Pennsylvania Flunks SATs

The Philadelphia Inquirer: Pennsylvania Takes on Online Auctions. Mary Jo Pletz was really, really good at eBay. But now the former stay-at-home mother and gonzo Internet retailer fears a maximum $10 million fine for selling 10,000 toys, antiques, videos, sports memorabilia, books, tools and infant clothes on eBay without an auctioneer’s license.

Why is Pennsylvania seeking to compel eBay sellers to obtain an auctioneer license? Aren’t there any college graduates running the bureaucracy? After all, a basic SAT question would be Pletz:eBay::

  1. Cheney:Bush
  2. Leona Helmsley:Christie’s
  3. Auctioneer:Seller
  4. Dogs:Cats
  5. Chicken:Egg

And the Commonwealth flunked this question. Pletz isn’t the auctioneer. eBay is the auctioneer. Just like when the Estate of Leona Helmsley unloaded her property, Christie’s was the auctioneer. You don’t see the State of New York asking the Estate of Leona Helmsley to take out an auctioneer license, do you? Some other type of license may be more appropriate for Ms. Pletz, but it ain’t an auctioneer license, online or otherwise.