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“We have to regulate every aspect of people’s lives.”

That admission came recently from Councilman Jesse Dominguez during a meeting of the Santa Barbara City Council regarding the criminalization of the use of plastic straws.

While no one wants old plastic straws cluttering up streets, waste dumps or oceans, Dominguez moved far beyond the usual solutions, advocating for criminal penalties.

“Unfortunately, common sense is just not common,” he said. “We have to regulate every aspect of people’s lives.”

PJMedia commented: “Got that? ‘We’ are smarter than you and know what’s best for you better than you do.”

The website reported Dominguez tried to walk back his gaffe.

“I just wanted to apologize,” he said. “A few weeks ago I made a string of words in a rhetorical fashion about regulation and they were not taken as rhetorical and that’s my fault so I want to apologize.”

Rick Moran at PJMedia responded: “A ‘string of words in a rhetorical fashion’? Try again, kid.”

At Powerline blog, Steve Hayward added: “Now, we do have to admit that the good councilman has a point about Santa Barbara citizens lacking common sense. He’s on the city council, after all. Sort of an inversion of the great rhetorical question both Thomas Jefferson and Ronald Reagan liked to ask: ‘Sometimes it is said that man can not be trusted with the government of himself. Can he, then, be trusted with the government of others?’

“But ‘string of words’? I know of a new editorial board member at the New York Times who will buy that, but otherwise I think everyone can understand exactly what the councilman believes. That ‘string of words’ combines into a noose for individual liberty. And common sense. Here’s to hoping the voters of Santa Barbara recover their common sense and pull the string on Dominguez (and his ‘words’) at the next election, along with the other five knuckleheads who voted for the plastic straw ban.”

PJMedia’s Moran said the “essence of all politics is power” and the “essence of power is control.”

“Who do we want exercising power/control over our daily affairs? In our republic, it is the individual who should be free to exercise control over his daily life as long as that control or exercise thereof does no harm to anyone else. That is the essence of individual liberty and has made America an exceptional nation among nations.”

However, Moran said that while there’s been a battle between liberty and control  for decades, lately, “individual liberty has been getting squeezed by a cadre of statists who believe they have been born with the right to tell everyone else what to do and how to live their lives.”

“To enforce this belief, they have hijacked the enormous power of the state, nibbling away at individual rights in the name of ‘community.'”

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