GOP senator: abolish hand-washing regulations in restaurants


So he doesn’t have a problem with this (fairly easy to follow) regulation, so long as they follow a different (less effective) regulation? A real rocket surgeon, this one.


You seem surprised. Didn’t you know, your laws are stifling regulation that’s wasting money and preventing society from reaping the benefits that trickle down from the large companies. Our laws are just good sense that lets the market choose for itself, which always works out to the best interest of consumers!


The problem with this line of thinking is that the market won’t take care of a number of issues that don’t directly affect customers of a business but rather affect non-customers in the vicinity of a business’ operations.

Some customers will still buy Product X even if it’s manufacturer admits to dumping industrial waste in the rivers in a state far away from where the customers live.

The libertarian market fantasy can only occur if the consumers are well educated, well organized, and have a lot of market choices. Poor people shop at Walmart because they can feed their family mass manufactured crap for less than the healthy expensive food they can find at Whole Foods. If you have to make a moral decision that entails either feeding your family or caring about hypothetical strangers in another state, you will likely choose your family every time.


I’ve had too many argument as of late about BS like this.

I get it - we want smaller government and less government intrusion. I am all for that too. Unfortunately the "free market’ and people in general don’t do what they need to do, so we end up with actual laws that say you can’t dump shit in your front yard or you have to put your kid in a car seat. I don’t want federally mandated vaccines, but it is going to be hard for me to argue against them if too many people stop using them and create problems for everyone.

Stop focusing on these laws where it is very clear they are in everyone’s best interest and look at tackling something larger and more prudent.


Ya, I was disappointed that the “host” didn’t ask how the senator would ensure that businesses post a sign stating their hand washing policy…

Not sure when the video was made, but Tuesday was a holy day – Ayn’s 110 birthday.


We have a recipient of the “nincompoop award”. Please hit him in the head with it, it may help with his lack of common sense…

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Yep. Basically it’s a proposal that maintains the same amount of regulation, but makes that regulation less effective at preventing deaths.


Why not have Federally mandated vaccines (with reasonable opt-out provisions for people with legitimate reasons not to get them)?

Fun fact: the Supreme Court settled the issue of “can the government compel you to get vaccinated even if you don’t want to?” back in 1905.


It should be noted that there are no federal laws mandating hand-washing. Those laws are at the state and local level. Therefore the Senator gets to talk for free about a matter he has no power over, instead of, say, passing a clean immigration reform bill.


You can’t pass a clean bill with dirty hands.


Free market fundies are why we can’t have nice things up in this hiz.


What, will these hands ne’er be clean?


This conservative or Libertarian idea that “the market will take care of it” is tempting but flawed-- the market might eventually take care of it, but in the meantime a lot of people will get sick. Think of how the market would take care of pharmaceutical companies that sold snake oil . . . .

Nevertheless, apparently the government telling businesses that employees must wash their hands is bad, but government requiring those businesses to post a sign saying “our employees do not wash their hands” is OK-- seems like they are both “government intrusion.”

I agree that there are examples of government intrusion we should all be concerned about, but the GOP has interpreted the phrase to include a lot of the things that keep our civilization civilized.


Yeah, you’d have your whole system of government investigation and regulation, but in the end, it wouldn’t actually do anything except mandate a sign posting. (Thus allowing the possibility of anyone who ignored that sign might die as a result.) But to be fair, he’s clearly an idiot and he likely didn’t even think it through that far. He was just assuming a magical omniscience of all patrons - everyone being aware not only of what a business was doing (or failing to do), but also what those lapses actually meant. Because his implication is that it wouldn’t just be hand-washing, but all safety regulations. So you’d have hundreds of pages worth of notices for all businesses on all manner of safety issues that you’d have to just be somehow aware of what the significance was in practical terms to your health, should you enter the building and purchase things.

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I’m fully aware of that. Because I’d rather have less laws if possible. 20 years ago this wasn’t an issue. If it continues to be then making such a law will be prudent.

The problem there are examples of regulation hurting the market, but there are also examples of non-regulation or under regulation leading to abuses and bad things. There is no white or black answer. While I like the idea of free markets, I acknowledge there needs to be some regulation. We had eras of little to no regulation, which gave rise to things like Labor Unions and rivers on fire. I try to point that out to people. Companies and people in general will do what ever they can get away with, not what is best for everyone.


This makes perfect logical sense. Unfortunately, it’s still wrong.
I understand the logic completely–let businesses make choices, as long as they inform people (wonder if this Senator would then support mandatory GMO labeling).
The problem is that notifications then become noise, like the “known to the State of California to cause cancer” signs that everyone just ignores because they are everywhere.
This only works if the notifications are very specific, like “we don’t require employees to wash hands, and Randy has decided he won’t, so if he’s your barista watch out.”


Pedant hat on

It isn’t the quantity of laws, it is the intention->implementation->effectiveness->adjustment cycle that is sorely lacking. 10 useless laws are useless. 100 well thought out laws which are implemented, effective, and tunable are better.

Sometimes things in this giant meat-filled world are going to be complex and messy, so we need complex and messy laws.

washing your hands is not one of those.


Well, we know historically that the market didn’t take care of it in most cases, even eventually. People didn’t know what businesses were doing, because there wasn’t anyone with the authority to force their way in and inspect things, and there wasn’t anyone saying, “These are best practices, these companies are doing that.” So customers were acting out of positions of ignorance. At best all they could say was, after people had already died, “Well, this person and this person died. They may have done so because they drank coffee at Starbucks. Maybe I should stop going there.” Not only did it not stop people from dying in the first place, it didn’t necessarily stop people from subsequently dying either, except in the rare cases where there was something immediately deadly in the product.