Suppose you're a virtuous person in California. You are troubled by the plight of egg-laying hens in large, crowded commercial farms. You go to D.C. and try to persuade Congress to require all American farmers to give their hens twice as much room, but you fail. You then try the same thing in the California legislature, and succeed.
But wait. California consumes more eggs than it produces, so it's a big importer from other states. What's more, requiring California farmers to give their hens twice as much room will put them at a competitive disadvantage with out-of-state egg producers. You could rely on the innate chicken-empathy of your fellow California citizens, but you worry that some of them lack ideological purity and will buy cheap, unenlightened out-of-state "conflict" eggs.
The obvious next step is to ban the transportation across the California state line of conflict eggs. This prevents your fellow Californians from making the incorrect ethical choice, and protects the local farms from unfair competition. It's arguably a violation of the Interstate Commerce Cause, but that will take a long time to work out in the courts.
In the meantime, eggs were $1.18 in California a dozen a couple of years ago but have risen to between $3.16 and $5.00 now. Can price caps be far behind?
Over the holidays I noticed that our local grocery store was having trouble keeping eggs in stock--lots of empty shelves. I thought it was just an outbreak of holiday baking enthusiasm, but maybe not! It may be a ripple effect from the growers in the Midwest who want to maintain access to California markets, and had either to invest $40 a chicken in larger cages or to slaughter half their chickens to make room. In any case, my neighbors who sell fresh eggs may find that their free-range prices are starting to look pretty competitive. Maybe the next law needs to prohibit all municipal anti-noise poultry-raising regulations and promote "victory" chicken gardens.