One of the ironies of our time is that progressive laws often hurt those they’re supposed to help. Restrictions on housing construction, such as almost anything the California Coastal Commission does or SB 375 from 2008, raise prices, making it difficult, even impossible for poor people to find housing. I wrote several columns on that earlier this year at The Orange County Register.

So poor people get to “enjoy” our beautiful coast by sleeping in bushes, or moving to Iowa.

In similar fashion is Assembly Bill 1066, by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego. It just passed the state Senate and is headed to the Assembly, which defeated a similar bill earlier this year. The threshold for farm workers getting overtime pay would be cut from the current 60 hours a week to 40 hours; and daily, from 10 to 8 hours. That would match the current state law for non-farm workers.

Critics point out that farm work is seasonal, with the hours bunched together during harvest season.

FoxBusiness quoted the honorable assemblywoman, “Eventually humanity wins out. I think people realize just how tough of a job it is and how this inequality is really affecting people’s lives.”

And Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, said, “It’s time that we do right by these men and women who work these fields every single day to nourish our bodies.”

Except nice sentiments don’t repeal the laws of supply and demand. If the price of something goes up, it is in less demand. So if the price of farm labor rises, there just will be less of it. Either farm companies will hire more labor on the black market, where no labor laws are applied, or the jobs just will be killed; and more automation will be used, with the computer programs devised by the billionaires of Silicon Valley and the new robot machines manufactured in China. The workers will go on unemployment, or move to other states. Many of these workers are immigrants, legal and illegal, who will just stay in Mexico and work the fields there.

And if Sen. de Leon really wants to help farm (and other poor) workers, he should stop playing footsie with hedge-fund and jobs-killing billionaire Tom Steyer. A year ago, both tried to include in Senate Bill 350, co-authored by de Leon, a 50 percent cut in gas use in the state.

The only way to achieve that would have been to greatly increase the price of gas, hitting hardest those who drive long distances to jobs, in particular de Leon’s own L.A. constituents and farm workers. You don’t have to do much research to figure that one out. Just look on the roads and freeways to see who’s driving the the 20-year-old Toyotas with lawnmowers on the truck bed: it’s working class folks, many of them immigrants. Not a Tesla driver among them.

Fortunately, common sense, something of which there is an increasing shortage in the Golden State, prevailed, although I suspect only briefly, and that part of SB 350 was excised.

But it’s these attacks on Californians, in the guise of “helping” them, that make politics in California so maddening.

Longtime California commentator John Seiler’s email is: