On Tue, 4 Dec 2012 20:58:18 -0500, "John Grossbohlin"
Well, the EPA finally did something right, eh? I wonder why SCOTUS
got into it knowing full well that the EPA was already involved.
Pissing match? That seldom turns out well for the American people.
...in order that a man may be happy, it is
necessary that he should not only be capable
of his work, but a good judge of his work.
-- John Ruskin
On Tuesday, December 4, 2012 5:58:18 PM UTC-8, John Grossbohlin wrote:
Just read an article where extension of BART rails lines in San Francisco area spent $7 Million (so far) to scare away birds and relocate nests along the new rail corridor to satisfy the EPA. Currently running about $23,000 per nest. I would prefer 25 cents for a 22 shell or maybe a buck for a shotgun shell. More cost effective and 100% efficent.
Environmentalists wanted the runoff from logging to be treated like industrial
waste flowing out of a pipe...
spent $7 Million (so far) to scare away birds and relocate nests along the new
rail corridor to satisfy the EPA. Currently running about $23,000 per nest. I
would prefer 25 cents for a 22 shell or maybe a buck for a shotgun shell. More
cost effective and 100% efficent.
Just let the train hit 'em. What does it cost to clean a splotted bird
off the front of a train anyway?
That's just the tip of the iceberg. I am currently working with a company
that is spending 10s of millions of dollars on nothing but compliance
programs to able to stay in business. I cannot be specific but think
in terms of stuff like Dodd-Frank, Sarbanes-Oxley, PCI, HIPPA, EPA, OSHA,
ADA, EEOC, ObamaCare etc., blah, blah, blah.
When you're involved in this stuff you realize what an incredible waste
of time, money, and human capital all this stuff is. The companies
do what they have to in order to "comply". But "comply" just means getting
some auditing firm (@ $300/hr +) to say, "Yes, you passed this year." So
companies focus on passing the test, not necessarily on actually achieving
the spirit of the regulation. They live in fear of government and/or
legal reprisal if they do not have everything checked off their compliance
list whether the compliance actually makes any difference or not. The auditors
love it because it's a license to print money. Someone once referred
to Sarbanes-Oxley as "The Consultant Full Employment Act." They're not
The truth is that anyone that is sufficiently evil and dishonest probably
can still game the system even with all that stuff in place. Remember
that everything the credit rating agencies and Wall St. did was *legal*
even though the end game of CDO mess in 2008 was economic disaster.
But that's not even the worst of it. Big companies can- and do spend the money
to do this stuff because they have to. But the real tragedy is that
it creates an enormous barrier to entry into these kinds of markets
(finance, healthcare, records keeping, credit card processing, analytics,
trading, manufacturing, construction, logistics ...). Market challengers
and innovators typically do not have anywhere near the financial
resources to do all this AND do their primary work. No wonder
we aren't seeing a wave of startups and new ideas we once did. No
wonder companies are being reverse IPOed and/or being moved off shore.
No wonder medium skill labor manufacturing is moving out of the country.
It used to be the unions that crippled our competitiveness, now it's our
own government and the legal profession.
The irony is that the Saviors Of Mankind that occupy office in our nation's
capital end up running around wringing their hands because there are
no jobs. Shocking, really, isn't it? Their solution, inevitably is MORE
And that's not even the worst of it still. Regulators are typically
appointed, not elected. They're like cockroaches - they survive the
election cycle and stay in place, often for decades. There are smart
regulators, but far too many of them are political appointees that
don't even understand what it is they're regulating all that well.
What is actually needed is smarter liabilities laws. Instead of trying
to regulate each and every tiny detail of the marketplace, the dunderheads
in government should hire the consultants they're keeping in business and
try and answer one question: Instead of regulation, what would a good
product liability law look like? The subsidiary questions would be things
- When is a company liable for its actions?
- What should the legal definition of "harm" look like?
- How should compensation for harm be calculated?
- When does liability rise to the level of fraud or felony?
If this was nailed down carefully, every corporate CEO would understand
the rules and make sure they complied, or face jail time.
This will not end well.
Tim Daneliuk firstname.lastname@example.org
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