Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Stifling Effects of Brussels Regulation

Read THIS absolutely fantastic article in Der Spiegel (don't worry, it's in English!) about the suffocating effects of Brussels regulations. When the Germans start worrying abour regulation you know the situation is getting very serious indeed. Here's a short extract...

There is only one thing the Brussels bureaucrats have forgotten in their zeal to slap regulations on just about everything: the often-evoked "responsible citizen." The Europeans of the 21st century appear to be dim-witted and unable to cope with life -- and wholly dependent on the dictates of Big Brother in Brussels. When it comes to protecting the population from its own supposed lack of common sense, Big Brother is enthusiastic...

Advocates for the protection of consumers, children, animals, patients and practically everything else are tirelessly proposing new things that they are convinced require regulation or, in some cases, ought to be banned outright. The EU administrators in Brussels are only too pleased to comply, while the representatives of the member states are quick to give the go-ahead...

This commission's creed might as well read "I forbid, therefore I am," complains Silvana Koch-Mehrin, a member of Germany's business-friendly Free Democratic Party (FDP) and of the European Parliament. According to Koch-Mehrin, depriving human beings of all risks creates a false sense of security and makes them "continually less free." What is not expressly permitted is verboten. Instead of "you may," the new mantra is "you may not."...

This is not an article full of so-called Euro myths. It is a carefully crafted expose of over regulation by Brussels bureaucrats which shows just how horrific the situation has become. It's a classic picture of the effects of a self evident truth: the more bureaucrats you have, the more regulations they will produce. It's what they do. That's why we need much smaller government both here and in Brussels.


Sea Shanty Irish said...

The Chinese Toy Makers Association AND our esteemed colleagues at PRC Lead Paint Consortium both salute you for your fearless defense of free enterprise excess!

Anonymous said...

There is a further depth to this as well

"There are exceptions, of course. For one thing, the regulation does not apply to higher-priced lighters. That's because the bureaucrats in Brussels are convinced no one would allow children to gain access to expensive lighters."

A cynical explanation is that the regulation is primarily aimed to hurt Chinese imports (as Sea Shanty seems to also believe) which will be at the cheaper end of the market & that the posher end of the market have already had a lunch with the appropriate eurocrats. This is the problem with conceding powers over anything - they will not alwys be used as intended.

Anonymous said...

Ah yes, the cry that a reduction in regulation means sending children up chimneys again.

Most regulation is crap and results in mindless form filling and avoidance. Often the result is less safety and worse conditions for workers.

For example, in the London building industry you have three distinct groups. The big firms, the small firms and the illegal operations. The last group pay no tax. They generally employ illegal workers who don't speak English. This makes it easier to cheat and abuse them. Typically, they take on a job to re-work a house. They make their workers sty in the house while it is being re-built - and then charge them for the privelage of living on a building site. There are no safety precautions. Often, in the event of an accident, the injured worker is dumped in a van and and driven to a remote area - or even taken across the Channel, before being allowed to go to hosptial.

Yet, the burden of regulation primarily falls on the small legitimate firms. This is because it is easier and safer for the inspectors - the illegal outfits are run by some pretty hard types. In some areas of London, legal building work has been priced out for the small scale operator.

I know, lets pass another regulation about putting safety stickers on hard hats! That will fix the problem...

Madasafish said...

Instead of wworrying about the EU, why not concern ourselves with what WE do,
We know- it's a fact- UK civil servants - gold plate EU regulations. Turn a 9 page paper into 420 pages.

Did the Conservatives stop this when they were in poawer?
Have they committed to stop it if they come to power again..

Another case of words and bullshit and no sensible acheivable action..
(Labour are worse: that's no excuse. )

Anonymous said...

Every major problem facing England today eminates from our (conned into) membership of the EUSSR.

They are destroying this country, regionalising it out of existence, and we are paying them £2million per HOUR to do it!.

English Parliament NOW!
England OUT of the EUSSR!
England RID of Scotland!
Scotland BACK IN the EUSSR!

Mulligan said...

Is it not the case that the Mattel toys would never have entered the UK in the first place had we been able to perform our own quality controls instead of having to take everything that meets EU CE standards?

madsafish, Absolutely right, just about every other country ignores most of the nonsense that comes out of Brussels unless it benefits them directly, about bleedin time we started to play the game properly, as we'll never change the others. (reference cod quotas)

Anonymous said...

Iain thinks he closes with a zinger: "That's why we need much smaller government both here and in Brussels."

Uh, no, Iain. We don't need any government in Brussels.

Madasafish - Exactly.

Anonymous said...

madasafish and travis bickle: I couldn't agree more.

Goldplating is a very clear example of how the civil service calls the shots. Any departmental minister with balls could put a stop to it. None of them do.

tgf ukip said...

"That's why we need much smaller government both here and in Brussels." Bang on , Iain, but you're a parliamentary candidate for a party pledged to continue to chuck even more billions into financing Browns over-funded, over-staffed and over-mighty bureaucratic state. Typical Tory hypocrisy to snipe at intrusive bureaucracy while still promising the armies of jobsworth regulators and monitors that all their jobs, customs and working practices will be safe with Blue Labour.

Twig said...

The EUSSR is not likely to reduce bureaucratic and legislative interference in future. So what shall we do, any ideas? Could the Conservative lead us out of this mess. I guess not since they were the ones who got us into it.