Government in Action
Two stories that were displayed on inside (but prominent) pages of the newspaper and on the website strike me as classic examples of what good journalism should be doing: pointing to important examples of government failing in its responsibilities. Walter Pincus reports today that the Air Force wants to retire 85 airplanes that essentially are too old and tired to use. Congress won't let it do so. On Saturday, Annys Shin walked us through the legislative, bureaucratic and political snarl that has kept the Consumer Product Safety Commission from recalling an all-terrain vehicle it calls defective and dangerous. ATV accidents kill about 700 people a year, about a fourth of them younger than 16. There are no comments at this moment on the Pincus article, but most of those few who wrote to us about the ATV article suggested that a decision to ride these things should be the concern of individuals, especially parents, not government. Not everyone agrees.
On the ATV article, mark16 wrote, "This is a case where the product category -- the activity itself -- is intrinsicly dangerous. Unless you're going to outlaw kids from riding these things, I don't really see what you can do... Have skateboards been outlawed? Were kids never hurt riding horses?"
hobbymanbill wrote, "Most parents don't have the sense to come in out of the rain. LIFE is dangerous, the average person today is scared of everything. I don't and you shouldn't need the GOVERNMENT to tell you how to raise or protect your children..."
But diamond2 said, "This news item shows the irrelevancy of the federal government when it comes to protecting "the home front." Couple this with the water story in Georgia/Alabama/Florida and we are presented with a government that does not know what to do in emergencies which threaten people's lives."
All comments on the ATV article are here.
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