The Economy Needs A ‘Deregulatory Stimulus’

Forbes references Wayne Crews's study on regulation.

Assessing the width and breadth of the regulatory state is Clyde Wayne Crews of the Competitive Enterprise Institute. The latest edition of his “Ten Thousand Commandments” is filled with arresting but depressing details.

Uncle Sam’s visible activity is bad enough, a projected budget of $3.8 trillion and deficit of $1.65 trillion. But regulation acts as “ a hidden tax,” warns Crews. It’s not easy to estimate the total bill since regulatory costs “are unbudgeted and often indirect.” Still, the numbers that we have are sobering. Uncle Sam has issued nearly 64,000 new rules since 1995.

Unfortunately, compliance costs are even higher today, given the flood of Bush-Obama regulations. Notes Crews: “the current tabulation doesn’t include recent regulatory interventions related to the various stimulus and bailout programs and regulatory costs associated with the recent health care and financial reform legislation. Given that indirect costs—such as the effects of lost innovation or productivity—are notoriously difficult to determine, such figures can further understate the total regulatory burden.”

Read the full article at Forbes.