Saturday, April 27, 2013

Business destruction watch: The Feds want to move your cheese

All in the interests of protecting you from risks so minor that otherwise safety-conscious European people are willing to assume them, the Feds propose to cut the cheese. Yes, the government needs to protect us from eating natural food in the form of raw cheese. The risks are so small, one is forced to wonder whether these regulators step outside their front door:

Using that data, she calculated in an email to me that the chances of a person in a high-risk group (e.g., a pregnant woman) being sickened by pasteurized cheese are the same as the likelihood of someone from the general population being sickened by unpasteurized cheese—in both cases a scant 1 in 55 million.

Erber notes that means "1/6 of the entire country could eat camembert at the same time and ONE person would get really sick."

Those microscopic odds are also reflected in real-world numbers.

Erber points out the report notes just “725 reported illnesses in the entire world over a 25 year period,” a startlingly small number given worldwide cheese consumption.

You would think locavore liberals would be up in arms, but since Barack Obama is in office only those nettlesome libertarians are, er, raising a stink.

Setting aside the joy that this will suck out of American gastronomic life -- and why on earth would we set aside joy? -- how many little businesses will go under because of this latest "public health" initiative? How many businesses will not be started for fear that the unelected regulatory state will identify a microscopic risk and shut them down?

There would be far less regulation, and the regulation we have would be far more intelligent, if more voters understood probability.

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