Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Monks vs. The Louisiana Funeral Cartel

The Institute for Justice has teamed up with a group of monks from Saint Joseph Abbey to get Louisiana’s casket licensing law overturned. Under Louisiana law, it is a crime for anyone but a licensed funeral director to sell “funeral merchandise,” which includes caskets.

To sell caskets legally, the monks would have to abandon their calling for one full year to apprentice at a licensed funeral home, learn unnecessary skills and take a funeral industry test. They would also have to convert their monastery into a “funeral establishment” by, among other things, installing equipment for embalming human remains.

The monks face crippling fines and up to 180 days in jail. This is classic economic protectionism, and this case has a great chance of making it to the Supreme Court.

See the video above and go here for more information.


At 8/12/2010 11:19 AM, Blogger John said...

I'd like to see this make it to the Supreme Court, and see how broadly this might be applied. This is, indeed, economic protectionism, and it's beyond ridiculous.

At 8/12/2010 12:11 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

This is an interesting post.

I wonder if the "state's rights" crowd knows just how much protectionism is deeply embedded into their states and localities.

Liquor and wine distribution in the country is run by various state and local cartels, nearly.

In Calfiornia, state ag officers regulate the size of grapefruits that can be sold in the state.

Every state licenses lawyers, and you must pass a bar exam...and they can raise the bar, so to speak.

The list goes on and on. Insurance anyone?

At 8/12/2010 1:21 PM, Blogger James said...

Consider Colorado’s liquor law that says a corporation can own only one liquor store in the state. That protects the mom and pop liquor stores from competition from chain stores like Costco and grocery stores.

At 8/12/2010 6:25 PM, Blogger KauaiMark said...

"...competition from chain stores like Costco"

Interestingly Costco sells caskets here in Calif

At 8/12/2010 6:29 PM, Blogger KauaiMark said...

Wasn't it Louisiana that required flower arrangers to be licensed also?


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