Evil Book

When you complain about Congress and things that somebody could do with a given law–which should be often–you might find yourself hearing in response, “Oh, now, don’t be ridiculous. Nobody would take the law to mean that.” Well now you can use this as a perfect example of how just being a little non-specific can cause real headaches.

Reader’s Digest Version: The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 is supposed to decrease the levels of bad stuff, especially lead, in stuff that we hand over to kids (i.e. 12 and under) to play with. Now that, on the surface, sounds like something nobody could bitch about, yes?

Well, here’s the problem. Well, the problem apart from the fact that it could put a lot of crafty people out of business and make selling used clothing more trouble than it’s worth, I mean. Specifically we’re dealing with the books for kids part of this. Even though there’s been no evidence apparently that books have been a source of worry and dismay for hurting kids (other than making them think, which is always painful for everybody involved), books are included in the affected items because nobody thought to exclude them.

But when we have a Congress that can’t even be arsed to cite where in the Constitution they’re getting the power to pass the laws they are passing, what else can you expect, I suppose?

Anyway, to find out what you can do to help with this nonsense, because now Congress is trying to fix the mess they’ve created, check the ALA notice here. Thanks to The Neil for the headsup.