Saturday, November 13, 2010

The eternal fascist, do-gooder style

On an episode of This Old House, new homeowners cannot remove poison ivy from their yard without permission from the Conservation Commissions because it's a native species...

Some San Francisco zealot is trying to get a measure on the ballot that forbids (only) male circumcision prior to age 18.

The township where my mother lives has a famously intrustive and restrictive building code. When she bought her house, which was built prior to the current code, the town decided that there was too much interior space for the size of the footprint. She had to have one room upstairs walled up in order to get a certificate of occupancy. After that, the carpenter came back and re-opened the wall and made a new door...

Then there's San Francisco's secular kosher laws: recycling.

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. Their very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be ‘cured’ against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.
C. S. Lewis, God in the Dock

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