Thursday, January 30, 2020

It's Not Working for Us

The most terrifying words in the English language are: 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'

When California's Assembly Bill 5 (AB5) went into effect on January 1, many independent contractors were not even aware of it. But they quickly learned the hard facts--they were not entitled to earn their own living anymore in the state's thriving "gig economy."

Uber and Lyft drivers got the most publicity, but thousands of self-employed Californians are now required by law to report to an "employer." The vastly diverse group of independent workers includes musicians, translators, dancers, and writers. It's a perfect example of authoritarian government trampling the individual's Constitutional right to "the pursuit of happiness."

The reaction from independent workers has been swift. This week they marched on the state capitol in a "Rally to Repeal AB5." Truckers have already received an injunction from a federal judge. State Senator Brian Jones has injected another ray of hope with the introduction of a "Right to Earn a Living Act" with the goal of overturning this atrocious law. 

Yes, you read that right. California now needs a law to protect a person's right to earn a living. As Vladimir Lenin so aptly noted, "the goal of socialism is communism." California is veering uncomfortably close to such extreme ideology with the implementation of AB5.

As is true of most leftists, California's politicians will keep pushing big government takeovers of the private sector until forcibly stopped. Let's hope the creative and successful self-employed contractors, entrepreneurs, and freelancers of California can stand firm and see the repeal of AB5 through to completion.

We're Americans, raised to believe that we live in a "free country." If that concept remains true, we should still have the right to tell our government, "No."