Inside the Beltway: Federal regs — they cost $1.9 trillion

Yes, someone is actually tracking the hidden economic weight of all those pesky federal regulations. Here’s the startling news: It cost Americans $1.9 trillion last year to comply with all the myriad rules and protocols that are issued by the federal bureaucracy at the rate of 3,500 a year — this according to Clyde Wayne Crews, vice president for policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. The regs are, in essence, like a hidden tax.

“Federal agencies crank out thousands of new regulations every year, but we have little information on the cost or effectiveness on most of them,” says Mr. Crews. “There’s little transparency, and no reliable source of information on exactly what benefits rules are supposed to be generating or if they are serving their intended purpose.”

He adds, “The regulatory state wasn’t small before, but it has grown at an alarming rate during the Obama administration. The president has said publicly he will not wait for Congress to pass legislation because he has a pen and a phone. This means the administration aims to implement policy through regulation which will add a hidden tax on every form of commerce and trickle down to all consumer.”

Curious? Find the appropriately titled 87-page “Ten Thousand Commandments” after 9 a.m. Tuesday here: