For the Libertarian Perspective I wrote a
MSM space limited op-ed on professional
competition in California using as the basis
the Department of Consumer Affairs and
its licensing standards for professionals.
As everyone knows these licensing standards
are designed to stop competition from the
free market place for "licensed" professionals.
Of course with less competition "licensed"
professionals are free to charge whatever
without worrying about competitive pricing
or having to provide decent services. Or as
in the case of Texas as a really far out example
the state bar got Nolo self-help do it yourself
simple divorce and wills books banned by
getting the courts to declare the Nolo books
were practicing law without a license.
Once upon a time dentists and lawyers couldn't
advertise as it was against trade union rules.
Yes the state bar and the dental society are
trade unions or at worst guilds in the medieval
sense of the word.
In the op-ed I used a real world example of a
general contractor hired to do a re-build of
a fire damaged home. The situation was far
worse than depicted in the op-ed because of
space limitations. The actual situation was really
Why Is Competition Unfair?
California's Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA)
has as part of its mission statement "protecting licensees
from unfair competition."
The DCA comprises 40 bureaus, programs, boards,
committees, and commissions totaling 2,700 employees
and a budget of $468 million, covering 255 professions
and 2.4 million licensees.
The DCA's bureaus and boards budgets pay for
themselves by charging fees from licensees. This
income frees taxpayers from ponying up money
to protect licensees from "unfair competition."
Only consumers who use the licensees indirectly
pay the licensing fee; not all taxpayers do.
DCA licensing requirements are designed with
industry and political input. These laws, along
with a plethora of local business licenses and
permits, put speed bumps in the way of skilled
people offering their services to consumers,
thereby reducing competition and increasing prices.
for the rest of the article go to:
Ron Getty - SF Libertarian
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