I have written on this topic quite a bit, but via Cato comes another great example of how licensing and regulation, while promoted as consumer protections, much more frequently are incumbent protection against new competitors. Cato has a video of some folks in Oregon who started a moving business, only to find that sate law effectively requires them to get permission of current moving companies before they can operate (apparently, someone in Oregon is enamored of medieval guild systems).
How the law works is that when a new mover submits his application for a business license, existing movers can file an objection (which apparently is pro forma). The new company must then justify to the state why another moving company is justified by the marketplace. Of course, absolutely no guidance is given how such a thing might be proven.
I would have found this unbelievable, had not my company faced the exact same requirement in another context. In Shasta County, California, we wanted a liquor license to sell beer at the store we run at McArthur-Burney Falls State Park. We were told that we could not have a license until we had proven to the County that there was enough demand for another liquor outlet. It was for our protection, they told me -- we wouldn't want you to get in a situation where you might fail.
I have written about liquor licensing before - if ever there was a regulatory regime whose time was long past, this is it. The extensive fingerprinting and background checks one must go through to get a license are outdated remnants of a concern for the return of organized crime, a problem that was obviated by legalization (so that, as usual, the government regulatory regime to fix a problem was instituted at the same moment the problem went away). Now, the liquor licensing process is used as a club by existing competitors to keep new entrants out. My bet is that organized crime is now on the other side of the fence, using the liquor licensing process to hammer honest competitors. And if you really want to see abuse, read the whole Rack 'N Roll saga by Radley Balko.
I bet you are just overcome with suspense wondering if we got our license. In Shasta County, we eventually succeeded, mainly because the store was in a gated park with an entrance fee, and we could make the argument that competition did not really cross the gates of the park. Years later, we lost a similar battle in Lake Havasu City, AZ, where a group of local business people have really organized the town to their benefit and use every tool they can, from zoning to licensing, to keep competitors out.