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Joe Biden’s “Stop All Bad Things” Order

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There’s an amazingly child-like view of a complex universe being expressed here. It’s as if the author is a four year old. Whose significant parent of choice will simply alter reality so that bad things don’t happen. It really is – no really – just like a child saying “Mummy, stop it happening!”

Maturity at least beginning to arrive with the realisation that no one does have that power over the universe:

After a year of deadly Covid-19 outbreaks in meatpacking, healthcare, retail, prisons, transportation, and other workplaces across the country, and after the Trump administration’s infuriating refusal to protect workers from exposure to the virus, worker advocates were overjoyed on January 21 when President Biden signed an Executive Order calling for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to issue within two months an enforceable emergency standard to protect workers from the disease.

But that deadline came and there was no OSHA standard. Finally, on June 17 the Biden administration issued an emergency standard that covered only health care workers. The rest of the workforce was left to rely on voluntary guidelines that were often impossible to enforce.

Gee, you mean bureaucratic rule making is difficult?

Possibly, even, that OSHA doesn’t know how far apart butchers should stand from each other? Or that the correct manner of not spreading infection among nurses might be something that nurses, doctors and the like have been studying since Semmelweiss and they know more about this than the latest graduate from a school of public administration?

But what is left of the progressive project if this turns out to be true?

We can and should go further. Even if someone has the desire to rule that reality they don’t have the capability. Say they even manage to write some new rules to protect workers from Covid. Right, so, how is that to be enforced?

No one does actually want to kill their workforce after all – at least not since the Roman Games that is. So no one is deliberately trying to infect people. All are doing the best, given the constraints they face, to prevent it in fact. For yes, capitalist greed does indeed suggest that if you’re paying people to work then you’d like them to work rather than not as they lie on their deathbed.

That is, it’s not just that writing rules is difficult it’s that rules having been written doesn’t particularly solve a problem.

But still Washington Monthly seems to think that only if the bureaucrats inscribed the right words onto the paper then the world would be a better place. Wonder when they’re going to grow up?

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  1. A simple, obvious, direct, quick and easy solution is to just tell everyone to stay at home.

    Of course then Biden has to solve the problems of no healthcare, no meat packing, no retail, no prisons, no transportation etc. But at least none of the bureaucrats would be at work to bugger things up.

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