Friday, August 05, 2011

The Land of the Free Has Become the Land of the Lemonade Cops

Over at NRO, Peter Kirsanow comments on the summer surge of Nanny State crackdowns on kids' lemonade stands.

In just the last couple of years, our government has presumed to tell us what kind of light bulbs to use, how much water we may have in our toilets, where we may build our businesses, how strong our dishwashing detergent may be, what kind of medical treatments we may get, and that we must buy medical insurance, whether we want to or not.

The same government tells us that spending an additional $6 trillion is a spending cut. And if we object to such things, we are (according to the more enlightened within the government as well as their media acolytes) “terrorists.”

Proof positive that both Lewis Carroll and George Orwell lacked imagination.

Mark Steyn chimes in too.

This is not a small thing. A land in which a child requires hundreds of dollars of permits to sell homemade lemonade in his front yard is, in a profound sense, no longer free: It is exactly the kind of micro-regulatory tyranny of which Tocqueville warned two centuries ago.

Guest-hosting for Rush a week or two back, I suggested en passant that we needed a children’s version of the Tea Party — a Lemonade Party. I see now that a concerned citizen is organizing a Lemonade Freedom Day for August 20th.

By the way, our fellow NR cruiser Ed Driscoll has posted an excerpt from my new book about another curious priority of the control freaks of the Brokest Nation In History: The church bake-sale pie crackdown. I hesitate to channel Martin Niemöller (“First they came for the kid next door’s lemonade stand and I did nothing, then they came for the widder woman across the street’s maple pecan pie”), but this is a sustained assault by the state on civic participation, and thus on citizenship itself.

The proper response of any self-respecting seven-year-old girl on being told she needs the state’s permission to sell homemade lemonade is, “You’ll never take me alive, copper!”

Lemonade Freedom Day, huh? I love it.