Criminalizing Business (published in Newsday)

Reducing the city workforce is the very best thing that Mayor Michael Bloomberg could do to help the economy [“Time to Tighten Up,” Jan. 31], not because it would reduce the city’s payroll, but because it would reduce the number of bureaucrats who have the power to prohibit peaceful economic activity.

As a New York musician who is forcibly under-employed due to bureaucratic meddling, I hope that the mayor eliminates both the bureaucrats who administer the bizarre cabaret laws that criminalize the hiring of musicians and the community-board bureaucrats who have the arbitrary power to deny restaurants and nightclubs liquor licenses if they hire musicians. I’m sure that New Yorkers in other lines of work can think of other bureaucrats we’d all be better off without.

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