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Regulation of the Day 61: Big Screen TVs – Mankind’s Doom!

On November 4, California regulators may vote to ban big-screen televisions. The large sets use more energy than they would prefer. Commissioner Julia Levin claims the ban "will actually save consumers money and help the California economy grow and create new clean, sustainable jobs." It is easy to imagine the ban costing tv manufacturing jobs; less so the jobs that would take their place. Fortunately, the ban isn't terribly enforceable. Consumers can just drive to Arizona, Nevada, or Oregon to get the kind of tv they want. A final point on semantics: what does "sustainable" even mean, anyway? It is a meaningless buzz term, right up there with "synergy" and "paradigm." This decade's equivalent of "social justice." If anything, use of the word "sustainable" signals that a person knows not of what they speak. If you're unable to defend a proposal on the merits, just use fashionable buzz words that poll well.