The red tape is rolling again with Obama in the White House, and the Times' Eric Lipton celebrated on Thursday: "With Obama, Regulations Are Back In Fashion ."
In a burst of rule-making, federal agencies have toughened or proposed new standards to protect Americans from tainted eggs, safeguard construction workers from crane accidents, prevent injuries from baby walkers and even protect polar bears from extinction.
And that's an obviously good thing, at least in Times-land.
The surge in rule-making has resulted from an unusual confluence of factors, from repeated outbreaks of food-borne illnesses to workplace disasters. Some industry groups, wanting foreign competitors to adhere to the same standards they must meet, have backed new federal mandates. The push for some of the measures began at the end of the Bush administration, a tacit acknowledgment that its deregulatory agenda had gone too far.
Some of the Times' habitual labeling slant is featured here: The far-left food police at CSPI aren't called liberal, yet the Heritage Foundation is (accurately) labeled "conservative."
And while the Times touched on strict new rules on toymakers, the paper didn't mention the zealous Consumer Product Safety Commission crackdown that could end up targeting secondhand toys sold at yard sales. As Reason Magazine's Katherine Mangu-Ward reported last September :
As part of a campaign called Resale Roundup, the federal government is cracking down on the secondhand sales of dangerous and defective products.
The initiative, which targets toys and other products for children, enforces a new provision that makes it a crime to resell anything that's been recalled by its manufacturer. The Feds are trolling for contraband items at Goodwill, on eBay, and at church bazaars. It's a shame really. "Resale Roundup" sounds like something fun, maybe a western-themed version of Antiques Roadshow. But no luck. Reality is far bleaker....[Jim Gibbons, the chief executive of Goodwill], said the nonprofit group was accustomed to inspectors from the Consumer Product Safety Commission making unannounced visits to its stores.
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