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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ohio Ranks Low for Personal Freedom

Posted By on Tue, Jun 21, 2011 at 9:45 AM

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Ohioans are known for their love of funnel cakes and sporting heartbreak. But a new study says we could use a double order of personal freedom, a fact which begs for a new license plate slogan: "First in Flight, Last in Freedom."

The Buckeye State ranks 42nd in the nation in terms of our civil liberties, according to a report by the folks at George Mason University, who will study anything rather than get a job.

Among our endearing weaknesses: state-authorized sobriety checkpoints, “draconian” smoking bans, high taxes on everything from cigarettes to liquor to schools, and lack (for the moment) of legal gambling opportunities.

The list goes on: Our gun-control laws are too tight, our government is too expensive, and we’re out of touch on legalizing pot. Plus, our fine hookers still don’t accept debit cards.

“Ohio performs poorly in nearly every conceptual area,” the report helpfully notes.

Our good points? Occupational licenses are easy to come by. Taxes on beer and wine aren’t so bad for those who don’t live in Cuyahoga County. Plus, no motorcycle helmet laws!

Thankfully, the authors have provided helpful tips on how to improve our sorry lot. The report concludes that Ohio should aim to be more like Indiana, which ranks third in personal freedoms despite its proximity to our roiling hotbed of Stalinism. And how should we do that? Mainly by “aggressively reducing taxes” and spending a lot less on government administration. We’re working on it, fellas. — Maude Campbell

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