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Free Minds & Free Markets

Why We Have Daylight Saving Time and Why We Should Scrap It

It's time for daylight savings time to go.

Yesterday was the start of Daylight Saving Time, and if anyone would like to form a SuperPAC to destroy politicians who jack around with my circadian rhythm I'll gladly chip in a few bucks. The twice-annual timepiece adjustment is outdated and irritating. States should pick a time zone and commit.

Let's first dispense with some of the myths behind Daylight Saving Time (DST). Many people assume we enacted DST to help farmers. That's nonsense. Most of my relatives who aren't in prison are farmers. I have no idea what time they wake up in the morning because whenever I visit they've already eaten lunch by the time I'm mixing a hangover cure. They rise before dawn to feed the cows, mow the corn, construct scarecrows, etc. All without directives from Congress.

Daylight Saving Time came about because of World War I. Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States all pushed our clocks forward to better coordinate waking hours with light bulb use, thereby conserving electricity. The program lapsed until World War II, when President Franklin Roosevelt instituted "War Time Zones," which were basically the same thing, only with a cooler-sounding name. Astonishingly, despite originating as a temporary FDR government program, War Time Zones actually ceased at the conclusion of the war. Thereafter time zones defaulted to municipalities until 1966, when Congress enacted a permanent annual Daylight Saving Time, in part to standardize the plethora of discordant clocks across the nation.

Today all of these reasons are outdated. We probably won't go to war with Germany again for another 20 or 30 years. And all of the economic benefits seem to cancel each other out. While we saved about 1 percent on electricity when first enacting DST, that figure is now offset by an increase in air conditioning. The idea that we'll all revert back to discordant municipal time zones set by the sundial in our mayor's front yard is utter nonsense. Everyone I know owns a smartphone, set automatically by a clutch of nerds in Cupertino.

Each year a dozen or so state legislatures consider ending Daylight Saving Time, only to drop the measure and return to squabbling about transgender bathrooms or determining what the official state reptile should be. (The Moutain Boomer, of course.) Legally, if a state decides to drop Daylight Saving Time, it must then procure an exemption from the U.S. Department of Transportation. It's possible Secretary Elaine Chao would enforce federal time regulations with an iron fist and scream "this is the hill I will die on!" but I think we could probably win her over.

There's a healthy debate about whether places like California should scrap DST and permanently move an hour forward or backwards. Television companies consider darkness their ally, and know that the earlier the sun sets the quicker viewers drop irritating habits like family picnics or soccer games and return to the vital activity of watching The Big Bang Theory. Conversely, the Chamber of Commerce and its chorus of retailers lust for delayed sunsets, because shoppers will stay out later buying The Big Bang Theory paraphernalia at malls.

I'm a devout evening person and also a shill for the Chamber of Commerce, so I'd prefer we postpone sunset until around 11:30 at night. If nothing else, to punish all of you sanctimonious morning people for bragging about what you accomplished before breakfast, such as mowing your corn, constructing scarecrows, watching an episode of The Big Bang Theory, and so forth.

That said, I think I speak for most Americans in saying: Just pick one! If Arizona and the territory of Guam can figure out how to commit to one time zone, surely the rest of us can.

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  • Ron||

    its already been show that after time changes there are more heart attacks and care wreck so in liberal speak if getting rid of it saves just one life then its worth it. I hate the twice a year time change.

  • NoVaNick||

    One of the biggest fans of DST and moving it up to earlier in the spring/later in the fall is now Sen. Ed Markey, who was my rep when I lived in Mass. and one of the biggest progtards there is. His reasoning was that it reduced crime and saved energy, based, like almost all prog ideas, on suspect data from the 1970s.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Come on, not all progressive ideas are based on suspect data from the 1970s. Many progressive ideas are based on completely racist ideas from the 1920s.

  • ||

    Interesting article. So I'll add minimum wage to gun control as issues that make racists and progressives (usually the same people) cream their jeans.

  • NoVaNick||

    DST is a racist idea too-during the Jim Crow era, Black people would often only travel during nighttime to avoid police harassment. Then you have the whole urban white fear of criminals thing, which was one of the reasons Sen Ma(lar)key supports DST.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    I hadn't heard that, though i did read that Woodrow Wilson pushed for DST legislation in part because he wanted to be able to play golf later in the day. As if he wasn't enough of a dick already.

  • Heretic Jones||

    The amount of daylight relative to darkness changes seasonally regardless of what a clock says. Anyone wishing to travel by night to avoid detection wouldn't really need a clock to tell them it's dark now. And the clock doesn't make it dark any sooner or later. Although...the darn spring forward thing is putting more sunlight on my lawn and burning it up. Just kidding.

  • Johnimo||

    "Although...the darn spring forward thing is putting more sunlight on my lawn and burning it up."

    Great sense of humor! It's also melting the snow faster on my x-country ski trail … hate it.

  • XenoZooValentine||

    If anything I would think traveling at night would get you more police harassment.

    "What are you doing out so late, citizen?"

    Or maybe that's just my experience. Used to hang out with a friend in another town late at night for gaming sessions; getting pulled over randomly by bored squirrel chasers was a regular thing.

  • Juice||

    Keep it and scrap "standard" time.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    Now we're getting somewhere.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Your both worse than Hitler.

  • Set Us Up The Chipper||

    Absolutely. I live on the western edge of the Central Time zone...and I'm pretty far south, so we get precious little daylight as it is. Even with DST, we have a sunset of around 8:03 on summer solstice.

  • Set Us Up The Chipper||

    Oops, I meant Eastern Edge

  • Johnimo||

    "so we get precious little daylight as it is."

    Really? I'm pretty certain that everyone on Earth gets exactly the same amount of daylight, give or take a few seconds or minutes (at most) because of mountains and valleys. Wanna' have a beer and argue this inane point? Meet me at Neptune's Brewery and we'll put it to a vote of the Brew Masters.

  • Johnimo||

    Oh, I forgot about sailors on Nuclear subs! You one of them?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    That would be easier for me. With standard time, it gets light out by 3 AM where I live. Which would suck. I would rather have it stay dark until 8 AM in winter as the trade off.

  • Brandon Lyon||

    I construct robotic scarecrows that mow the corn for me.

  • CE||

    Nebraska hardest hit.

  • Chili Dogg||

    Technically, a moment is equal to 90 seconds, so it would be 40 libertarian moments.

    To quote Dave Barry, "I'm not making this up!" Here is proof: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moment_(time).

    And I'm not crazy! My mama had me tested!

  • Jerryskids||

    If we get rid of DST, how will I know when to check the batteries in my smoke detector?

  • MikeP2||

    ^^^

    or just get the never-change detectors with 10year lithiums

  • Juice||

    I've got a couple of those and I didn't realize how sensitive they would be. Sometimes all I have to do is turn on the oven to set one off. There's no visible smoke whatsoever, but that thing detects something and lets me know about it. Sometimes I just have to take it down and wrap it in a towel just to cook dinner.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    This is a much funnier comment if the reader imagines you're talking about your junk.

  • Zeb||

    I had to put in hard wired ones when I rebuilt my house. And they are way too sensitive, so they are never connected since I smoke and cook things regularly. So safety mandates have made my house less safe.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    This is also a funnier comment if you imagine it's about your junk.

  • Robert||

    Why do people call it "junk"?

  • XenoZooValentine||

    Because you keep it in your trunks?

  • CE||

    We'll get rid of smoke detector regulations too.

  • Johnimo||

    "If we get rid of DST, how will I know when to check the batteries in my smoke detector?"

    Best comment of the day. LOL

  • Sevo||

    I don't care which one, but pick one and quit the idiotic semi-annual change.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    We probably won't go to war with Germany again for another 20 or 30 years.

    Read a paper. We're going to be at war with everyone within the next four years.

    At least I think we can all agree that EDT is the best time zone in the world.

  • SIV||

    EST, commie

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Erectile Dysfunction Time, dummy.

  • NoVaNick||

    The New England states and NY east of the Hudson are probably better suited to the Atlantic Canada time zone.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    We don't want nuthin to do with them Canuckistanians.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    +30 minutes

  • Zeb||

    It's always a tough call when you are on the line. That would probably make sense, especially for New England. But there are benefits to being in the same time zone as the rest of the east coast.

  • Anomalous||

    We've always been at war with Eastasia.

  • CE||

    No one ever expects the Spanish Armada.

  • Entropy Drehmaschine Void||

    What's all this then?

    Changing clocks?

    Next thing you know will be an Argy Pope!

  • Memory Hole||

    If they have to do this then they should slow roll us into the change over a few days instead of this cold shower routine.

  • NoVaNick||

    Few things mess with me more than springing forward. And the earlier they move it up, the worse it is. I do adjust after a couple of weeks. So at this point, I say just keep it year round, rather than going back for 4 months a year.

  • Rhywun||

    A couple weeks to make up one lost hour?! You must get horrible jet lag.

  • NoVaNick||

    Not really-I can adjust to a 7 hour time difference after a couple of days. Something about having to wake up while its still dark in March though. Maybe its because the cat wants to be let out at 6 am instead of 7.

  • Rhywun||

    Ah, I see. Me, I couldn't care less how dark it is in the morning. All I'm doing is getting ready for work and commuting. It could be dark until noon for all I care.

  • NoVaNick||

    The traffic for my evening commute is much worse after DST because of the sun angle and more traffic-studies show people drive more after DST because they run errands with the extra daylight. So, I don't really get to enjoy much of it by the time I get home.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Move closer to work, you dope.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Or just use government provided mass transit!

  • ||

    My alarm went off this morning and I startled the dog by saying, out loud "What is this shit???" The darkness in the a.m. really bugs me.

  • XenoZooValentine||

    To be fair, this is pretty much always my reaction to waking up.

  • Zeb||

    It is pretty funny that now we are only on "standard time" for 1/3 of the year.

  • John||

    The objections to daylight savings time are quite puzzling. The fact is sunshine is good. Human beings are not bats. Humans needs sunshine to be in good health both physically and mentally. People spend more time awake during the evenings than they do in the mornings. It, therefore, makes sense to move the clock forward come spring so that people enjoy the maximum amount of daylight available rather than sleeping through some of it in the morning.

    It is really that simple. I have never understood the eggheads who object to it.

  • Tony||

    People also do not need to have their sleep rhythm artificially shifted by an hour twice a year. That affects everyone, whereas not everyone works the same hours.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    This is the second time i've had to agree with Tony in less than a week. Jesus Christ, what a disaster.

  • Paloma||

    Yup me too

  • Chili Dogg||

    That is a sure sign of the end of the world.

  • Chili Dogg||

    Change that to: That is a sure sign of the apocalypse!

    I think that sounds better.

  • XenoZooValentine||

    I kissed somebody on the alpaca lips once.

  • mpercy||

    And yet one of the most common "solutions" proposed to changing the clocks is to shift working hours. Everyone is supposed to work 8-4 instead of 9-5, local TV new starts at 5AM instead of 6AM, schoolday starts at 6:15AM instead of 7:15AM etc.

    Still have to change your sleep patterns by one hour, so this "solution" is plain stupid. By comparison, changing the clock is easy, esp. with so many clocks (cell phones, iPads, computers on NTP) automatically adjust.

    I think there is something to be said for moving that daylight that would otherwise occur as the days get longer from 4AM-5AM (or thereabouts) when most people are sleeping to 8PM-9PM (or thereabouts) when most people would use it for cookouts, round of golf after work, etc.

  • CE||

    Can't we hang giant mirrors and shutters in space to physically shift the daylight? That would save having to change clocks or work hours.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Tony the snowflake. Are you telling me you NEVER stay up late?

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Tony actually said something that is correct? Holy shit!

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    If somebody wants to adjust his waking hours to take advantage of that, more power to him. But why do we need the government to FORCE us to do this? Is it really that vital?

  • John||

    The force you to do that by having a standard government time. If "how dare the government tell me what time it is" is the hill you want to die on, well good luck. But that is a separate issue from whether we should have standard or daylight savings time, since both times are enforced by the government.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I don't harbor any illusions that the government gives a fuck what I think about anything. The text of the Constitution is just "FYTW". But that doesn't answer the question: why is bouncing back and forth between the two standards necessary.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    And it's interesting that all of the reasons being advanced in favor of these time shifts boil down to personal preference and nothing more.

  • John||

    I think the science of people benefiting from daylight is not a matter of personal opinion. You can't benefit from the daylight if you are asleep.

  • CE||

    Exactly. No one's stopping anyone from being awake for all the daylight hours. They're just forcing you to go to work at a certain time.

  • Set Us Up The Chipper||

    Fuck you, I'm a night owl.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    I benefit from being asleep when i'm asleep, though. And i could not fall asleep last night for the life of me, because my circadian rhythms were convinced that it was only 10 pm when really it was 11.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Many people's schedules are not determined by the sun. It would be good if it were, of course, since that's how our bodies are designed to run. My employer seems very disinterested in that, though.

    And I'm still struck by how the arguments presented here are generally prefaced by "I like..."

  • Bronson, Missouri||

    Look, we'll just privatize it. Open it up, get some competition going. We'll have 5,10, however many providers of time, each with their own way of doing it. Some might be 24 hours. Some might go metric and change the units so that there are 100 during a day. Some will have daylight savings time, some wont. And we'll all get to choose which one we like and use it for ourselves. Market solution. Libertarian moment. (although when that moment occurs may vary from provider to provider)

  • Rhywun||

    I think most people agree it's the time-shift that sucks. Let's keep the current time and not go back!

  • DaveSs||

    The problem is the costs are separated from the benefits which occur 1-6 months later.

    One to two days of a mild adjustment vs months of benefit

  • Sevo||

    What "benefit"?

  • DaveSs||

    The cost (that is, changing the few remaining manually set clocks) is in March and November.

    The benefit is that in Summer, sunsets are according to the clock, an hour later than they otherwise would be. More opportunity for some good family time, fun, outdoor recreation and all that jazz.

    The benefit of returning to Standard is that in December/January sunrises will by and large be between 7AM and 8AM instead of 8AM and 9AM.

  • GroundTruth||

    People spend more time awake during the evenings than they do in the mornings

    Not everyone. Yes, in a city, perhaps, given an environment devoid of decent outdoor activities (aside from rioting), and messed up with 24 hour lighting.

    As my garden got larger and larger, I started to realize why farmers (contrary to what the article states) typically would prefer to stay on standard time: more time before their day job to get stuff done. It's a heck of a lot more pleasant to be weeding the beans or tying up the cukes in a cool dawn, than to be doing the same job in the heat at the end of the day.

    Yes, pick one and stick to it. My vote is for standard time.

  • John||

    If we had standard time, the sunrise at high summer would be around 4:30 for most of the country. I live in a city and like outdoor activities. I also have done a fair amount of work on farms. And no farmer I know who doesn't run a dairy is out in the field at 4:30.

  • GroundTruth||

    And no farmer I know who doesn't run a dairy is out in the field at 4:30.

    Limited experience on my part perhaps? When I was in a farming area (in ME), the few neighbors that I had were doing dairy or chickens. Maybe different with planted crops?

  • ||

    Maybe different with planted crops?

    Very yes. I also think you're inventing a bit of an anachronism out of anecdote. You know what's worse than damaging an piece of equipment or getting it stuck out in the field? Damaging it or getting it stuck in the dark. Certainly plenty of early work to do and lots of crop farmers who have livestock on the side, but nowadays 'weeding the beans' means 'wait for the dew to burn off so you can run the applicator' more than anything. And, when it boils down to mechanization, 'make hay while the sun shines.'

  • DarrenM||

    Cows don't particularly appreciate having to stand around with their udders full waiting for the farmer to get his ass out of bed.

  • Chili Dogg||

    Planted crops sleep later.

  • ||

    The objections to daylight savings time are quite puzzling.

    I grew up with the farmers in Indiana, so, not only do the cows not care, but I/we never had a switch growing up. So, it's all fucking nonsense if you ask me. At this point, my phone runs basally on zulu and wakes me up well before the sun comes up at whatever local time anyway. So, all that's left is getting to bed on time. And, in that regard, I gave up on +/- 1 hr. shifts decades ago.

    My favorite is when people who still rise with alarm clocks forget to set them forward and curse the farmers for instituting daylight savings time.

  • Praveen R.||

    The world is different. A lot of people have more flexible hours. People have DVRs, so TV schedules not a big deal either. A lot more 24 hour shops. Hey, you want more daylight? Just get up earlier , dammit!!! Do you ahve to wake up at the same time every damn day of the year? A lot of people already adjust their sleep hours for weekdays vs the weekend.

    Get rid of the twice a year switch. Split the difference and stick with one time.

  • rrgg||

    Someone writes this ever year, this time Heaton. In most cases it's not someone who grew up or lives in the north, and they usually recommend staying on DST year round. Before you make your argument consider that the effect really depends on where you live and how far east you are in your time zone. For example, without the shift we'd have kids walking dark roads to school.

  • Rhywun||

    Then change the school hours.

    My school started at 7:30 - I traveled there in the dark all winter long.

  • creech||

    Absolutely shocking! You mean kids still walk to school in some districts? Back when I walked to school, in Coolidge's term, the school district was strict - 1 mile as the crow flies. So I could either walk about 2 miles on paved or cut through a woods and a marshy area. Even the blind kid with the service dog wasn't exempt. Many the times he arrived in homeroom covered with mud and soaking wet.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    What's your position on wooden nickels? Don't take any, right?

  • creech||

    I love silver dimes before FDR got his face on em.

  • Rhywun||

    Coins from the 10s and 20s were beautiful. Then they started putting pictures of ugly dead white guys on them, except the penny which already had one.

  • CE||

    I had to walk 3 miles. And it was usually snowing. And uphill both ways. I lived in an Escher drawing in an icebox.

  • CE||

    For the sake of an abundance of caution, we should close down the schools then.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I cannot imagine the assholes in Washington D.C. giving up this deeply cherished power to fuck with our health. Nothing establishes the owner/serf relationship better than dictating how we set our clocks.

  • DaveSs||

    I love it and don't you dare take it away.

    I like sunset in the summer to be after 8PM.
    I like sunrise in the morning in winter to be before 8AM

    Considering most of our clocks automatigally change these days you can probably go about your business without taking any action.

    Try an experiment
    Turn your clock back an hour from June to September. That extra hour will be missed.
    Turn your clock ahead in December and January. You probably won't notice the extra hour in the evening, but you will definitely notice the lack of that hour in the morning, especially if you are sending kids out to wait on a bus.

  • colorblindkid||

    I am with you. The hatred of DST, just like the hatred of the US customary system, is due to American self-loathing and the notion that Americans are dumber than everybody else. I'm an engineer and do math everyday. I love having a base of 12 in measurements instead of 10. It allows divisions of 6,4,3, and 2 into whole numbers instead of just 5 and 2.

  • DaveSs||

    Lets go for it.

    Someone get the geneticists need to work on mutating us to have 12 fingers and toes.

  • GroundTruth||

    How bout a combination system where "10" means 1 dozen and no singles? i.e. "base 12". That would have the best of both worlds, many divisions, and also ease of math by moving the decimal.

  • Robert||

    You mean moving the douzimal.

  • Rhywun||

    American self-loathing and the notion that Americans are dumber than everybody else

    That is a curious leap of logic. I am sure there are lots of meter-wielding Europeans that don't like shifting their time twice a year either.

  • DaveSs||

    There is more reason for Europeans not shift time given how much further north much of the population is located. Beyond 45 to 50 in latitude, daylight hours are either far too long or far too short to make much difference.

    Our most populous latitudes being between 35 and 45 makes the switch much more useful for us.

  • Sevo||

    "...makes the switch much more useful for us."

    How is it "useful"?

  • DaveSs||

    I'm defining useful as "based upon the clock, when are most people awake and able to make productive use of the existing hours of daylight"

    Considering 6-7AM is roughly when most people get up and 10-12PM is when they go to sleep.

    In summer, sunrise is almost universally across the country at least 1 hour and often 2 hours before 6AM.

    http://www.popularmechanics.co.....ving-time/

  • Set Us Up The Chipper||

    12 is a highly composite number, has more factors than any number smaller than it. 1,2,3,4,6,12..SIX FACTORS!!

    Was the first paper that Ramanujan published, I believe. Here is some learnin'

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2JM2oImb9Qg

  • John||

    If we kept standard time, the sun would rise around 4:30 am throughout most of the US during high summer. I don't want to get up at 4:30 am. But I do plan to stay up past 9 pm most nights. So, I would like my daylight later please.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    Pipe down, Ben Franklin. (while in Paris)

  • Citizen X - #6||

    "Early to rise and early to bed
    Makes a man healthy, but socially dead"

  • CE||

    I need seven.

  • CATT||

    LOL That's what I get; 10pm to 4am or 11pm to 5am. It works well.

  • ||

    I'm with DaveSs and John on this one. I like late sunsets in the summer and early sunrises in the winter and I think most other people do too. The switch is necessary to facilitate that. Some people just complain about everything. If we did go to a constant time year round, they'd soon complain about that too. Toughen up, people!

  • Brandybuck||

    Libertarian: "People are now talking about getting rid of DST! We're winning! We're winning!"

  • NoVaNick||

    I think abolishing the time change would probably be the most popular thing Congress has done since I don't know when

  • John||

    I think most people would hate it. Remember, the people who like it have no reason to complain. Also, I doubt Congress expanded it because their constituents were all demanding that it be ended.

  • NoVaNick||

    John, I don't know a single person who liked having DST moved up to early March. Even here in the DC area where I live, it is still usually too cold then to enjoy the outdoors with the extra hour of daylight and makes the mornings even colder. In fact, we are getting whacked with several inches of snow tomorrow.

    If your going to have DST, it makes more sense to start it in mid/late April like it used to be.

  • Diane Merriam||

    But you see, the candy manufacturers wanted Halloween to be light out for longer, so we had to push it back ... and if we pushed it back on one side of the solstice we had to match it on the other side as well. Otherwise people might start asking just why we changed it after all and someone might learn the (OMG) truth.

  • Justin C||

    I would take this even further: Use your own local time zone based around noon where you are, and use apps like a Google Calendar to automatically offset times whenever you have to propose a call or a meeting with people in different local time zones.

    This is incredibly easy to do today. We have the technology. If I want to schedule a call with someone who lives in a time zone that's 15mins west of me, Google can easily offset that in my calendar, just as it does now (and in the future, in my email to the prospect as well.)

  • John||

    The reason why they developed time zones was because the railroads needed uniform time to run on. With modern technology, I suppose airlines and businesses could run on such a system as you propose. But I think it is a lot easier to have set time zones and one official time set by the government like we do. Of all Quixotic hills Libertarians choose to die on, this has to be the most curious of them.

  • creech||

    Yeah, like Amtrak cares what time its trains run on.

  • CE||

    Why not have the country on one time zone then? People could go to work at different times based on where they live. Or not -- most jobs aren't a punch-the-clock type of job anymore anyway.

  • Paloma||

    Just like H&R It's 10:17pm where I live, but 12:17am 3/14/17 on H&R

  • Gorbag||

    I've been advocating this for years. What technology can do for us NOW is allow everyone to have their own personal time zone - whatever is most convenient - that you carry with you like your portable cell number. So you don't have to change your watch when you hop on a plane. How does technology help? Every time someone emails you or mentions a time, your phone immediately translates that to your personal time zone! (We all walk around with bluetooth earpieces don't we?) Now add that ability to our own political preferences and we can just translate jokes and comments into our own preferred system as well. Then we'll all just get along...

  • Longtobefree||

    The Libertarian approach is to ignore what the government says, and get up or go to sleep whenever YOU feel like it. Of course, this does require you to run a business of your own so you can open and close as you wish. As long as no protected classes of things objects, of course.
    I have found that dark shades let me sleep when I wish, and electric lights let me be awake after dark, so the rest of the world can go on it's merry way.

  • Buddy Bizarre||

    This has been working for me. Of course, I hire orphans to open up the shop at the expected times & do the heavy work while I sit back and allow the incoming capital to wash over me.

  • Paloma||

    Well it's obvious none of you have a Trump voting conservative boyfriend who thinks arbeit macht frei.

  • lafe.long||

    Here's an idea: Split the difference.

    Change the clocks by half an hour, then leave them the fuck alone.

  • Paloma||

    Just like Chavez did in Venezuela! He moved the clocks back half an hour. The one good thing he did.

  • Merl3noir||

    The Left is always wanting compromise... so I say we compromise on this. We will just get rid of the move to DST and keep the move to STD Time. After all most people complain the most about the move to DST, but you don't here much complaining about moving back to STD. Its a Win, Win.

  • Anomalous||

  • Fuck You - Cut Spending||

    Pants-shitting about something that most people actually like.

    Those that can't handle DST/EST switching are untermensch and deserve the ostracism for being even weaker than Tony, Tulpa, shreek, Mary Stack, etc..

  • Don't look at me.||

    Anything that slows the consumption of television is a good thing.

  • CE||

    Californians would prefer to stay on daylight savings time year round, but there is a federal law stipulating that states stay on standard time from November to March. States can opt out of daylight savings time, but they can't choose it year round. Which is stupid, just do it. Who are the feds gonna believe, their own rules or 40 million Californians, some of whom control the smart phones?

  • Don't look at me.||

    "Who are the feds gonna believe, their own rules or 40 million Californians.."

    Rules are paramount.

  • mpercy||

    DST sanctuary states?

  • Longtobefree||

    Who you gonna believe, the feds, or a state that is going to secede and become irrelevant anyway?

  • mpercy||

    They could do it on the Friday/Saturday 2AM boundary instead of the Saturday/Sunday 2AM. Give an extra day to adjust before work-week starts for most people.

  • Chasman1965||

    I've noticed that how people feel about Daylight savings time has to do with where in the time zone they live. Here on the eastern edge of the Central time zone, I have an hour less of usable daylight after work than I would have in nearby Tallahassee (which is on the western edge of the Eastern Time Zone). If I lived in Tallahasse, I wouldn't want DST, normal time would be great. Here, in Pensacola, I wish we could stay on DST year round.

  • ColoradoKook||

    I used to live in Jackson County, the easternmost Florida county in the central time zone, so I appreciate your frustration. At least Pensacola is 150 miles away from the edge.

  • Uncle Jay||

    RE: Why We Have Daylight Saving Time and Why We Should Scrap It

    But if we terminated the concept of daylight savings time, what other government would go next?
    Not invading another country?
    Eliminating the income tax?
    Not putting surviellance on all the little people?
    Going through due process on civil asset forfeiture?
    I mean, where would it all end?

  • Roger the Shrubber||

    Who are these pussies who can't handle a one hour time shift twice a year? Your safe space is Arizona.

  • NoVaNick||

    Someone proposed getting rid of time zones altogether and using only GMT/UTC, so then Eastern US Time would always be UTC -5, and Western US would be UTC-8. Thus, when its noon in London, in NYC it would be 7 am, and in LA it would be 4 am. You wouldn't need to bother with time changes or DST at all.

  • CATT||

    It's way past time for Daylight Saving Time to go!!! It serves no purpose whatever and is abominable.

  • Old Monkey||

    Daylight Savings Time should occur close to the Spring and Fall Equinox. Since the dodo heads realized it and made changes, I've been good with it. You wake up when it's sunshine, and you go to bed shortly after year round. Getting up too far ahead of sunrise, messes with biorhythms. Changes around equinox don't. Last thing I want is get up long before it's daylight.

  • CATT||

    I love getting up before sunrise. Some sunrises are better than sunsets. But, also everything is quiet and cool.

  • Paloma||

    Sunrises are cool but not colorful like sunsets.

  • TimothyLane||

    Yes, the big nuisance is having to change twice a year. It's easy to move the clocks (most of which these days are digital) for ward in the spring, but painful for a day or so losing that hour. In the autumn the change is much more tedious for digital clocks, but you gain an hour. I'd prefer to do neither.

  • Freedomist||

    Why stop at Daylight Savings Time? Let's also scrap Time Zones and have localities on local solar time? Governments think they need to regulate time because many of their laws are time based, like election, public parking and government building hours.

  • JeremyR||

    Let me point out that even with Daylight Savings, the Sun starts to come up at about 4:30 in the morning. At least the sky gets light and it shows up about half an hour later.

    Without it, it would be doing this at 3:30!

    Thanks to the whole axial tilt thing, the amount of daylight varies greatly during the year. You can't change that. You can change the abstract concept of when our "day" is. Which is what Daylight Savings does.

  • PTKANE||

    "Astonishingly, despite originating as a temporary FDR government program, War Time Zones actually ceased at the conclusion of the war." HAHA good one!

  • RT Deco||

    Ideally, we'd modify our clocks to automatically add or subtract a certain number of seconds to every day just before midnight. Between the winter solstice and the summer solstice, additional seconds would be added before midnight; the rest of the year, seconds would be removed.

    Adding or subtracting just 30 seconds every day would be enough to keep the time of sunrise fairly consistent throughout the year in Florida. Adding or subtracting a minute would accomplish the same for Massachusetts. The small change would not be enough to throw off anyone's circadian rhythm.

    But ... we have clocks that are well attuned to the 24-hour solar cycle, but were developed and perfected well before the concept of standard time. So moving back and forth an hour is probably the best we can do to limit the changes in daylight in the morning, which is the entire point of DST.

    Those who don't like it should grow up or move to Arizona (but not on a reservation, because the Navajo observe DST).

  • Gymrat3560||

    I agree there should be more daylight in the evening. There'd actually be less crime that way. Making daylight savings year round would be ideal but you can bet come December with daylight savings there'd be complaints about children going to school before sunrise. That being the case I'll take half a loaf with daylight savings from March to early November rather than year round standard time which is what some parents of schoolkids would ultimately demand.

  • josh||

    I'm n favor of DST for some people, but not all. Make it random. That way, it's like a time change mystery.

  • Patches O'Houlihan||

    Having lived my entire life in Arizona, the only thing that pisses me off about DST is when it ends (or does it begin?) in November. Sunday football starts at 11AM instead of 10, which sucks.

  • Mike66||

    I started a petition on Whitehouse.gov to put an end to this nonsense. Go sign it and maybe we can make it go away!

    The link is over 50 characters so I put a space after petition/ and time- so you can copy and paste then take the spaces out.

    https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/ abolish-daylight-saving-time- all-states-and-territories

  • XenoZooValentine||

    PROTIP: Nobody cares about online petitions.

  • plusafdotcom||

    "I'm a devout evening person and also a shill for the Chamber of Commerce, so I'd prefer we postpone sunset until around 11:30 at night. "

    Be sure to take your summer vacations in Iceland or Scandinavia... :)

  • Roger Wilco||

    Lets compromise and only get rid of one of the shifts. That way we're always springing forward (or backwards). In 12 years it'll be dark at noon. Fuck it.

  • Garagefather||

    The bright spot here is, now that round 1 of the biannual DST bitch-fest is complete, you can go back to bitching about more pressing issues like your iphone 7's lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack or that your Barista used 2% instead of skim milk in your non fat skinny latte.

  • Priscilla King||

    Hardly worth launching a petition over, but so true. I learned about the Time Change from elders who solemnly told me that it identified FDR with the Powers of Darkness, because according to the Bible it was a mark of arrogance having reached the point of real evil when "He shall think to change times and laws"...(My elders always emphasized the "think.")

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    Either scrap it completely, or go to full-year DST everywhere!

  • Johnimo||

    This essay is a perfect example of imprecise language used effectively to precisely convey an idea. Kudos to you, Andrew Heaton. Let's put Daylight Savings and the graduated income tax into the same dustbin of history and light it aflame …. the b.s. has gone on long enough!

  • XenoZooValentine||

    You are too educated stupid to appreciate the wonder of nature's four-sided harmonious Daylight Savings Timecube.

  • Anastasia Beaverhausen||

    Thanks to Daylight Time, here in the summer it's often still over 100F at 9pm. So much for "energy conservation".

  • Mr. Dyslexic||

    Only a politician would think that cutting 12 inches from the top of a blanket and sewing it back onto the bottom would make it longer.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Amen. It's @#$*ing stupid. It's astrology celebrated as science in some circles.

  • SimonJester753||

    I want to keep DST. It gives me more hours of useful daylight after work. I can't choose what time I get up, I don't care if it's light or dark as I'm just heading to the office. But once I get out, I'd like to enjoy some daylight. Hell, I'd keep it year 'round.

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