Friday, December 4, 2009

rogue hypnotists foiled

Back when I was working for the Indiana General Assembly, one member (and not the member who was, no lie, a radio psychic) became convinced that it was crucially important for the state to address, via statute, the problem of rogue hypnotists travelling the land, preying upon unsuspecting Hoosiers. He wasn’t anti-hypnotist, mind you–he thought the government needed to protect people from unqualified hypnotists. If you ask me, real hypnotists are the ones we should be worried about (You want…to give me…your credit card…information…) but then I’m not a duly-elected public servant.

So the state passed a hypnotist licensing law, complete with the requisite boards, professional standards, forms to fill out, fees to pay, and so on...

Then, after the law was enacted, a funny thing started happening: The state began receiving license applications from people who didn’t live in Indiana. People who lived in states (i.e. most states) that didn’t require hypnotist licensing of any kind. Some were from as far away as California. It turns out they were doing it so they could advertise in the yellow pages and on bus-stop billboards as “state-licensed.” They would just neglect to mention which state.

On The Quick and the Ed, hat tip Marginal Revolution, hat tip Matthew Yglesias. (Hard to believe I have any readers who read neither MR nor MY, but could naturally not pass up the chance of a post on rogue hypnotists.)

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