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Search Results for '"great moments in local government"'

Centralization of government power is generally a very bad idea. Schemes for “global governance” are the worst since they usually result in cartels for the benefit of uncompetitive nations. National policies are the second-worst, often producing one-size-fits-all approaches accompanied by suffocating bureaucracy. But this does not mean that state governments and local governments do a […]

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While most of my disdain is reserved for the federal government in Washington, I periodically share horror stories about foreign governments and state governments. And today we’re going to add to our collection of bone-headed policies by local governments. In some past cases, the examples captured systemic flaws. In other cases, we looked at specific […]

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I focus most of my ire on the federal government because bad policy from Washington is the biggest threat to our nation’s freedom and prosperity. But we also get plenty of bad policy from other levels of government. I periodically focus on the foibles of states such as California, Illinois, and New York. Today, though, […]

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I’m a strong believer in federalism, but not because I think state and local governments are competent. Politicians and interest groups are a toxic combination in all circumstance. But at least people have considerable ability to cross borders if they want to escape greedy and despotic governments at the state and local level. And when […]

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I’m periodically dumbfounded by the bizarre actions of government. Indeed, I even put together a post comparing amazingly stupid policies in the United States and United Kingdom. And I later updated that post with new details of brainless bureaucracy. Top U.K. entries included an effort to stop children from watching Olympic shooting events and (what must be) […]

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Here’s another remarkable story illustrating the incompetence of government. A bureaucrat in Norfolk, VA, got paid for 12 years (including benefits) without ever showing up for work. Depending on the agency, this may actually have been a good thing (I wish IRS bureaucrats did this), but it certainly shows how taxpayer money gets wasted when […]

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Julie Murphy is obviously a dangerous criminal. What else would you call a 7-year-old girl who does something as dangerous and illegal as operating a lemonade stand without getting a $120 temporary restaurant license? Fortunately, the health and safety of the people of Multnomah County were protected when an alert bureaucrat shut down her lemonade […]

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A number of years ago, I read about a good samaritan who got in trouble for plowing a street so his neighbors weren’t trapped by snow. The local government didn’t like being exposed for incompetence. More recently, I watched a documentary about the Air Florida crash in Washington in the early 1980s, which featured a […]

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Given the times we live in, it’s not unreasonable for a teacher to be concerned about a student drawing a picture showing the teacher being shot. But when the student is an autistic boy with the mental capacity of a third grader, perhaps it’s a tad bit of an overreaction to have the boy arrested […]

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We should always remember that the federal government may be the biggest problem, but that does not mean that state and local governments should be exempt from scrutiny. A good (or perhaps I should say bad) example of bone-headed stupidity by bureaucrats and politicians outside of Washington comes from Texas. A local school bureaucracy has […]

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Since we’ve been talking about the snow, here’s a story about city that must have no real crime. At least, that’s the only sensible thing to conclude after reading that cops in Harrisonburg, VA, arrested (on felony charges!) two college kids for the horrific offense of tossing snowballs (technically they were charged with “throwing a […]

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I’d say only a government would be stupid enough to sign a contract that obligates them to pay somebody more than $100K each year for doing nothing, though it’s possible the corporate bureaucrats at the auto companies may have done something equally stupid in their deals with the UAW. But the real lessons to be […]

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Posts in this category normally mock foolish and wasteful policies by a state or local government, but the target this time is the union representing bureaucrats in Allentown, Pennsylvania. The boss of the union, upset that the town had to get rid of some excess staff, is threatening to file a grievance to complain about […]

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While the federal bureaucracy is more dangerous because it generates misguided regulations that are imposed on the entire nation, state and local governments certainly are capable of equally foolish actions. Here’s a report about state bureaucrats in Michigan threatening a women for watching her neighbors’ kids while they wait for a bus: A West Michigan woman says […]

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This may not be as important as an IRS agent killing a small business with an audit. And we can certainly imagine dismal scenes of bureaucrats denying health care to sick people in America’s future, and those also would be more important. But when a city official shuts down a lemonade stand because an eight-year […]

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As a good libertarian, I believe in the right of contract, including the right to insist on stupid employment conditions. After all, neither employers nor employers are obliged to enter into any particular agreement. But that certainly does not prevent me from commenting on the inane practices of government – including the recent decision to […]

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Back in 2012, I was both amused and horrified to learn that the Greek government actually required entrepreneurs to submit…um…stool samples if they wanted to set up online companies. Well, there’s apparently a surplus of that…er…material on the streets of San Francisco. A local radio station even shared a map of places to avoid (or […]

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While much of my analysis focuses on the mess created by Washington, I periodically show my ecumenical nature by sharing “Great Moments in State Government” and “Great Moments in Local Government.” And in keeping with the title of this page, I even occasionally share “Great Moments in Foreign Government.” Today, though we’re going to get […]

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When I write about the actions of state governments, it’s usually to highlight a specific bad policy. As you can imagine, states like California, Connecticut, Illinois, New York, and New Jersey give me a never-ending amount of material. But I frequently run across things that are happening in the states that don’t really merit an […]

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This story belongs in my “Great Moments in Local Government” series, which features examples of bureaucratic and political stupidity (see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here) that will make you laugh, cry, yell, or all of the above. Not surprisingly, the deeply dysfunctional local government in Washington, DC, wants […]

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