CPSIA Update: Destruction Continues; Congress Back Home

By February 17, 2009Regulations

The latest on the disaster that is the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act from Walter Olson at Overlawyered.com, “CPSIA and vintage books, cont’d: slicing the past.” Yeah, “cont’d” is right:

The article I wrote for City Journal Thursday on the legal fate of pre-1985 children’s books has been drawing all sorts of attention, and all I can acknowledge are a few of the highlights. Education expert Jay Greene and Darleen Click at Protein Wisdom are among those put in mind of Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451. “Of all the risks facing American children, old books must rank very, very low,” writes leading education blogger Joanne Jacobs. Will Benton: “Every time I learn something new about the CPSIA, I get more enraged.” Illinois blogger T. Varner notices an ad for a local thrift store saying it would no longer accept donations of a “very long list” of items including “children’s books published before 1985″; only later does it click. Hector Owen: “This is what happens when Congress passes these bloated bills that nobody reads, and the President signs them, and then we start to find out what was in there. Oh dear, what did they just do last week?” JDub at Ace of Spades: “Overlawyered has pretty much flooded the zone on this — I don’t want to simply link all of the things he’s got, so give him a look. … Go. Read. Be angry.” And Mark Bennett, of criminal law blog Defending People, gives it a mention in the course of hosting Blawg Review no. 199.

The must read, as well, on the CPSIA and children’s books is Common Room’s blog.

It’s the February “District Work Period” for members of Congress. Are they holding town hall meetings? Think of the impact of a bookstore owner a public gathering holding up a box of discarded books, or a thrift store owner presenting a member with a now-verboten onesie. Powerful imagery.

Just a thought. It is certainly up to Congress to correct its excesses now. Bills have been introduced to do so, but they are coming from the minority, Republicans, and key members of the majority have been silent.

  • H.R.968 : To amend the Consumer Product Safety Act to provide regulatory relief to small and family-owned businesses. Sponsor: Rep Shadegg, John B. [AZ-3] (introduced 2/10/2009)      Cosponsors (4)
  • H.R.1027 : To exempt second-hand sellers of certain products from the lead content and certification requirements of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008. Sponsor: Rep Posey, Bill [FL-15] (introduced 2/12/2009)      Cosponsors (1)
  • H.R.1046 : To ensure the effective implementation of children’s product safety standards under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008. Sponsor: Rep Putnam, Adam H. [FL-12] (introduced 2/12/2009)      Cosponsors (1)
  • S.374 : A bill to amend the Consumer Product Safety Act to provide regulatory relief to small and family-owned businesses. Sponsor: Sen DeMint, Jim [SC] (introduced 2/4/2009)      Cosponsors (7)
  • S.389 : A bill to establish a conditional stay of the ban on lead in children’s products, and for other purposes. Sponsor: Sen Bennett, Robert F. [UT] (introduced 2/5/2009)

 

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