Thursday, August 26, 2010

Swimming Rules and Over Regulation

Excellent piece about the consequences of an over-litigious society, like ours, has on freedom. The author compares swimming in Walden Pond in Massachusetts, versus letting his daughter swim in the Amstel River in the Netherlands. The era of personal responsibility is over in the USA.
To generalise: for risks I can assess myself, I don't want regulations that prevent me from doing as I please just because I might end up suing the government. For risks I can't assess myself, I do want regulations that give me the confidence to do as I please. One kind of regulation stops me from swimming in a pond in Massachusetts. The other kind lets me swim in a river in the Netherlands. One kind of regulation makes me less free. The other kind makes me freer.

And while I think I fall under the libertarian thought of the less regulation the better, I do think the author makes excellent points on the kind of regulation we need.

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