Mr. Doug Benton was arrested yesterday after being caught in a police sting investigation aimed at catching people who attempt to produce goods and services without permission. The inter-agency effort to catch Mr. Benton was composed of law enforcement officers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Justice, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Labor, the Department of State, Child Protective Services, the State Police, the County Sheriff, and the City Police.
Mr. Benton is accused of home brewing beer made from ingredients grown in his small greenhouse and selling it at a make-shift kiosk located on his front lawn. As a result of this, Mr. Benton has been charged with:
Failure to register business entity or sole proprietorship
Failure to obtain a Federal Tax identification number
Failure to obtain a State employer identification number
Failure to obtain a State/local sales tax or “resale” permit
Failure to obtain a local Business license/tax
Failure to provide proof of workers’compensation insurance
Failure to obtain zoning Approval
Failure to obtain a conditional use permit or use permit
Failure to obtain a building Permit (new or remodel)
Failure to obtain water/sewer permits
Failure to obtain Americans with Disabilities Act Approvals
Failure to meet State and local health department requirements
Failure to obtain equipment permits
Failure to obtain food-service permits
Failure to obtain Fire marshal approval
Failure to obtain Police/safety inspections
Failure to obtain a Federal Brewer’s Notice
Failure to obtain a State Brewer’s License
Failure to obtain a Brewery/brewpub license
Failure to obtain an alcohol transport license
Failure to obtain a Special occupational tax (federal tax stamp)
Failure to register for a State excise tax
Failure to obtain a TTB certificate of label approval (“COLA”)
Failure to obtain a State label approval
Failure to meet keg labeling requirements
Mr. Benton is currently facing 3.56 billion dollars in fines and an estimated 334 years of federal prison time should he be convicted on all counts.
Ms. Loquisha Jones, who lives across the street from Mr. Benton, noted that she often saw Benton working all hours of the night with his 15 year old son as they labored to produce the unregulated beer that was being sold on their front lawn. Child Protective Services has taken Mr. Benton’s son into custody after it became apparent that Mr. Benton had violated numerous child labor laws.
Of course, the above story is fictional; however, the crimes listed are all to real. In America today, doing business doesn’t just require permission; it requires a law school degree and a priest.
You wonder why there are no jobs?
Look no further.
The list of crimes was taken from a web site that tries to help people start their own home breweries. Clearly it takes a massive amount of determination and money just to overcome the bureaucratic hurdles required to open a business. And of course, there is no way in hell any city council would ever allow a guy to sell beer from his front porch. Liquor licenses are like a license to print money. Unless you know someone in the system or have a lot of money, you’re going to have a hell of a time trying to get one.
I hope everyone takes a moment to consider that each of those licenses requires an army of bureaucrats to regulate and oversee each one. Each of those licenses represents hundreds of bureaucrat salaries that YOU pay for.