I forget what the topic was, but involved mandates, and the OP asked, “do you think government mandates are always a bad thing?” To which I replied, generally, yes. The most obvious case from my recent dealings involve licensing, which in Florida, is a big deal. Licensing is required for pretty much everything, it seems down here, and I suppose there are good reasons for that. People who are licensed are held to a standard, and pay fees to do business as licensed professionals, from hair weaving to just about anything else. It’s a level of accountability. In a sense, that is a form of a mandate, and while some of it seems silly, like hair-weaving, in the majority of the cases, I understand the reasons for them. So, no, not all mandates are a bad thing.
Now, I recently got myself in a little bit of trouble, by noticing that a member of a facebook group I was added to had a picture of the local greyhound track as her facebook cover image, and checking out her profile, posted a picture on a public event that she apparently was organising. They were planning on protesting at the greyhound track, and I happened to have taken a picture of some guys bagging up a dead greyhound from the track, and a few comments regarding what I understood of the status of the proposed decoupling issue, which, if I understand correctly, the track owner is in favour of. Well, anyway, the folks who raise greyhounds pretty much bullied that public event page out of existence, taking my long established username with it. Okay, well, whatever. If you want to be a butthead about things, that’s your prerogative. I wasn’t really planning on attending the event, and the event page disappeared. I was driving by the area on the day the protest was supposed to be held, but didn’t see any sign of it, so I guess they did a good job of shutting it down.
But, all of that unnecessary drama aside, the reason I brought that up has to do with a mandate: That the track must run so many races per year, by law, in order to keep their gambling license. As I mentioned, it seems to me that the track owner is sincere in wanting to switch over to more profitable endeavors, like slot machines, or something, but he is mandated by law to run a certain number of greyhound races per year. See, in that case, I think mandates are kind of stupid. I’m no fan of gambling, but I’m not asking that it be criminalised, and that includes greyhound racing, as distasteful as I find witnessing the injuries the dogs sustain for human entertainment. My focus here is on mandates.
Now the other issue that I, at least, am somewhat conscious of, is that gambling and licensing generates tax revenue. And, so, well, let’s just say that I’m aware that there are competing interests involved here, even if I’m not quite sure who they all are, but I can sort of guess. I’m not a huge advocate for this or that. I’m just an observer writing about what I see, and how it makes me feel. And I probably never would’ve brought it up if a bunch of people on facebook didn’t decide to target me by reporting me to facebook for posting nudity, when all’s I did is post a picture of a couple guys bagging up a dead greyhound from the track.