Blue states specialize in industrial strength stupid laws.
One policy is so awful out-of-state visitors have a hard time believing it’s real.
And now two states are finally considering getting rid of the dumbest law ever.
Leftists like to make the population at large as dependent as possible – and for decades now citizens in some states have been forced to pay higher taxes while waiting for a gas station employee to fill up their tank.
That’s right, it’s actually illegal to pump your own gas in some parts of the country.
Now in the middle of a labor shortage – and general societal meltdown – Oregon and New Jersey are considering making it legal for drivers to pump their own gas.
Those two are the last stragglers in the union still clinging to the ridiculous nanny state rules when it comes to fueling up.
Supposedly, the laws are intended to keep drivers from “mishandling potentially flammable gasoline.”
But the reality is it’s just one more way the government is sticking its nose into citizens’ lives – and regulating one of the safest basic routines in life.
Now labor shortages, fueled by Democrats’ handling of the pandemic, have created a situation where able-bodied drivers who need to get on with their own work in life are sitting in queues burning gas.
“When we pull into a fueling station right now, half of the pumps are closed down and they have garbage cans or cones in front of them,” Oregon state Rep. Shelly Boshart Davis told The Hill. “They don’t have enough attendants to service all of them.”
In New Jersey, the huge burden of paying for attendants is helping to push gas stations out of business – with only 2,200 still open in the state compared to 5,000 in 1978.
The industry is desperate for a way to restructure costs, but politicians don’t seem to want to let them use their own judgment.
“We survey consumers all the time. The number-one technology they want right now is self-checkout inside the store. So if they’re looking for self-checkout inside the store,” Sal Risalvato, executive director of a state industry group said. “Why wouldn’t they get self-checkout at the pump?”
Of course, Democrats can’t simply let go of a horrible idea even when it’s obvious that’s the right thing to do.
Instead, they have to make every solution almost as bad – or worse – than the problem they set out to fix.
The proposed law in New Jersey would allow drivers to get their own gas if there are fewer than four pumps at a station while stations with five or more pumps would still have to staff enough employees to pump gas for all their customers.
That’s enough to make you wonder who owns a bunch of quick stops with four or less pumps – or who is about to open a bunch.
The Oregon bill would require stations to offer both full service and self-service options.
Heaven forbid we allow the free market to determine what is and isn’t needed.
Stay tuned to Blue State Blues for any updates to this ongoing story.