Nanny State

NYT Takes Toys from Babies


Over at Reason Contributing Editor Wally Olson goes completely ballistic (in a good way!) on the terrible editorial in The New York Times today on onerous new testing requirements for toys. Here's the line in the Times editorial that sets off Olsonian fireworks:

The delay has caused confusion and allowed opponents to foment needless fears that the law could injure smaller enterprises like libraries, resale shops and handmade toy businesses.

I've written about the many problems with the toy testing legislation, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), here.

The cost of testing each individual model will essentially close down the operations of small, handmade toy makers and secondhand toy sellers when it is enforced. One manufacturer of wooden toys, Selecta, has already pulled out of the U.S. market, rather than get tangled up in the testing requirements. So it's hard to understand in what sense those fears are "needless." Or, as Olson has it:

Got that? "Confusion" about the law, and "delay" in implementing it, are the real problems. Fears that small business will be hurt are "needless" and are being "fomented" by presumably sinister opponents.

Or, put differently: anyone who imagines this law might be impractical for libraries, resale shops, handmade toy businesses, or other small businesses is just imagining things — fooled, perhaps, by misinformation spread by the law's opponents.

Stop being a bunch of babies, toymakers. Pull it together. The New York Times knows what's best.