Opinion: Thoughts on “Max Borders on regulation”

In his video, “Max Borders on regulation,” Mr. Borders presents his argument that American government regulates its industries too severely. Borders cites his personal experience of trying to sell barbecue sauce at a local farmer’s market. When he was referred to the county, Mr. Borders ran into “a wall of red tape.” He commented that the county required “an army of health inspectors” to confirm his house as a safe business premises. Eventually, Borders decided the hassle of getting permission to sell at the farmer’s market was more trouble than it was worth.

Borders discussed in his video how he felt that regulation grows in the American political structure. An incident arouses the ire of people. Accompanying this honest anger, Borders comments, special interest groups see a potential benefit by championing the cause of regulation. The third group that contributes to the excessive regulation, according to Borders, is the politicians, who use their support of further regulation to promote their own reelection campaigns. These further regulations are, according to Borders, a hidden tax that “steamrolls over the fragile saplings” of cottage industries. Because of this, good businesses never come into existence, and American entrepreneurs are robbed of potential economic opportunities.

Mr. Borders takes a strong stand on the issue of government regulation. His argument takes a simplistic approach to solve a highly convoluted problem. In his paper, “The Federalist No. 51,” James Madison commented that, “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.” Sadly, our world is not an ideal place, as Mr. Borders argues with his discussions of special interest groups. If the government were to eliminate its restrictions for industries, any product could be produced and sold. Lead-based toys could sit next to harmless trinkets on supermarket shelves. Without regulations to ensure only safe products find their way onto store shelves, Americans would be risking their health when they went shopping. Without faith in their products, the American economy would break down into a much smaller scale economy that didn’t afford consumers the variety of choice that they currently enjoy.

While regulation is necessary to ensure consumer safety, excessive regulation could cripple an economy as much as too little regulation. Excessive regulations would flood companies with rules and requirements that limited their opportunities. Only the firms with international influence would be able to keep their heads above water in the proverbial “sea of red tape.” To eliminate all but those multinational corporations would be to expose American consumers to the prices and pains of a monopoly.

Mr. Borders brings up an interesting and important issue with his commentary on the overregulation of American business. However, given the risks associated with excessively relaxed or restrictive regulations, it can be concluded that the current regulatory state is not yet a threat to freedom, but bears watching lest it become one.

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