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OpenMarket: Regulatory Reform

  • This Week in Ridiculous Regulations 

    October 15, 2019
    The latest Mad Libs-style political feud involves the NBA, the television cartoon South Park, and the Chinese government. President Trump also issued a pair of executive orders intended to rein in regulatory dark matter, and the 2019 Federal Register topped 55,000 pages. Rulemaking agencies published new regulations ranging from pedestrians and bicycle traffic to significant uses of fatty acids.
  • President Trump Signs Executive Orders to Improve Use of Guidance Documents

    October 11, 2019
    President Donald J. Trump on October 9th signed two executive orders (EOs) intended to improve and limit the use of guidance documents. This is good, potentially great, news for individuals and small businesses that have not violated any laws or even any regulations, and yet have felt the heavy hand of the regulatory state.
  • More Shields and Fewer Swords in Realm of Federal Regulation

    October 11, 2019
    Yesterday the New Civil Liberties Alliance (NCLA) held a fascinating event on one of their marquee cases, Baldwin v. United States (read more in my post from last month—it’s the second of the four cases discussed). The case involves the Internal Revenue Service issuing a tax filing rule that conflicted both with legislation passed by Congress and with centuries-old common law practice.
  • Software Solutions for Regulatory Reform?

    October 8, 2019
    On Friday, the C. Boyden Gray Center for the Study of the Administrative State held a fascinating conference, “The Administration of Democracy,” which covered issues like campaign finance law, apportionment, and the president’s tax returns. The fourth panel of the day, “The Democracy of Administration,” featured a discussion of the public comment process on proposed regulations, now accessed by most people via the web portal regulations.gov.
  • Costs of Economic Distortions Caused by 'Ordinary' Federal Spending, Subsidies, and Stimulus

    October 7, 2019
    While routine ground-level federal spending is less glamorous than interventionist national agendas, socialization of properties and resources, or economic “stimulus” and “big science” crusades, the distortions and displacement caused by ordinary government spending are nonetheless highly significant.
  • This Week in Ridiculous Regulations   

    October 7, 2019
    Non-impeachment news involved a major court ruling on net neutrality, plus a new tariff. This year’s Federal Register is on pace to surpass last year’s after a nearly 2,000-page week. Rulemaking agencies published new regulations ranging from modern swine slaughter to order forms for illegal drugs.
  • Costs of Government Steering by Direct Ownership or Control of Resources

    October 3, 2019
    If one thinks government ought to run a sector of the economy (single-payer health care, education, retirement, energy), then almost by definition that individual would not be inclined toward acknowledging regulatory costs of lesser interventions. The benefits will always exceed the costs in that mindset.
  • Vast Regulatory Costs of Top-Down National Plans, Agendas, and Legislative Schemes

    October 2, 2019
    If government steers in some societal, industrial, or sector-specific endeavor via top-down national plans, agendas, or legislative schemes, it can generate ongoing regulatory costs even without further legislation and rules. Not infrequently, extraordinarily consequential policy choices can eclipse the handful of official regulatory cost estimates that policymakers typically regard as illustrative of government intervention.
  • This Week in Ridiculous Regulations   

    September 30, 2019
    Congress is out of session for the next two weeks, and the impeachment investigation will likely dominate headlines for some time to come. Meanwhile, the 2019 Federal Register topped 50,000 pages and rulemaking agencies published new regulations ranging from toll-free numbers to voluntary rabbit grading.
  • This Week in Ridiculous Regulations   

    September 23, 2019
    The House passed a continuing resolution to avoid a federal shutdown until November 21st. The Senate will likely follow suit this week. The 2019 Federal Register will also almost certainly top 50,000 pages this week. Meanwhile, rulemaking agencies published new regulations ranging from gooseberry fruit to meat grades.

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