Sunday, April 18, 2004

The Nanny State(s)

Thinking about relocating to another state? The internet is your friend. Go to to see what job prospects are like. There is even a link to help arrivals get licensed in order to practice in various professions.

It is possible to search by state or by occupation. I only looked at California's long list which includes barbers, manicurists, matchmakers -- and matchmakers' assistants. Each state of the union showcases its own peculiar nuttiness.

Licensing is often defended as a way for consumers to cut search costs. Or, elites like to remind us, most people are not equipped to make good choices.

These arguments are trumped by the actual lists of occupations with barriers. There is a demand for licensing but it comes from those eager to limit the competition -- and their political enablers.