April 15, 2019
In a remarkable human achievement, scientists took the first-ever image of a black hole. The effort took eight telescopes on five continents, five petabytes of data, and an algorithm designed by a team led by MIT grad student Katie Bouman. On a smaller scale, a forthcoming executive order could help rein in “regulatory dark matter,” a cosmological term CEI’s Wayne Crews borrowed to describe regulations that “require compliance without ever having been subject to a period of public comment and review.”
April 8, 2019
The news cycle was more sizzle than steak last week. President Trump threatened to shut down the southern border and backed off almost immediately, so no harm was done except to the new NAFTA/USMCA’s hopes of passage. House Democrats also asked for a bunch of presidential documents, but Republicans said no. While all that was going on, rulemaking agencies issued more than 80 new regulations ranging from assaulting pornography to NASA penalties.
April 1, 2019
Pundits spent the week engaging in mortal combat over the Mueller Report, which none of them have read, and spring officially sprung with baseball’s opening day on Thursday. Meanwhile, rulemaking agencies issued new regulations ranging from goat scrapie to pulse crop enforcement.
March 25, 2019
As tempers flared over how many “chuggas” to say before “choo-choo,” the 2019 Federal Register topped the 10,000-page mark last week and the number of new final regulations passed 500. Meanwhile, rulemaking agencies issued new regulations ranging from swap transactions to liquid mail.
March 19, 2019
Corrupt government and authoritarianism have been the historical rule rather than the exception. The U.S. Constitution’s elevation of individual rights and restraints on governmental power in particular represented the peak of the exception.
March 18, 2019
President Trump has declared passing the new NAFTA/USMCA as his top legislative priority, but congressional ratification will not be automatic. Mexico and Canada are also refraining from ratifying the deal due to President Trump’s recent steel and aluminum tariffs against them. The Senate also pushed back against his national emergency declaration, and the world mourns with New Zealand after a terrible tragedy. Meanwhile, rulemaking agencies issued new regulations ranging from vegetable power of attorney to Honduran archaeology.
March 13, 2019
The administrative state, blessed by Congress, has dispensed with the Founders’ system of legislation fashioned solely by an elected body. Regulatory reforms call for holding Congress accountable for agencies’ rules and regulations, but the deeper reality is that Congress already is accountable, in the sense of blame, for the current state of affairs.
March 11, 2019
Last week was low-drama by recent standards, but still had some important developments. The U.S. trade deficit set a record for the second year in a row, which fortunately has nothing to do with economic health one way or the other. Meanwhile, regulatory agencies issued new regulations ranging from sewage incineration to pecan reporting.
March 6, 2019
The deterioration of the principle of separation of powers is a signature feature of the powerful federal Administrative State. This corrosion is accompanied by a loss of federalism and enfeeblement of the constitutional authority of the states.
March 4, 2019
The Michael Cohen hearing shenanigans gobbled up the headlines, but actual substantive news happened regarding talks with China and North Korea—in particular, a planned tariff increase from 10 percent to 25 percent on $200 billion of Chinese goods has been delayed “until further notice.” Meanwhile, agencies issued new regulations ranging from fiberglass mats to wax.