The Gas Can

How government wrecked it:

I’m pretty alert to such problems these days. Soap doesn’t work. Toilets don’t flush. Clothes washers don’t clean. Light bulbs don’t illuminate. Refrigerators break too soon. Paint discolors. Lawnmowers have to be hacked. It’s all caused by idiotic government regulations that are wrecking our lives one consumer product at a time, all in ways we hardly notice.

It’s like the barbarian invasions that wrecked Rome, taking away the gains we’ve made in bettering our lives. It’s the bureaucrats’ way of reminding market producers and consumers who is in charge.

At some point, in ways large and small, people will revolt.

22 thoughts on “The Gas Can

  1. Curt Thomson

    Clothes washers don’t clean.
    And clothes dryers don’t dry. Because of regs stipulating functions for the purpose of lowering energy/water use. The result of course is higher energy/water use when users just run the things multiple times to get the job done.

    I’m sure our comrade usual suspects just tut-tut over it all; the jackasses MEANT well when they created the regs after all. “Why don’t you troglodytes jut get wth the program. And shut up.”

    1. Daver

      Our old washing machine took 20 minutes to clean the clothes. Our new washing machine takes 80 minutes to not clean the clothes, which our new dryer takes 90 minutes to not dry. Yay. I’m not looking forward to a new dishwasher.

      1. Fenster314

        Take it from me, the new dishwasher will take twice as long, last half as long and the dishes will be wet when it’s done. It’s going to be a sad day when my 20 year old Maytag washer/dryer finally dies.

        What’s funny is that you have to discover these things for yourself. The consumer reports comrades are down with reducing the proles standard of living for the greater good of the state.

        1. Daver

          Consumer’s Reports did note that all but the high end washing machines now do a poor job of washing, and that a decade back even the budget machines did a good job (good enough that they had to go to secondary features to determine a ranking).

          1. Rand Simberg Post author

            I think the washing machine problems are less a design issue and more a lack of phosphates in the detergents. Which you can fix by adding some TSP to the load.

          2. Daver

            I wonder if someone has done side-by-side tests. I wouldn’t be surprised if the current washers were designed to use phosphate detergents–they might be marginally effective with phosphates. Even so, they just don’t use that much water and I have a hard time imagining how they’d get rural amounts of dirt out of clothes.

            My wife doesn’t appreciate the time it takes to untie the clothes after the washer finishes with them–that’s also something that CU didn’t seem to account for in their tests.

          3. Der Schtumpy

            Daver,
            I live and work in a rural setting. Our 10 year old washer has a ‘HEAVY’ setting. That is where I wash all my yard work / goat barn clothes / overalls.

            I know that no other setting on our machine will clean my clothes.

            That setting runs about 50% longer and actually agitates slower. It also has several ‘breaks’ in the cycle where the clothes just rest in the soapy water. We’ve looked at some newer models and the more expensive models have that same type of setting.

            You can buy appliances that work like the old ones did. BUT, you’ll pay for the privilege. And how is that different than anything else the Prog / Lib idiots get their mitts on?!

  2. Larry J

    It’s the bureaucrats’ way of reminding market producers and consumers who is in charge.

    A gas can without a vent? Even a first grader can show how stupid that is. But then, if the bureaucrats had any math or science skills, they could’ve had a real job instead of being a parasite on society.

  3. Sigivald

    It’s the bureaucrats’ way of reminding market producers and consumers who is in charge.

    Worse.

    It’s bureaucrats who Think They’re Doing Active Good, listening to idiot hippies and ruining things.

    As IIRC Lewis said, that’s even worse than someone exercising power for its own sake – they might get tired of that. But “Saving the Planet”? That will give them good feelings forever, as long as they keep “saving it” from Us.

  4. Name (required)

    I noticed the same thing about the gas cans. This is the most horrible thing I can think of. Over the last decade, without paying attention, we’ve drifted toward 3rd world living. And even with people complaining about it, there’s no amount of money that can legally prevent you from having a stupid afternoon slopping gas all over your lawnmower. It’s like Harrison Bergeron.

  5. Bart

    Gas cans today are absolutely ridiculous. I just bought a new one the other day, which has a little sleeve on the spout that has to be pushed in to let the gas out. Of course, there is no way to push it in on the tank outlet without it continually slipping closed, causing spillage. So, I have to hold it open, which of course means I end up slopping gas all over my hands and on the ground. As soon as I get a chance, I will remove the device.

    There are dozens of other such inconveniences in modern tools I have to find a way to circumvent. And, it just keeps getting worse.

  6. Raoul Ortega

    The people who demand that gov’t stay out of the bedroom have no problem with massive gov’t intrusion in every other aspect of our lives.

    Except in their abortionist’s surgery. That’s another one of their sacred spaces.

    Here in Colorado, it turns out that marijuana legalization also brings with it regulations and taxation and all the other “benefits” of gov’t. Betcha the hemp-heads never considered that when they circulated those initiative petitions.

  7. Raoul Ortega

    The people who demand that gov’t stay out of the bedroom have no problem with massive gov’t intrusion in every other aspect of our lives.

    Except in their abortionist’s surgery. That’s another one of their sacred spaces.

    Here in Colorado, it turns out that marijuana legalization also brings with it regulations and taxation and all the other “benefits” of gov’t. Betcha the hemp-heads never considered that when they circulated those initiative petitions.

  8. Ed Minchau

    The wisdom or shortsightedness of any individual regulation becomes irrelevant over time. The sheer number of existing regulations, and new regulations every year, each become a drain on time and resources to the point where compliance with each additional regulation, wise or not, has a net negative effect on the economy and quality of life.

    No bureaucrat is wise enough or has access to enough information to write a regulation covering 330 million people without exception. 330 million individuals (or tens of millions of families) with access to enough information to make their own decisions do far better.

  9. Arizona CJ

    New dishwasher?

    Even people with an old one have likely noticed that, starting two or three years ago, their dishes aren’t getting clean.

    The reason is the detergent.

    Various state regulations, driven by the envirowhackos, banned the use of phosphates in dishwashing detergent. As a result, the manufacturers removed it from products (to avoid having to make separate versions). The new “phosphate free” dishwashing detergent lacks the cleaning power of the old stuff. (the same is true of “phosphate free” laundry detergent, or any cleaning supply).

    Fortunately, the answer is simple; put it back! Just add your own phosphate to your detergent. You can get it at the hardware store, in the painting section; trisodium phosphate. (it’s cheap, too). I find half a heaped teaspoon of it per dishwasher load makes my new dishwasher as good as the old one I had prior to the detergent change. The difference is massive.

    I just noticed that Rand has already commented on this; the TSP he mentions is Trisodium Phosphate.

    Another hate of mine is low-flow fixtures, such as faucets and toilets. I despise them for most purposes. Fortunately, there are some facuets that you can drill out to make non-low-flow, or just do as I do and buy non-low-flow overseas. (I’ve used both methods… but be advised, you make have to make adapters for the metric sizes on the forign stuff).

    For toilets, it’s simple; I use non low flow ones. I find them much superior to the low flow ones. There are several ways to acquire these, such as buying used ones from someone doing a remodel, to bringing in Canadian ones (be very careful to do your research first if you do the latter). Ebay is reportedly another good source. In many jurisdictions it’s not legal to replace a low flow with a non low flow, so do the install yourself and lose the paperwork (And don’t do it before getting an occupancy permit for a new home! Do it after.) .

    Washing machines? Buy a good used one and refurbish it. The new ones, from what I hear, are rubbish. You’ll also save money by doing this.

    It is absolutely reprehensible that this never-ending plague of growing regulations is forcing people to choose between breaking the law and putting up with clunky garbage that doesn’t do the job.

    1. Ed Minchau

      “It is absolutely reprehensible that this never-ending plague of growing regulations is forcing people to choose between breaking the law and putting up with clunky garbage that doesn’t do the job.”

      Its sorta the whole point – they need everyone to be criminals. That way, if someone does something like making a video the administration finds embarrassing, they can send in brownshirts in the middle of the night to arrest him.

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