for the second amendment. “A man who broke into a house in Portland, Oregon, called police — afraid the homeowner may have a gun.Granted, this doofus sounds like he would have had trouble making his way out of a paper bag. Even so, I contend that an armed society could be a polite society.

I also saw an interesting article today in the Journal about Food Cart permits in New York. Similar to the competitive market for taxicab medallions, there has been a surge in value for food carts. Though the cost is only $200 to the city every year, “[some] permits fetch as much as $20,000 for two years, vendors say. In the case of Ms. Sultana, the hot-dog vendor, she says the permit holder told her someone else was willing to pay $15,000 for the permit she previously paid $7,000 for two years ago.”
The city’s competitive street food culture has created a thriving black market for mobile food vending permits issued by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. The city charges a mere $200 for most food-cart permits, which must be paid every two years when they are renewed. But it only issues 3,100 year-round permits plus an additional 1,000 seasonal permits—not enough to satisfy demand. Transferring or renting these permits to another vendor is illegal but everyone, including the city’s Health Department, acknowledges, that it happens.

Two years ago, the city’s Department of Investigation did an undercover probe of improper permit transfers, which led to six arrests. The department recommended, among other things, that the Health Department move to a competitive sealed-bidding process to help “eliminate the criminal conduct found in the investigation.”

It is interesting to see the lengths people will go when government perverts the market.

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