Have you heard about the latest virus? It’s the most recent strain of a very old infection. The scientific name for it is Stupidus Bureaucratus OSHA.
OSHA is the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. It’s their job to make sure workers in steel plants don’t jump into vats of boiling steel and workers in offices don’t peer too closely at their monitors. Now they’re worried about postal employees, but not quite in the way you might think. So far, anthrax has killed two postal workers, and spores have been found at several facilities. It’s understandable that many workers want to take precautions, like wearing gloves and masks. But OSHA says whoa slow down there! What about proper training, people?
True story. The postal service has purchased millions of spore-filtering masks for its employees. But OSHA says, don’t dare wear them until you’ve had proper training. Proper training? I’d always thought it was a matter of stretching the rubber band and pulling the mask over your face. But even if there is a special mask-wearing protocol to follow, there’s obviously no reason for delay here.
Philip K. Howard is author of the book, The Death Of Common Sense: How Law Is Suffocating America. As Howard puts it, “using [these] masks imperfectly for a while is a whole lot better than not wearing them at all.” Mr. Howard is correct. No doubt OSHA has backed down by the time you hear this. Or, at least there have been no mass arrests of untrained postal employees. But jeez, somebody inoculate those bureaucrats and fast.
This is Common Sense.Â I’m Paul Jacob.