Today in the Wall Street Journal, a historian recounts an old warning:
'In "The Federalist Papers," No. 62, James Madison warned his readers against drawing up laws that were unnecessarily dense or complicated: "It will be of little avail to the people…if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood."'
And then she jumps forward a couple of centuries:
In 1982, the U.S. Justice Department attempted to count the total number of criminal laws. Two years and 3,000 offenses later, the effort was abandoned as hopeless. To this day, nobody knows how many federal laws are on the books.
An excess of laws
deserves no applause.