You may not have been watching, unless you live in a rural area, but the farmers of the United States just won a small victory with the U.S. Labor Department. Whether this is a harbinger of sanity arriving in heavy industry or not, it is hard to say, but we'll take any sign of sanity as a good sign.
Last fall, the Labor Department had proposed an 85 page set of rules governing children working on family farms. Among other cute things in these regulations was a provision prohibiting children from climbing more than 10 feet off the ground (I guess we would be forced to cut all our trees?). Additionally, the 4-H Clubs farm safety program would have been replaced by a 90 hour safety course run by the Department of Labor (If you are not familiar with 4-H, it is an organization of rural clubs, much like scouting, that has local chapters for children ages 10-18 years. It is operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture).
Last week, the Labor Department withdrew its proposal to update current child labor laws in agriculture.
After years of seeing regulation piled on top of regulation, we'll take a victory for sanity, regardless of the source.