Restrictive Zoning Laws Worsened the Supply Chain Crisis – Opinion

Strict zoning laws restrict the stacking of empty shipping containers after unloading, resulting in a major backlog at America’s busiest port.

It was not until officials from Long Beach (California) issued an emergency order to temporarily relax the rules that it was illegal for trucking companies to store more than two shipping containersin their yards. That’s contributed to a massive bottleneck at the terminal yards of trucking companies serving both the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach—a bottleneck that’s being felt in supply chain shortages across the whole country.

Ryan Petersen (CEO of Flexport), a logistics company, said in part in a lengthy Twitter thread that there was no room in trucking yards for empty shipping containers because of the artificial limit on how containers can be stacked.

In short, getting the two major ports to operate around-the-clock—as the White House has urged them to do—doesn’t mean much if there is nowhere for the unloaded shipping containers to go. Petersen writes, “It is a real traffic jam.”

As shipping containers can be stacked higher than usual at ports, and when being moved across the open ocean, there doesn’t seem a safety reason to enforce such policies. According to Long Beach, the ban on stacking containers higher than 2 feet is an aesthetic decision to protect neighbors’ visual views. The Maritime Executive A trade publication.

These rules will be void for the next three-months due to an emergency declaration issued on Saturday. Now, trucking companies and warehouses will be allowed to stack up to four containers vertically—effectively doubling their capacity. Long Beach officials stated in a statement that the city would work for the next 90 days to evaluate the effectiveness and impact on surrounding areas.

There you go. A national supply chain crisis threatens Christmas and is all it takes for California to temporarily get some relief from its excessive zoning regulations.

However, the restrictions on Long Beach’s zoning and the delays they caused at Long Beach port aren’t the only negative effects of government policy. The situation also demonstrates how difficult it is for the government to actually solve the supply chain issue—and not just because the head of the federal Commerce Department seems to be confusedAbout the differences between “supply” and “demand.”

Problem is, you cannot simply throw money at shipping containers to move them. Lehman…” [Brothers, the financial firm that collapsed in 2008, triggering the subprime mortgage crisis]Petersen stated that the government could simply print tons of money in order to flood banks with liquidity. Bloomberg Sunday. “Here are real-world solutions.”


Roskomnadzor Russia’s internet regulator uses “blackbox” technology to control digital media. If they don’t comply with the orders to remove offensive content, it slows down websites like YouTube and Twitter. The New York Times Reports

You might think that American politicians would be more concerned about actual censorship, given all of the online “censorship” talk. The reality is that the Times Reports:

Russia’s attempts to censor the internet have met little resistance. In the United States and Europe, once full-throated champions of an open internet, leaders have been largely silent amid deepening distrust of Silicon Valley and attempts to regulate the worst internet abuses themselves. Russian authorities have used West-based tech industry regulations to justify their own crackdown.

Michael McFaul (American ambassador to Russia under the Obama administration) said that it was striking that the issue has not been brought up by the Biden Administration. He criticised Apple, Facebook and Twitter for being less forceful against Russia’s policies.


Keep your eyes open for more high-inflation months. Janet Yellen (chair of the Federal Reserve) told CNN’s Jake Tapper that “the inflation rate would remain high into next years because of what has already occurred.” However, I anticipate improvement in the second and third quarters of next year.

For the 12 months ending September, inflation was at 5.4%. It is mostly due to rising fuel and food prices.


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• A judicial inquiry into Eric Garner’s death at the hands of a New York City police officer will begin Monday. Twelve witnesses will be available to testify, which includes cops who were involved in the case.

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• “They don’t know what it is, and we don’t know what it is.”

• A Virginia school board is suing a woman for possessing documents the school board provided to her via the Freedom of Information Act.

• Hope it was a Pokemon with powerful healing abilities, at least: