Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Daily Digest: Nanny State Watch

Do we really need a surgeon general? We do not, argues Cato's Michael Tanner, for "nowadays the surgeon general is little more than the 'national nanny,' nagging us to stop smoking, lose weight, and never leave home without a condom."

Speaking of the nanny state, a town in Louisiana is about to outlaw sagging pants. Penalties include up to six months in jail. Why don't they just outlaw puberty?

IBD rehashes the case for making English the official language of the United States, which would require all government meetings, publications and transactions to be done in English, with common-sense exceptions such as in health care and judicial proceedings.

Anne Applebaum observes the difference between Obama's first book—Dreams from My Father—and his second, The Audacity of Hope: Dreams was written 15 years ago, before Obama became a political candidate of any kind, whereas Audacity is his recent "elect-me-president" book. The result: the former is "written with real elegance" and "full of unexpected observations," while the latter is cliched-cloaked and platitude-puffed.