And At Eighth Level, They Get +2 To Hit Rent-Seekers

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26 Responses

  1. Imaginary Lawyer says:

    I must have slept a little late today. It appears that "Nanny State" has stopped meaning instances where the government is overprotective and uses regulations to treat people like they're four years old, and has now expanded to encompass any regulation at all.

  2. Ken says:

    Maybe Regulatory State would have been a better term there. Although part of the Nanny State is passing regulations ostensibly for our protection that actually aren't about our protection.

  3. Patrick says:

    Who will protect us from unlicensed, uncertified coffins, if not the nanny state?

  4. Grandy says:

    After all, in a country where you hear about a story a month about funeral homes mistreating or abandoning bodies, it doesn’t really seem that funereal regulation does a great job of protecting the public from abuse — even if it does a pretty good job of protecting them from craftsman monks.

    But the solution here is obviously better regulation.

    The italics are "scare" italics, something I just invented.

  5. Rich says:

    I have always wanted to be a Brain Surgeon. That whole diploma intern experiance thing has been holding me back Plus a basic understanding of the use of grammer. Hey I have a right to practice medicine thought like everyone else should. God darnit. I have never wanted to be a lawyer though Commen sense would get in the way.
    Taking a extreme example like these monks.Who should be given a little leeway. Using it to justify letting people get home embalming kits and Lego Coffins does not show much Commen sense does it.

  6. Base of the Pillar says:

    Where else to hide all of the quivering palm victims?

  7. Base of the Pillar says:

    And I think Grandy broke teh intraweb fontificator.

  8. Patrick says:


  9. Charles says:


    Move along. Nothing to see here.

    You aren't taping me, are you? MOTHERF…

  10. Grandy says:

    I really don't know what the hell you are talking about. I apparently botched the closing italics tag on my post initially.

  11. Ken says:


    The better analogy would be if the state required you to study to be a brain surgeon in order to sell scalpels and drills used in brain surgery.

  12. aczarnowski says:

    Say it with me boys and girls, Regulatory Capture.

  13. David says:

    Doesn't surprise me that this is Louisiana. The license florists. Lord knows what could happen if unlicensed florists were allowed to make unharmonious bouquets.

  14. Imaginary Lawyer says:

    Patrick, presumably the same companies with an interest in preserving this regulation would just have to use the power of the marketplace rather than going through the state. You know, engaging in unethical business practices that aren't actually illegal, on the assumption that they won't ever get sued or that if they do, it'll be worth it.

  15. Dwight Brown says:

    "….it’s damned inconvenient to buy your caskets in those giant five-packs"

    With a little bit of work, though, they're very handy around the house or apartment. Coffee tables, bookshelves, wine storage…your average casket has 1,001 uses.

    1,002 I guess, if you count the intended purpose.

  16. Grandy says:

    Patrick, presumably the same companies with an interest in preserving this regulation would just have to use the power of the marketplace rather than going through the state. You know, engaging in unethical business practices that aren’t actually illegal, on the assumption that they won’t ever get sued or that if they do, it’ll be worth it.

    What practices? How will those practices hurt the Monks or Consumers (or both)? And how is the existing regulation protecting us from those practices?

  17. Patrick says:

    I didn't see your comment, Imaginary Lawyer, until Grandy highlighted it for me, but I agree with his questions. What the hell are you talking about?

    Do you believe that heavy casket regulation prevents cemetery owners, including the US government at Arlington, from dumping the wrong bodies into the wrong graves? That heavier casket regulation in Georgia and Illinois, two states that regulate the mortuary professions stringently, would have stopped the two most horrendous cases of burial fraud in the past decade from occurring?

    Why should poor people have to pay five thousand dollars, which they can probably ill-afford, to grieve for their immediate ancestors and relatives? The people these monks are selling coffins to aren't the type whose grandparents bought burial insurance. I don't know whether you handle personal injury suits, but I do, and that includes death suits. The cost of a death can exceed five thousand dollars just for the box and a hole…

    which is always placed on otherwise worthless land. You DO know that one of the most lucrative uses for land that doesn't "perk," which is often impossible to sell, in states like Louisiana where many people use well water, is a cemetery…

    Not to mention the church and the priest and the food and the medical bills that preceded the death?

    200 years ago, many inhabitants of this country would place their honored dead in a tree, where the birds would gently remove them from the world and return them to earth in their own way. Now that's illegal, even for Indians.

    When I die, I hope that my friends and family will erect a pyre of cheap wood (cost $50) and immolate my corpse with gasoline (cost $20), paying for the ceremony from the cash in my wallet. I'll be just as dead as if they'd put me into a box made of mahogany and brass fittings, and they'll be just as happy to have me out of the way.

  18. Grandy says:

    Patrick, re: your preferred method of passing on from this world to the next one, you left out "and then they all get roaring drunk and share their pain and good memories". At least, that's what I would prefer people to do but I expect you'll be similarly inclined. For me, the sharing of the good memories is important, because scientists currently project I'm not going to leave many.

    Outside of that, I would add that I wouldn't mind being burned in one of those coffins the Monks of La made.

  19. Imaginary Lawyer says:

    Patrick, what the hell are you talking about? My comment was that this regulation is obviously motivated by an industry trying to crush smaller, less financially exploitative competitors. Regulations are simply one tool for accomplishing this goal. In the absence of such regulations, they'd just make do by acting through the market rather than the government.

    You seem to have interpreted this as support for the regulations. It isn't.

  20. Patrick says:

    Your sarcasm didn't show IL. It's a weakness of the medium.

    As you were.

  21. The Californian says:

    Patrick, your pyre will run you a bit more than $70 when you add in the municipal and state burn permits, compensation for fire marshal supervision, any mandatory pre-burn brush clearance, safety equipment, warning signage…

  22. Gordon says:

    Can I get a coffin filled with Chimay Red. ummhh… beer

  23. Scott Jacobs says:

    …Environmental Impact Study, Appeal for the refusal of Permit due to the presence of some rare cockroach of some-such nearby…

  24. Kit Kittrell says:

    The funeral industry has long been prepared for retail competition in casket sales. They shift their markup to the non-negotiable service charge and lower the casket prices to undercut the third-party retailer. As in home-schooling and home-birthing, the consumer must disconnect form the industry and take matters into their own hands. Cut out the $7,000 funeral bill and do it yourself.

  25. VMS says:

    How can Costco sell caskets under these regulations?

  1. August 21, 2010

    […] Casket-making monks vs. Louisiana funeral regulators [Ken at Popehat] […]