This is apparently a serious response to the back and forth regarding trash collection that ED Kain and I had:
One of my earliest blog-buddies, Kip Esquire, used to have a running feature called “Kip’s Law Sighting.” Kip’s Law is simply described as: “Every advocate of central planning always — always — envisions himself as the central planner.”
I always found this to be a pretty succinct description of the big problem with nanny-statism and the like: it is rarely much more than simply the use of the state to impose one’s personal preferences on others. Today brings us one of the more transparent examples of Kip’s Law in practice.
Over at Balloon Juice, E.D. put together an argument (upon which he follows up here) essentially trying to explain why some folks in an Arizona community are upset that their municipality is switching from basically a free market approach to trash collection to an approach where exclusive trash collection rights are sold to one high bidder. At the core of E.D.’s point is that the switch amounts to a government-granted monopoly on trash collection and that the ability to choose one’s trash collection provider is in and of itself an entirely legitimate value that cannot simply be shunted away on grounds of alleged increases in efficiency.
And then, after they finished with their nanny-state central-planning regarding trash collection, the Fountain Hills Town Council got on to the heady business of Soma deliveries and whether or not they needed to decant more Alphas or Betas.
Christ on a crutch. This was small “d” democracy in action, not nanny statism or “central planning” or whatever ludicrous term you want to bandy about. A local town council, elected by the citizens, sat around and viewed a bunch of bids for trash collection for their municipality, and then chose one private firm and outsourced it to them. This is not some faceless bureaucrat at the UN headquarters foisting his will on an unsuspecting population. This is not some slippery slope to the erosion of individual rights. This is subsidiarity in action, and if you find it too oppressive or too vulgar an imposition on your personal liberty, you can move, or you can work with like-minded people to elect new town council members and change the contract.
This is why no one with half a clue pays ANY attention to these abstract libertarian principles and the people willing to spend hours upon hours discussing them. The town council picked a company to pick up trash, and the teahadists freaked out and think it is socialism. End of story. The rest of us are pointing and laughing at them, and now you.
*** Update ***
My GAWD. I feel so violated. I’m going through my bills before the Steelers game and I just realized that Allied Waste is contracted to pick up my trash, so my personal liberties have been impinged by the creeping totalitarianism of nanny-statism. To show solidarity with the oppressed Fountain Hills trash protesters, I am going to dress up in my “Don’t Tread on Me” t-shirt, stand at the edge of my driveway at dawn during trash pick-up on Thursday, and throw pocket constitutions at the sanitation workers. We shall overcome, patriots!