Is the sun setting on daylight saving time?



There aren’t many public policy issues on which about 70% of Americans dislike the status quo and there is no real partisan divide, but for which nothing gets done to change it. Well that’s where we are with daylight saving time, where Americans agree on the problem but not the solution.

The fight over daylight saving time has been going on for more than 100 years now. Should we turn the clocks forward in the spring and set them back in the fall? If not, then should we either stick with daylight saving time or the more traditional standard time?

This is the focus of this week’s episode of my new podcast “Margins of Error.” We go on a journey every week to explore topics that seem to be on the margins at first glance, but that’s actually where the fun and knowledge really begin.

Let’s start with some myth busting on daylight saving time.

Did you know that it’s daylight saving time, not daylight “savings” time? You are saving daylight, not savings daylight.

And contrary to popular belief, daylight saving time was not invented for the benefit of farmers. Nor was it really invented by Benjamin Franklin, as some people believe.

Lastly, parts of some or entire states, like Hawaii, don’t even change their clocks.

But the battle over daylight saving time goes beyond factoids, however. It’s about how the federal government stepped in to create a uniform system of time in the US in 1966 that only a third of Americans enjoy — a system that some in Congress are trying to overturn at this very moment.

It turns out that, as it is with many other issues and national debates, there are competing special interests with a lot of money at play. There aren’t many issues where the movie industry goes up against the golf industry.

Beyond special interests, the health of Americans is at stake, as some link changing the clocks to increases in heart attacks and crime among major issues.

To figure out who is right and wrong, we’ll talk with experts (and yes there are experts) who have devoted a lot of their time (and daylight hours) to getting the country to adopt daylight saving time all year around, standard time all year around or even stick with the current system.

You’ll have to tune in to hear guest and “Pod Save America” host Jon Lovett and I discuss what we think is a fairly unique solution to solve America’s time disagreement.

I must admit I came into the episode with one belief on how we should tell time, and I came out with another. I’m curious if you will feel the same way, after listening to this week’s episode. Time will tell.

Get the latest episodes of “Margins of Error” as soon as they drop. Find it in Apple Podcasts, Spotify or your favorite podcast app.



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Written by bourbiza

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