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About this time, every year, half the world’s population performs a mystical ritual of moving their clocks by one hour.

Anyone I ask, “why?”, just smiles sheepishly and has difficulty explaining how this will make the world a better place.

Upon digging deeper, it seems that the original idea was a scam left over from last century.

The printers’ union in the U.S. conspired to support the ‘daylight saving’ campaign as it would cause two different train schedules to be printed every year, instead of the previous once per year.

This is a classic example of what economists call “Public Choice Theory (PCT)” where the concentrated benefits flow to the select few (the printers) with the costs spread amongst the many (the public).

Somehow they got away with it and this continues even though no one uses printed schedules anymore.

Perhaps there are many other obsolete regulations that continue to burden us.

I wonder how many other examples we can identify.

Let’s make a game of hunting them down and killing them off, like the Onion Board, the Egg Board and, more recently, the Potato Board.


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1 Comment

  • Wonderful to read this. You cited the Onion Board, the Egg Board, and the Potato Board, but what about the exquisitely named Bread Board (which Queensland finally dumped in the 1980s) and the Wheat Board which has a sorry history indeed. My good friend Colin Ubergang, a wheat farmer from NSW took them to court and won a major constitutional victory for the ability to trade freely between the States. Subsequent Wheat Board shenanigans have made the news since, and the history of the Wool Commission, its predecessors and successors provides yet more evidence of the failure of centralised fat controllers.
    Queensland endured one year of the fiasco of daylight saving, 1971. I was working in Mackay on a major construction project where I drove from home in Mackay to arrive at the Hay Point construction site 20 km distant by 6 am every morning each day, every day (it was a 3 shift 7 days a week project). It was always after dark when I drove home. My young 3 year old son had no idea he was supposed to go to sleep an hour earlier and wake up according to the government-mandated new timetable. I have never been so tired. Years later I started a desktop publishing company. We had 9 computers and various gadgets, wrist watches, car clocks wall clocks, which, had daylight saving been re-introduced, all have to have the times changed. My office manager was a fierce supporter of ‘Daylight saving’. I told her to just start an hour earlier and go home an hour earlier. She was delighted to travel in non-peak times. Surely it’s time the government set fixed goalposts and stopped operating under Simon Sez rules. Simon Sez shut the gates. Simon Sez open the gates, Simon Sez carbon taxes, Simon Sez get jabbed. Time for Simon to stand by a simple and fair rule book, fixed goalposts, level playing field. Liberty Tax eliminates the ever-changing envy taxes on employment and enterprise. Coal-fired electricity eliminates the darkness and is the best daylight saving resource yet discovered.

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