Why Wealthier is Healthier and Regulation Kills

Yesterday I mentioned to Barry that the trick-or-treaters would probably start arriving today at about 3 p.m., due to a rash of “safety” stories from the media.

Then as we made dinner together, listening to the local radio station, the evening DJ signed off by saying, “Be safe this Halloween… above all, be safe!”

(Judging by the weather forecast, he would have been more helpful by saying, “Stay dry!”)

But the radio station, like many TV shows, is into fear mongering in the guise of being helpful…

Then, as we switched on the TV for some dinner-time entertainment and conversation, we landed on one of our favorite common-sense commentators’ shows: Stossel.

Host John Stossel has worked in the media for a long time, so he understands how it works. I used to like watching him on 20/20, but his own show is even better.

The episode we landed on was about, “coincidentally” (or not), Media Scare Stories.

As we tuned it in, Stossel was showing us a little girl who was NOT safe on Halloween… she found a needle in one of her mini Snickers bars.

Scary, yes — especially if it happens to your child.

And of course the local TV station will cover it. It’s unusual, which makes it newsworthy, and it’s a public service to remind parents to supervise Halloween activities.

But the very reason it’s newsworthy — that it’s VERY rare — is exactly why it’s not something you need to FOCUS on or be paranoid about.

After all, if you like simplistic little sound bites, remember what many personal development teachers say: “What you focus on expands.”

You can read Stossel’s synopsis of the whole story on his blog post here; but these are my thoughts on it (with some additional research), as a former mainstream media host and anchor myself:

The media loves to cover stories of “bad” things that happen, for the reasons I outlined above.

But they fail to acknowledge publicly that what they’re covering is really only being covered because it’s so rare.

By covering a plane crash, and implying it could happen to you, they cause many people to decide just to drive where they’re going… but according to the National Transportation Safety Board, highway fatalities account for over 94% of transportation deaths.

Over 100 people die each year in plane crashes, but over 100 people die each DAY in car crashes.

So since driving kills many, many more people than flying, the media is actually putting people in danger by covering the plane crash the way they do.

Even more thought-provoking than that, Stossel points out that poverty is, in fact, far more dangerous than any of these things.


Well, think about it: “Poor people drive older cars with older tires… they buy less fresh fruit… etc. Wealthier… is healthier,” Stossel explains.

Let’s follow his argument one step further, and we’ll see that media scare tactics stop entrepreneurs (like us, and maybe you) from operating to their full potential.

“And so when Americans spend time and money obsessing about small stuff like plane crashes and even terrorism, we kill people. The obsessing quickly becomes political activism, which leads to more regulation and rules that make it harder to open a business, or to run a business. When businesses don’t open, or are regulated to death, America is a little poorer,” Stossel says.

And that brings me to a video Barry found the other day, which perfectly illustrates and wraps up this whole argument:

Wow! Sounds crazy, doesn’t it?

Maybe even scary? Well… Happy Halloween! Boo!

And if you want to start your own business so you can be wealthier, and therefore healthier, happy hunting for one that works in your area.

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Filed under: Common Sense, Critical-Thinking, Videos

4 Responses to “Why Wealthier is Healthier and Regulation Kills”

  1. That IS crazy stuff in that video! I’m almost tempted to ask if you’re joking!

    About the Forex trading, the hard thing seems to be to come up with the start-up funds. Now, THAT’s REALLY scary, ain’t it?


    [ Barrys Reply ] — We didn’t construct the content of the video, Mark. So, while we’d love to say we ARE indeed joking, we (and the organization that created it), er, aren’t! In regards to your personal revelation that you feel you’re investment-capital poor, that is indeed certainly scary shit.

    Let’s just hope some of our blog posts will help you get out of that kind of situation.

    Hey, I have an idea: read “How To Shake Off Income Worries”:

  2. What a great article. The video is priceless!

    Politicians, conservative and liberal, are guilty of these kinds of restrictions on us. Like frogs in slow boiling water, we just float in gentle comfort until it’s too late. This is a great wake-up call!

    Maybe it’s really time to activate with our voices and our votes. First, to let local, state and national representatives know that we are sick and tired of these layers of restrictions of freedom being imposed on us. That they not only STOP doing it but that they also start rescinding these scars against our freedom.

    [Heather’s Reply]:

    Thanks for the comment, Tom… time for us to stop being frogs! 😉

    It would be nice to think that elections are actually, truly, democratic processes. Even if they are, though, the challenge is wading through each candidate’s platform and trying to forecast how they might address issues like these. I understand how people end up feeling it’s just hopeless to try to make the right decision.

    I can’t vote here anyway, being a Canadian citizen.

    But I’m glad that in this day and age we all have personal “media” outlets, such as blogs like these, where we can publish our thoughts, feelings, and frustrations around the ridiculousness of it all! 😉
    Tom Justin´s last blog post ..3 Steps To Take Total Control Of Your Life

  3. It’s interesting how everything it’s conected to the conclusion that poverty it’s more dangerous than smoking, crashing airplanes, fires, etc.. maybe it’s not poverty itself, my take it’s that is the mental attitude (or program) to be poor impressed in peoples minds nowdays.

    Well that’s my shot.

    Thanks for the info.

  4. It seems to me that there is a balance needed between too much regulation and not enough. If a food vendor causes illness (and death), we want to know why the inspectors weren’t taking care of the public’s interest in being able to eat without fear of getting sick. Those inspections come from fees paid by the vendor.

    On the other hand, I think a case can be made for too many licenses and regulations. Where does the balance lie?

    I am a one-person business working out of my home and fortunately live in an unincorporated area of the county and don’t have to pay a business tax. When I sell a product, however, I do need to pay state tax. I would, of course, prefer not paying ANY taxes.

    However, I also prefer having schools funded so the next generation can learn how to get our state out of the mess into which we’ve grown. And that mess is, in large part, caused by the taxpayers’ desire for services for which it doesn’t want to pay.

    [ Barry’s Comment ] – Arlene, before you go around worrying and/or propogating the unecessary idea that our future generartion NEEEDS “public schools,” to learn, you should consider readng a few things:

    #1) The 40+ comments on our Institutionalized Thinking Via Education post.

    #2) And, a quick comment made by another intrepid thinker-writer, Porter Stansberry. One of his readers brought up the idea that he shouldn’t pass on his own wealth to his own children…er… for the “greater good” of society and for the benefit of educating MORE children than his.

    His reply:

    “Mary Ellen… If you think the government running our schools is a good thing for our country, I’m afraid we shouldn’t even bother with this discussion. But just to humor my other subscribers, I’d like to point out that with YouTube and a library card, anyone with a little motivation can get a Harvard-quality education for free. There’s a big difference between going to school and learning. Some kids and their parents have figured this out already. Vastly more people will over the next decade. And by the time I die, the entire public school system will have disappeared (thankfully).”

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