Monday, December 17, 2012
Nanny State Empowered to Regulate Hemingway's Cats
The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a decision allowing the Department of Agriculture to regulate how the Hemingway Museum treats the descendants of Hemingway's cats that live on the property. In so doing, the Court concluded that the Museum met the definition of an an animal exhibitor and that agency regulations and advertisements featuring the cats were enough to provide the necessary nexus to interstate commerce. Now, the DOA can force the Hemingway Museum to cage the cats individually at night, to construct a higher electrified fence or to hire a night watchman, and to build additional cat resting areas. As with coin collecting, even if the Government has the right to regulate something, one can still question its stupidity in doing so. Perhaps the Supreme Court might consider taking both the Hemingway cat case and ACCG coin case. Each would present a good opportunity for the Court to consider Government overreach at its most ridiculous.