This is what they say in California; big screen TV’s are bad for the environment. Of course they are; how could something that people across all political and socioeconomic spectrums love so much not be bad for something? Then again we are talking about California. Banning flat screen TV’s is just the next logical step for a state that has been out of regulatory control for a long, long time.

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California regulators are trying to pass the first ban on flat screen TV’s; they say the televisions are energy consuming monsters that need the long arm of state government to regulate which ones you can buy and have in your home. It’s for the good of the planet after all.

The California Energy Commission have been asked by the Consumer Electronics Association to allow the free market to decide which flat screen TV’s will survive. The CEA feels that consumers will and already are purchasing the more environmentally friendly as well as the more energy efficient models.

Of course that isn’t good enough for the California Energy Commission who feel that only they in their infinite wisdom could make that kind of important choice necessary to save the planet. From the LA Times:

“Voluntary efforts are succeeding without regulations,” said Doug Johnson, the association’s senior director for technology policy. Too much government interference could hamstring industry innovation and prove expensive to manufacturers and consumers, he warned.

But Mr. Johnson, if you did that, you would essentially be allowing capitalism to dictate environmental policy; we can’t have that now can we? A vote on the matter could come in a matter of weeks. The proposed energy standard changes would be phased in over two years starting in January 2011.

The California Energy Commission for their part say that they would in no way impose regulations if they thought it might hinder the growth of the TV industry. Yeah, government always takes into account how their imposed regulations affect an industry. Just ask the auto industry.

Let me leave you with this question. What is it with California? Banning flat screen TV’s is no surprise coming from the state that invented burdensome government regulations. But TV’s? Is nothing sacred anymore?