Saturday, May 11, 2013

Vermont: wherein effective nullification becomes both a Green and Libertarian thing

The Vermont House has just passed a GMO labeling bill by a heavy majority:  99-42.

This basically represents a state choosing to nullify the Monsanto Protection Act [assuming the Vermont Senate also passes it and the Governor signs it] by requiring labels that the Feds have said are unnecessary and may even be illegal.

State legislatures and referenda pushing back at the Federal government used to be derided as the province of "Tenthers" and conservative extremists.

But Colorado and Washington pushed back on marijuana legalization.

Twelve states have pushed back on marriage equality.

Vermont is now pushing back on food labeling exemptions.

For Libertarians this is pretty simple, doctrinaire stuff, trying to limit Federal power.

For our Green friends, who have consistently advocated for environmental and economic policies driven from the top down this may be new territory.  "Think globally, act locally" may take on an entirely different connotation.

4 comments:

Delaware Watch said...

I love Vermont. It strikes me as being the most sensible and progressive state in the nation. Question for you, Steve. While nullification has been championed by Libertarians, wouldn't most Libertarians find a government mandated requirement to place a label on a product an unwarranted and unjustifiable state intrusion into the marketplace?

Steve Newton said...

It is difficult to speak for "most libertarians," but food labeling involves the avoidance of fraud, which is a major issue to Libertarians.

I suspect most would prefer it to be done by a private public interest group (ala the old Underwriters Laboratory), but I doubt the feasibility of that.

Food labeling is not a market intrusion (except possibly in the sense of how it is funded), because it does not limit your possible market decisions, only informs them. You can still buy whatever you want, and the seller can still sell.

mynym said...

... wouldn't most Libertarians find a government mandated requirement to place a label on a product an unwarranted and unjustifiable state intrusion into the marketplace?

May be irrelevant soon, there are already apps being developed for people to bar scan for GMOs on their phones. Another interesting app, alerts for all FEMA/DHS drills in a given area since approximately 63 drills have "gone live" (depending on how you count), etc.

mynym said...

But unfortunately decentralized movements like Anonymous and resistance to corporatism/fascism (Or the military industrial complex, as old people put it.) will probably take a while to get to the average sheeple... so, more shearing and slaughtering ahead? Probably.