Does government know better than you?
Regulations continue to hit us mere mortals in the pocketbook whether paying for recycling levies like bottles, batteries, containers, carbon plus or minus credits, or outlawing lawn pesticides, and /or making tracing your animals coming and going from your yard or farm mandatory.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, there are those who sit on government committees, advisory boards, mixed in with bureaucratic representatives fronting for the current government minister flexing his/her regulatory muscles appeasing some group that think this is important enough to make mandatory.

U.S. president Obama keeps doing it, and some think illegally passing executive orders that Congress should deal with, but don’t because they know nothing about it. Suddenly, a quiet Friday or slow Monday, a media release says the president of the United States passed an executive order making this or that mandatory or this illegal. There is no discussion, no comment period, just do it because he thinks he knows best, but that isn’t the case. Rather it is a case of ideology appeasing his own, or a group of people wanting something that they know wouldn’t ever pass a sane Congress.

The other thing that bothers me is the fact, often at the provincial or federal government levels, someone, some group, or even something suggests a new level of legislation or regulations, and more often than not the administration or bureaucracy tacks it on to a similar law or amendment instead of removing the old one. This in effect keeps the old part, and lawyers will always see it, and now we have the new one to boot making a schmozzle out of the whole thing, instead of letting the old thing or new thing rule.

There was a time, and it seems like many moons ago, where people did things like that for practical purposes instead of political and ideological reasons. I think town councils, other public organizations and maybe even school boards would rescind something old that wasn’t of any use anymore, and remove it from the books.
Not true anymore. Today it seems people in power come up with things that someone designs to bamboozle instead of improve.

Let me ask you something – How many of you know the Manitoba NDP government is ready to implement a ban on grass pesticides?

The Manitoba government introduced legislation recently restricting the use of certain chemicals for weed control on lawns to start in 2015. The pesticide ban is also on grass around hospitals, sidewalks, schools and daycares under the new legislation.
Conservation and Water Stewardship Minister Gord Mackintosh says the legislation will help keep children safe.
“Synthetic chemical pesticides pose a risk to human health, especially in the early stages of life,” said Mackintosh.
So be it … While farmers can still use pesticides on their crops, is this the slippery thin edge of the wedge for this government to restrict, ban pesticides on their crops, or at least stay further distances away from water bodies, creeks, ponds, ditches, and so forth.

Governments have this navel-gazing superiority in their opinions that they collectively known better what is good for us than you or me.

The other aspect of this has to do with all the other testing our food safety bodies do whether food, health products, prescribed medications, and safety features on baby and children’s products.

It appears that this testing and certification doesn’t mean much, if anything because those same products this government has just banned with the stroke of a pen; pesticides for our grass, also passed momentous testing for years, costing mucho dollars. Doesn’t the same apply here, what is good for the goose is good for the gander? I guess not because the testing for certain lawn pesticides wasn’t safe enough, but the testing for blood pressure, diabetic control, painkiller, and life-saving medications are.

On the other hand, a person driving a race car today is many times safer than a person driving a race car say 20 to 30 years ago. Why, because people with real concerns and actual common sense wanted to preserve more lives of real people, should they crash. Today the cars go faster, and crash harder but more race car drivers walk away from it, and /or sustain fewer injuries.

As one driver told me recently, a farm boy from Niverville, now putting food on the table racing cars, “Initially when your help straps you in, it feels far too tight. When you turn on to the track and start to accelerate, you’re trying to get the belt even tighter.”

In some cases tighter regulations help, in other cases, they hinder, and cost more money. •