Anyone who’s savvy on building issues knows that a brisk trade in second-hand toilets has developed in recent years, simply because new toilets, built in accordance with federal water conservation standards, do not flush very well. The knowledgeable consumer avoids purchasing a new conventional toilet, and either buys a premium imported model or seeks out an older model from a junk yard or plumbing shop.
Low-flush toilets made national news recently when it was revealed that they caused the San Francisco sewer system to block up, winding up costing that city $114 million dollars for repairs, upgrades, and added chemicals. There is federally-mandated economy and conservation in action for you.
Senator Rand Paul brought up this problem and the broader issue of consumer choice in a Senate hearing in which Kathleen Hogan, the deputy assistant secretary for energy efficiency at the Department of Energy, was testifying.
ABC News’ Matthew Jaffe did not even try to conceal his ideological biases in reporting on the exchange between Senator Paul and Deputy Secretary Hogan. His news report opens with a feigned air of gaping astonishment that a US senator would even consider discussing such a subject. Senator Paul’s rather intelligent remarks are dismissed from the get-go as a “tirade.” Kathleen Hogan is not a high-level bureaucrat presiding over an empire of regulation reaching aggressively into such intimate aspects of Americans’ lives as their bathroom appliances. She is an “unwitting victim.”