simplicity & policy Friday, 12. November 2010

This one might be rant-y. Sorry in advance.

I've been thinking a lot about numbers, laws and policy lately. At last, I've dug up some:

Also, austrian legal texts. just wc -w, nothing fancy.

Just to read these three an average person would take a year. To understand them? No idea, I didn't check for legalese. To understand agencies' internal enforcement policies? Hardly possible.

There is this story claiming Maria Theresa — one of Austria's better known 17th century rulers — required policy changes to be read to a buta ember (hungarian for "dumb person"; a person with average education), and for policies to be rejected if that person did not grasp them.

For ages, we've been building and enhancing laws. Hell, the Austrian civil code was first announced in 1811.

Maybe now it's time to reduce and simplify them.

Also on this: