One of the three areas of work of the Trump Administration is described as the “Deconstruction of the Administrative State”. Since some of my friends seem unclear on what the problem is, here’s an example from “Inside Education“.
The University of California, Berkeley, will cut off public access to tens of thousands of video lectures and podcasts in response to a U.S. Justice Department order that it make the educational content accessible to people with disabilities.
Today, the content is available to the public on YouTube, iTunes U and the university’s webcast.berkeley site. On March 15, the university will begin removing the more than 20,000 audio and video files from those platforms — a process that will take three to five months — and require users sign in with University of California credentials to view or listen to them..
The Justice Department, following an investigation, in August determined that the university was violating the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990. The department reached that conclusion after receiving complaints from two employees of Gallaudet University, saying Berkeley’s free online educational content was inaccessible to blind and deaf people because of a lack of captions, screen reader compatibility and other issues.
So a couple of deaf people whined about lack of subtitles, the National Organization for the Deaf filed a complaint under the American Disabilities Act … and here’s how well that turned out:
The [Justice] department ordered the university to make the content accessible to people with disabilities. Berkeley, however, publicly floated an alternative: removing everything from public view.
“In many cases the requirements proposed by the department would require the university to implement extremely expensive measures to continue to make these resources available to the public for free,” Koshland wrote in a Sept. 20 statement. “We believe that in a time of substantial budget deficits and shrinking state financial support, our first obligation is to use our limited resources to support our enrolled students. Therefore, we must strongly consider the unenviable option of whether to remove content from public access.”
Now the university has settled on that option.
The University is good enough to put the information online for free. And yes, many historical videos don’t have subtitles, and thus are difficult to access for deaf people.
SO FREAKIN’ WHAT! The fact that deaf people cannot hear the soundtrack on videos should not be used as a reason to deprive hearing people of those videos. That’s madness …
And that, dear friends, is why we need to deconstruct the administrative state … IT NO LONGER WORKS. This ruling from the Justice Department has nothing at all to do with justice, and everything to do with identity politics. What’s next? Am I going to be required to provide subtitles for the videos I put in my blog? Do I need to provide a braille version of my words or face a fine?
And how about the noble warriors who did this?
Stacy Nowak, one of the complainants, referred comments to the Justice Department and the National Association of the Deaf. The NAD did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Yeah, I bet that Stacy Nowak and the NAD are running from this like cucarachas when you turn on the kitchen light at midnight … they should be ashamed. But they are not the real problem, they are just the symptom.
The real problem has been the proliferation and growth of an administrative state devoted inter alia to forcing everyone to make everything equally available and accessible to everyone, even a blind deaf quadriplegic. Should we have ramps for wheelchairs? Yes, they made my mother-in-law’s life much easier. But the plain fact is that we cannot legislate equality—we cannot make the world equally accessible to everyone.
So I’m overjoyed to see the deconstruction of that cumbersome monstrosity as one of the three main focuses of the Trump Administration. Here’s another example of the administrative state at work, that should be of interest to my friends here in California.
Deep in the bowels of the California administrative state, some unelected and un-fireable pluted bloatocrat waved his magic pen and added aloe vera and goldenseal powder to the list of products that cause cancer. That means that every business in the state that either uses or sells aloe vera and goldenseal powder, including spas and health food stores and places that pride themselves on being organic, has to post the following in their business in a prominent place:
Perhaps that will make it clear to even my most liberal friends the dangers of unbridled regulation by the administrative state.
Here’s the short version. We definitely need regulations, because humans are pigs. Without regulations you can be sure that somebody will piss in the drinking water. Guaranteed.
But over-regulation is just as bad, and that is where we are now.
However, there is good news. To my great happiness, one of the less-discussed Executive Orders was a simple one that once again kept a campaign promise. The Order says that if a government department wants to implement a new regulation, they have to get rid of two old regulations. Given time, this will slim things down. It will take a while, it’s a stealth tool … but the effect will be devastating.
Now, if President Trump would only get rid of the public sector unions that make it nearly impossible to fire a government worker, the job would be almost done. And here’s the interesting part.
We didn’t always have Federal workers unions. They were made legal by John Fitzgerald Kennedy, and the interesting point is … he knew he could never get that kind of nonsense past Congress, so he did it by Executive Order.
Which certainly raises an interesting possibility for the current President …
Setting that aside, in the short term, I’d push for a new law saying any government department can fire up to 1% of the workforce per year without cause. I’m fed up to here with un-fireable jerks holding the reins of power. That was NEVER what the Founders intended for the country.
What a world! The sun is shining, I’m going for a walk.
My best to each of you,
PS: When you comment please QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING, so we can be clear what you are referring to. Seriously. Do it. I know it seems clear to you without the quote, but we can’t read your mind.