The PJ Tatler

Can We Ever Lighten The Crushing Weight Of Federal Regulations?

The Hill had a pretty disheartening look at The Lightbringer years earlier today.

Obama famously signaled his intent to use the machinery of government to further his policy goals after the 2010 elections, declaring: “Where Congress won’t act, I will.”

Since then, the administration has pressed ahead unilaterally on several fronts, including immigration, gun control, cybersecurity and sentencing guidelines for drug offenses.

Meanwhile, new federal rules are accumulating faster than outdated ones are removed, resulting in a steady increase in the number of federal mandates.

Data collected by researchers at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center shows that the Code of Federal Regulations, where all rules and regulations are detailed, has ballooned from 71,224 pages in 1975 to 174,545 pages last year.

“All incentives are to regulate more,” said Susan Dudley, the director of George Washington University’s Regulatory Studies Center.

The fight over executive power is increasingly pitting the three branches of government against each other, with Congress and the judiciary struggling to assert power over officials with broad discretion to issue rules.

This is a conversation many of us have been having for years, long before the current administration decided that the Legislative Branch was nothing more than a big “Oops!” on the part of the Founding Fathers (or whatever the PC Hippie elite is calling them these days).

Almost always, the first thing leftists will do when conservatives talk about putting the federal regulatory behemoth on a diet is begin caterwauling about “SAFE FOOD!!!!!” It’s as if the only federal agency that exists is the FDA and our only plan for achieving victory is getting tainted meat to our political enemies.

As this post points out, almost all regulations benefit some interest group somewhere and that’s what makes them difficult to repeal once they’re on the books. The overall regulatory zeitgeist is anti-business, however, and cannot continue to proceed unchecked. It is the stifling regulation burden that’s ruining California through entrepreneurial stasis.

Forget all of the whining about demographics, what the GOP needs are pro-business candidates who can articulate the message of real opportunity and just how antithetical to that the federal regulation beast is.