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My reflexive response is to say look at SOPA and what can happen when the government gets in the business of regulating the internet - a bunch of ill-informed people do their best to impose stupid and harmful laws. After thinking about it, though, I think the thing here is that the business that want to put cookies on your machine have a lot more money than you do, and they are probably going to give enough money to politicians to make sure restrictions never are put into place. I do think that there is an element of personal responsibility that should be expected out of US consumers. As you noted, it isn't all that hard to keep all those tracking cookies at bay, but most people probably don't even try. Also, cookies are not always a bad thing, and make it much more simple to log in to sites that you visit often. That said, I don't think it would be too much of a burden to have an opt-in requirement for cookies. I just don't think that we will see it in the US anytime soon.