Thursday, July 09, 2009

Helmet, shmelmet

Dondero reports that Missouri governor Jay Nixon has vetoed legislation to repeal the state's motorcycle helmet law.

Maybe we can get an override. I haven't analyzed the House vote yet, but the vote to pass this wasn't even close in the Senate: 23-6, with support from a majority of Democrats and all but one Republican. My state senator, one of the five Democrats who voted against the bill, has already received a strongly worded constituent message from me urging her to come to Jesus and support an override if one is attempted.

Columbia Tribute publisher and editor Henry J. Waters III, writing on the matter, calls himelf "a determined smallish-government quasi-libertarian," but then says:

Given the fact the world remains imperfect and mandates for seat belts and helmets are relatively so benign, we’re better off with the mandates.

I disagree. The fact that the world is imperfect is precisely what makes these mandates so malignant.

In an imperfect world, one-size-fits-all "solutions" dreamed up by politicians are likely to have unforeseen and unintended consequences, not all of them necessarily good. One of the bad consequences -- although I'm not sure it's unintended -- of benign-sounding mandates like this one is that letting politicians make these kinds of decisions for us encourages us to, well, let politicians make these kinds of decisions for us.

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