrition facts? I wouldn’t expect it to be the grocery store owner’s responsibility to randomly sample my yogurt and check for its quality or ingredients.
Edit: Toned down inappropriately strong wording. Sorry for that. Didn’t mean to be a blowhard.
What doesn’t seem to make sense is requiring Amazon to do the actual safety testing. That would be akin to requiring baby stores to run safety tests on strollers, or requiring car dealerships to perform crash tests.
Let's assume that you have a physical store and you import and sell a toy and trust the manufacturer-provided documentation that claims that the toy is safe. The customer trusts you and relies on you to ensure that the toy is safe, the customer doesn't need to trust the manufacturer. If it turns out that the offshore manufacturer lied and faked the documentation, that's not the customer's fault or problem - you're fully liable and need to compensate the customer for selling a shoddy product that's apparently not fit for sale. Generally you have the right to recover that compensation from the manufacturer but if you can't do that (e.g. the manufacturer has since disappeared, or is insolvent) then that's not the customers problem, they bought the thing from you and it's your responsibility to uphold the warranties (at least in EU law) - so if you sell products from shoddy manufacturers then you assume full responsibility of them, which generally means that importers/distributors (or large retailers - a small store would delegate that task&risk to the wholesale importer/distributor, a major chain would do it themselves) audit their suppliers to ensure that they're not lying, faking safety documentation, etc.
The baby store doesn't need to run safety tests on strollers, but it does need to verify that the safety tests have been done and ensure that the strollers are actually safe. The store can (and usually will) rely on others to ensure the safety and testing, but if they choose to rely on unreliable partners, that's the fault of that store.
That's kind of the problem, isn't it? They've "agreed" to do it, as if not doing that was also an option but Amazon decided generously (and not to set precedent) to comply with the law.
Corporations are not sex offenders, they are very rational. If you fine them, their delinquency stops. If you don't, it won't.
If the retailer saving money because the factory they sourced their product from is not testing adequately then obviously the retailer is shouldering that risk and becomes the responsible party. They don't necessarily need to do the testing in house, they could outsource it, but ultimately the cost of testing should be borne somewhere in the supply chain, before it reaches the consumer.
And honestly, this should be better for the retailer than sending them into the outside world untested and then having to do some big recall operation when, in this example, either a parent spots the flaw or the baby stroller collapses on their child.
By selling us a product the manufacturer and the grocery store warrant merchantability  and fitness for a particular purpose  ("implied warranty"). If you got a hot cup of lead instead of yogurt and the grocery story knew it was likely to happen and looked the other way, you’d be well within your rights to sue... everyone.
I don't know every lawsuit, but the blame in these cases seems to largely not land on the grocery stores, but the manufacturer.
For example, you could say "companies that make x million" are required to randomly test and certify they did (and will be fined 200% of profit for false certification).
and then you have a small entity program where the government is doing the sampling or something.
It is surely impossible to have a one size fits all that scales from "person selling at farmers market" to "amazon"
Maybe there is an opportunity here for innovation or a startup to facilitate this testing?
Amazon sells illegitimate books with identical covers to a legit copy and keeps selling them after the authors contact Amazon .... like it's not even hard to detect those, but they don't.
Amazon simply didn't care when fakes started showing up, missing pages, bad printing, but the covers were always identical.
Apple wanted to control unauthorized (even authentic) sellers, Amazon wanted to buy directly from Apple and carry more of their products, they negotiated and reached an agreement.
Amazon has rolled out Transparency, which is a way for any brand, regardless of size, to cheaply block the vast majority of counterfeits by putting a unique label on every product. Brands can also file complaints against counterfeiters which get acted on very quickly.
I suppose a manufacturer with the current system could hide quantities by generating way more codes than they actually need and only using a small percentage of them.... even with that Amazon could detect which ones were scanned and how often, so the manufacturer would have to randomly scan the unused codes, and maybe rotate the IP addresses they use!
An open protocol not controlled by any one player would be much preferred.
Stuff trickled in from China, Estonia, and Myanmar over the following month or two. We've been keeping it all in a bucket -- magnets, erasers, stickers, a baffling little squishy rainbow caterpillar panda, and mostly very small plush animal toys. The winner of the batch was a surprisingly high-quality hand puppet.
We let our toddler play with a couple of these tiny toys because they seemed fun; we did make him wash his hands afterwards before eating, but still in retrospect I think that was a mistake. There are zero enforced regulatory requirements for that marketplace and those manufacturers at that price point, and we have no way of knowing what cheap but toxic paint or additives were used. We should probably just dump the panda bucket :(
I can't find reports of Eastern European being non-conformant more often than Western European goods, but I haven't looked very much.
You can look for a CE mark: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CE_marking
It's easy to evaluate on things like that, but on stuff where corners can be cut I definitely worry.
Ozone has a limit but studies have shown even below the legal limit can be considered harmful. The population that typically use devices like CPAPs may be more vulnerable than the general populous to ozone exposure (and this exposure is targeted due to the usage of the "SoClean").
Mark my words: This will be looked back on like asbestos, radon clocks, and giving kids x-ray toys.
The amount of ozone you're going to be exposed to after the device is done (it only runs a cycle when you pack your mask into it) is minuscule and likely less harmful than the nasties that would grow in your machine, mask, and tubing (warm, dark places).
You're essentially taking people with breathing difficulties and increasing their exposure to a substance that is known at low levels to cause breathing problems. Additionally CPAP's filter systems have no way of removing O3 from the room's air.
When properly used the device is harmful.
Not that medical devices aren't themselves the Wild West. Hip replacements? We used those without testing for decades. CPAP? Technically only available by prescription, but go on eBay and you can order what you like.
Our regulatory authorities in the U.S. are a real mess. And while I believe we can trust Americans not to poop where they sleep (i.e. knowingly sell lead contaminated products to their neighbors), it makes no difference if our addiction to cheap Asian imports means we get products from people who don't feel much distress if someone in a faraway country gets sick (and can't be arrested for making them sick, either, since there functionally no truly international law enforcement).
That said, I'd be concerned around photocopiers. If you can smell ozone it's definitely above occupational exposure threshold. In a previous workplace I kept telling our secretary just that, but she wouldn't listen.
If you have a UV-C based UV Filter I wouldn't call that ideal but at least you're still receiving less than a ozone generator or even an ioniser both of which would produce higher ozone levels.
You may still wish to crack a window occasionally and look at a HEPA filter next major upgrade cycle.
The reason why these regulations exist was because toys and consumer goods would be imported with red paint that contained cadmium.
Usually the importer is responsible for complying or at least reporting to the EPA under TSCA.
You could buy olive oil from a producer in an area with protected origin status, similar to Champagne for wine. That's likely to cost more.
This is actually how I feel about self-published books. Amazon won't stop recommending them to me. I bought a couple, and the writing quality is truly atrocious. So now self-published just means I am guaranteed not to buy the book unless it gets a meaningful recommendation from someone trustworthy.
And I once bought the cheapest available toilet paper from Lucky. It was terrible, definitely not worth the minor savings.
On the other hand, I don't really think it's wrong for Amazon to be selling self-published books, or for Lucky to be selling ultra-cheap toilet paper.
I wouldn’t expect a market to stop this kind of behaviour but to simply put a price on it - “oh you want the non-toxic version? That’s an extra $20 please.”
That isn't a market solution, it's a bad-faith caricature. Obviously, no vendor is going to offer you a choice between toxic and non-toxic, because doing so would mean admitting one of their products was toxic.
The market solution is branding; some vendors will build up reputations, and those good reputations will let them charge a higher price. This very minute you're commenting in a thread that's mostly about how Amazon's poor offerings are blackening its name.
This happens today. A friend of mine is particularly sensitive to slightly-bad milk, so they buy a more expensive, known, organic brand of milk at the store instead of the store brand / local farmer's brand, because they have problems with store brand milk often enough.
- The shady no-name vendors are not trying to offer a toxic product.
- The shady no-name products usually don't cause problems. I wouldn't support outlawing store-brand milk because of your friend -- I drink store-brand milk all the time! As you yourself state, your friend is unusual.
I remember reading a teardown of a knock-off charger for Apple products which was (1) significantly cheaper; and (2) didn't include some safety measures that genuine Apple chargers do. The risk there was starting fires, not poisoning yourself, but to me the principle is identical.
The risk of starting fires is much higher with a knock-off charger, but everyone, vendor and customers, agrees that it's undesirable, and in practice it generally doesn't happen.
And the scammer will simply use the brand without license and profit from the reputation of the original manufacturer. Nobody can do anything about because there's no government to enforce laws.
(I guess another way of phrasing this is, Amazon is notoriously bad at removing poor-quality or counterfeit products from their storefront. How have they nonetheless become one of the most successful marketplaces? Is this a sign that the market doesn't actually care as much as we think they ought to? Or that they do care, but market mechanisms are ineffective at expressing this desire and so government regulation actually is needed?)
I’d guess they are counterfeit, so filtering by where the real item is manufactured doesn’t really help with things like toxic materials.
(I’m not arguing against such filters, just pointing out that they may not solve this problem.)
They should have dedicated 10X the $700,000 and have been fined, my God I'm upset right now.
"Moreover, if the Attorney General or Washington Department of Ecology advise Amazon of any children’s school supplies or jewelry that exceed safe levels, Amazon must remove the product from its online marketplace within two business days."
Nothing less than a program of frequent random sampling is going to keep the products clean. Times 50, plus international.
Why don't American's use an "and" here:
> Amazon must remove toxic school supplies and kids’ jewelry from US marketplace
To me, that's much clearer.
Doing so is still standard American English. However, headline writing in particular has a tradition of extreme brevity, and this style leaves out conjunctions and adjectives (including articles).
As another example of ambiguity, the article title here isn't explicitly clear that Amazon must remove these items from its marketplace. Read literally, "from US marketplace" could imply (somehow) the entire United States retail environment.
I realize Ebay has controls to protect consumers, but the perception for everyday people is that it's risky, but you might find a deal.
I rarely use Ebay anymore, and in fact just purchased some sneakers there after probably 6+ years of not purchasing anything. I crossed my fingers, fully expected to be ripped off and lucked out, the product was exactly as advertised. I would not have purchased them if the discount wasn't so dramatic. This is all anecdotal based on my experience and the exp of my peer group.
It's illegal to sell it to someone under 18 in the UK.
(I worked on electronics and soldered with real lead solder for many decades, starting when I was a kid, and think RoHS and the lead-ban has caused far more environmental problems.)
Edit: apparently controversial opinions are not welcome here either...? Or is it the "chemicals are scary" crowd again? :|
Toxic is definitely the correct term. Heavy metals like lead and cadmium don't get excreted by your body; they build up in the brain and kidneys until they kill you. For this reason there is no level of exposure that's considered safe. Even a very low level of exposure will kill you eventually.
Some quick google searches find things like:
So likely, they aren't using the Cadmium and Lead for anything directly with these products, it just happens to be around as a contaminant from other processes.
Lead-free solder is also less resilient to thermal stress because it's not as ductile, and that lead to plenty of PCB failures around the time manufacturers switched over --- creating even more e-waste.
Fortunately, military/aerospace is still exempt from the ban.
Here's an interesting NASA presentation about lead-free vs. leaded solder:
- mostly epoxy
- surface mount components: ceramics, plastics, glass, etc.
- metals such as tin, copper, steel, aluminum, gold
Generally, only the metal bits are worth recovering, everything else needs to be burned.
(It's possible to burn epoxy and other plastics without producing harmful gases.)
Depending on the type of board, the metals may or may not be worth recovering. If it's just tin and steel and copper, there's no harm in just shredding and burning the whole thing. (After shredding, a small amount of metal may recovered by magnets and routed to the foundries.) If the burning is done correctly (and it definitely isn't if you do this on the streets somewhere), no harmful gases are produced, and materials like ceramics, glass and metals will be left in the ash/slag. (BTW, even if your incineration facility sucks somehow and harmful gases like dioxins are produced, most of these decompose from UV exposure.)
That slag will often be used to build roads, and e.g. this company says they're able to refine the slag a bit: https://www.adrecyclingmachines.com/applications/incineratio...
Now, what if there's lead or other heavy metals in that slag? You probably would want to avoid using that for road construction, and since metals form alloys, you'll also be able to recover a whole lot less reusable metal.
Lead has really, really bad effects on human health (not just cancer, but generic insanity). Most people seem to think that lead causes cancer, along with thousands of other compounds. But when they're told that lead causes insanity, they usually tend to listen a bit more carefully. If "insanity" doesn't mean much to you... Well, there have been studies correlating lead exposure with violent crimes. (* I haven't read these studies, but they can be found on Google)
Cadmium sulfide is not very toxic (LD50 above 5,000 mg/kg) when used as a pigment, although acute exposure to cadmium vapors from welding is harmful.
For comparison, sodium chloride (table salt) has an LD50 of 3,000mg/kg.
>from what I understand you'd have to consume a lot of it for it to be a problem.
Your understanding is wrong.
pigments (lead), soldering (lead) and light sensors (cadmium).
On top of that, your justification ("who the fuck else is going to do it?") of violence ("steal money from taxpayers") is quite alarming.
Long, tedious tit-for-tat ideological battles are right out.
No surprise these clowns hope to legalize lead in food too.
It also explains that in the case of drunk driving what's criminalized isn't harm to people, but an increased potential to harm people. If you have principles that say that racial profiling is wrong because you shouldn't punish people that haven't harmed anybody, then this principle should also apply to drunk driving.
Note that I am against drunk driving, but it does cause an inconsistency in my principles.
Also, isn't it silly to dismiss mises articles because a person posted an article in 2006? Would you think it's fair if somebody dismissed all of your opinions going forward because of one opinion you held in 2006?
Racial profiling is wrong because being of a particular race does not by itself represent any greater risk of harm to anyone else. Not analogous to driving while impaired, IMO, so your principles are likely more intact than you might think.
Surely no one is arguing that you can walk down main street firing your gun into the air and as long as no one is struck by a bullet and no property is damaged, we're cool.
With DUI, there's a clear causation. Alcohol in blood will make you lose coordination and slow your reflexes. More alcohol, the worse it gets. And reaction is individual. That will increase the probability the driver will harm someone.
So it's different.
Should government deal in probabilities? Depends whether you want it to do prevention or not. All prevention is basically dealing with probabilities.
> why not ticket the swerving or recklessness and leave the alcohol out of it? Why indeed.
Argument ad absudrum: Swerving may not lead to an accident either.
The values they use to punish you is completely arbitrary (probably varies from state to state) and we do not take any other factors related to the individual into account which is important if we are not so keen on ruining other people's lives. Look for behaviors that show there are issues with coordination regardless of substances. We can do that. We already do it. We do not need to punish based on arbitrary values. You could fail the test and yet have perfect coordination. See my issue? It gets even more problematic when you consider alcoholics who are actually better off drinking vs. not drinking when it comes to coordination and reflexes. Anyway, the emphasis, in my opinion, should be on behaviors that indicate loss of coordination, reflex issues, etc. not some arbitrary value. It works well with prevention, too, so there is no need to give up on that.
> Argument ad absudrum: Swerving may not lead to an accident either.
I agree, but depending on the situation, it could easily indicate that there is an issue regardless of the substance used.
Anyway, thank you for the calm-headed response.
Any such test is likely to be highly subjective and therefore open to bias and abuse. A breath alcohol content of 0.008% might be fairly arbitrary in terms of risk, but it's objectively measurable. A cop can claim that I was driving erratically just because he doesn't like the look of me, a jury can interpret dashcam footage unfavourably based on their prejudices, but a correctly calibrated breathalyzer doesn't lie. Drawing an a line in the sand between "sober" and "too drunk to drive safely" based on a biological marker of alcohol intake is almost certainly the fairest means of enforcement. There is of course the broader issue of who the police choose to stop and test, but there's no obvious technological solution to that risk of bias.
Typical roadside walk the line test might not be all that objective, as it's judged by the eye of the officer, and some people may be better walking the line, while still having reduced reflexes and being a increased danger on the road.
Though, I'm not an expert and despite this feeling arbitrary, there may have been studies comparing effectiveness of various forms of testing on predicting the harm of DUI, or comapring breathalizer with the walk the line test, or touch your nose test or whatever.
I'm not for locking people up, but I also prefer safer roads. And what helps and what does not may not be all that obvious on the larger more aggregate level.
If the officer wants you to do a field sobriety test you tell them blood test or GTFO.
Drunk driving should be legal because sometimes you make it home safe. Lead in food should be legal because some people will eat it and not get sick. Putting others at risk isn't a crime, the government should not deal in probabilities. That job falls to "insurance companies to assess on a competitive and voluntary basis."
Cripes, what a totally fucked up worldview.
If food makers (or the makers of school supplies in this case) didn't want to kill you, then why is there high levels of lead in the food, a substance which is known to be very toxic? The free market should've caused any lead products to be free market'd out of existence by now, given how much we know. Even more absurd is your claim of violence, considering you don't seem to consider people being exposed to dangerous levels of lead as being 'violent' in this scenario. Or is it just less violent then having to pay taxes?
We do not have free market, we have a pretty tightly regulated market.
> Even more absurd is your claim of violence, considering you don't seem to consider people being exposed to dangerous levels of lead as being 'violent' in this scenario. Or is it just less violent then having to pay taxes?
Excuse me? They are two different instances of violence. What you are trying to do is solve violence by more violence. How did that ever work out?
It is funny how my claim of an instance of violence is absurd merely because of an assumption which is "you don't consider people being exposed to dangerous levels of lead as being violent". Governments stealing money at gunpoint is violent, regardless of the second part, which, again, was just an absurd assumption from you.
I am not sure what you are trying to achieve here.
A novel that triggered a major investigation, followed by food safety regulation, and testing in the USA within a year of its publication. It also halved US meat exports and created what became the FDA.
You want to take that away again? God help us.
At this point, excessive amounts of lead should be seen as malice and regulated out of existence. What other excuse would there be for such phony products to be sold, other than to make a quick profit at the expensive of other's health?
And no, they are not completely unrelated. This is a thread and topic about toxic school supplies having excessive amounts of lead. When people proposed regulations to fix this problem, you equated that to violence. You are directly connecting the two.
"Government stealing money from taxpayers" is what I equated to violence. Do you care to argue that it is not violent?
Too bad you cannot renounce education, healthcare etc that were also forced upon you by the state.
Not without paying taxes you can't. The US government charges you $2000 to renounce your citizenship and if your assets are worth more than $2 million they will give you a massive tax bill as though you had sold all those assets. Furthermore, you can only renounce citizenship if you accept the citizenship of another country, which kind of defeats the point you're making - you can't actually exit the system legally.
No requirement to have another citizenship to renounce.
I, for one, am happy to not fund the bombing of innocent people through the taxes I pay. I am not sure you could say the same. :)
And for the record:
> Renouncing U.S. citizenship doesn't free you from U.S. tax obligations and means that even after the renunciation, the IRS could still audit and assess taxes and penalties.
Even on Mars there would be society that will enforce its rules on you. See a pattern here?
The free market is awesome, but it can't effectively price externalities, especially those which have diffuse origins or targets.
It is making the assumption that they are doing it to kill you against which I spoke.
Parody libertarians should remember that the "violence" of taxation prevents actual violence of the blood in the (unpaved) streets kind.
Maybe not resisting in this case would prevent another (but not all) "actual violence", too, completely ignoring the fact that it does not have to actually come to it in the first place.
I am never going to understand people who propose that violence is a necessary evil in all cases to prevent further violence. Maybe the US needs to do more of that effective bombing of countries. Think smart: no humans to stick around to be violent! We successfully prevented violence!
Renounce citizenship and nobody would care about your taxes. If you do not want to then you as free willed entity chosen that being citizen paying taxes bring you more benefit than not being one.
I wonder which one of us is being melodramatic here.
From what I read, it basically said things like: "government isn't doing a good job, therefore we should get rid of it" and calls for (direct quote) "government to get out of the way of the productive and ever-inventive energies of the public as expressed in voluntary market activity".
Maybe we should stop prosecuting people for murder, since it's obviously not stopping it from happening. Maybe we should just allow the market to play betting games over subprime mortgages as it sees fit. Maybe we should just allow banks to launder money for drug cartels and terrorists as long as they're making a profit off it. Am I getting close to the unregulated dream?
HSBC still does business in the US to this day after being prosecuted for exactly this, because they paid the speedbump fine.
Additionally, here's a list of currently 37 countries that rely on taxation from wealthier countries: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heavily_indebted_poor_countrie...
His link even mentions this:
> Contrary to popular belief, most child labourers are employed by their parents rather than in manufacturing or formal economy.
> Preventing children from participating in productive work would be more harmful to their welfare and that of their group in the long run
Child labor is not inherently wrong, and no one says the kids should have to work in harsh conditions just like the adults. Child labor != children dying.
It is not an answer to your question, he just has absolutely no clue what he is talking about. It is yet another instance of "think about the children" gone wrong. I mean, yeah dude, working at retail or assembling whatever is killing our children! Absurd.
Edit: I am against forced labor when it comes to both children AND adults.
I don't think that's the comparison. It's more child labor = forced labor. It's not centrally about preventing death, it's more about preventing slavery. Children are particularly vulnerable to coercion, and if children are working in a factory, it's likely that they are doing so against their will.
In fact, the article says:
> Other schemes included 'earn-and-learn' programs where children would work and thereby learn. Britain for example passed a law, the so-called Masters and Servants Act of 1899, followed by Tax and Pass Law, to encourage child labour in colonies particularly in Africa. These laws offered the native people the legal ownership to some of the native land in exchange for making labour of wife and children available to colonial government's needs such as in farms and as picannins.
> Beyond laws, new taxes were imposed on colonies. One of these taxes was the Head Tax in the British and French colonial empires. The tax was imposed on everyone older than 8 years, in some colonies. To pay these taxes and cover living expenses, children in colonial households had to work.
Seems like it actually did the opposite of what he claimed?
So one country conquered another, and said they can have land they already had back if agree to forced labor according "to colonial government's needs". Doesn't seem much different than enslaving a population directly.
The original question was about a country where raising taxes would improve the situation. Name me a country that solved child labour and improved the economy by raising taxes?
If you could accomplish that point without comparing me and my family members to the Nazi party, extra points.
That was not me. :P
Let's not descend into "I've just read The Fountainhead and I think it solves all societal problems" rhetorical territory, eh?
There are undoubtedly regulations that are vital, but there are many that cause silly situations that can have bad consequences. Also, it's not like regulation is guaranteed to even solve the problem in the first place.
Mandating basic standards to ensure that products sold to children are non toxic seem vital enough. Whether this is the best way of managing that, is a different matter.
I'm not making some philosophical point; I'm genuinely contending that money belongs to the government. There's nuance and discussion, but as broad statements go, I contend that "Money belongs to the government" is more accurate than "People own their money".
I don’t get this whole idea that government necessarily means poor quality. In using it to take away money, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. There’s plenty that the gov already does well that we trust and depend on. If we had a bigger collective empathic view for others, a stronger notion of the value of civil service, and a closed wage gap between public and private, we could expect and get more from public institutions.
the reality most humans “scientifically” should assume is that “governments” or “public institutions” aren’t people ...
and that means something ...
You can argue for lower taxes, or even against all taxes, although the latter will probably just get you ignored in polite company. But don’t try to tap society’s consensus against actual crimes for your libertarian crusade.
"Muggers use the treat of violence to take money, government threatens violence if you don't pay taxes, ergo, taxation is the same as mugging and you may now assign to taxation all the dislike you have for mugging" is a terrible argument. Some form of bad syllogism, specifically, I'd say. If you really want to advance these positions, get better at it—then let me know when you have, because I've not ever seen them advocated particularly well and that'd surely be interesting.