Tag: Deregulation

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As a direct consequence of the lockdowns, more than a million Israelis have lost their jobs, and the country faces a 25% unemployment rate. Getting those individuals back at work is a national priority, failing to do so will not only destroy the lives of many families but also bring social unrest. Unfortunately, the government […]

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I am a safety professional. I am familiar with plenty of cases where people did not follow the rules and people ended up dead. Trevor Kletz has the highly readable What Went Wrong? and Still Going Wrong – find them in your library for some stories that will raise the hair on your neck. Alternatively, […]

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President Trump has continued to act within the boundaries of our Constitution and laws, including in his declaration of a national emergency for COVID-19. He has not used this crisis to seize power for himself, or to direct goodies to his party, supporters, or family. I will lay out some chunks of law and the […]

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Conservative Is As Conservative Does

 

Trump thumbs upPresident Trump is the most conservative president of my lifetime, including President Reagan. This is true, as a matter of fact, across all three of the legs of the old conservative coalition stool: economy, national defense, and social conservatism. With an impressive record of promises kept, despite the worst efforts of Democrats and Conservatism Inc., American voters have a real choice in 2020.

President Trump has done more to strengthen NATO, as opposed to papering over other nations’ hiding under our nuclear umbrella and so shifting the burden onto our taxpayers and our cities under ICBM target designations. He has, without a massive military build-up (despite his hyping of our latest purchases), imposed more economic pain on bad actors (Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran) than any president since at least Reagan, and done so to the advantage of American working families. President Trump’s policies have paid off in growing NATO member states spending at least 2 percent of their GDP on their own defense, from two to eight members, outside the United States. This satisfies Americans’ basic sense of fairness, building a reasonable basis for continued commitment to an alliance that is finally showing signs of taking itself seriously. Such a substantial demonstration of commitment also serves notice to Russia and China that NATO is not a paper tiger.

President Trump has similarly pushed the United Nations to really live up to its fine phrases, its written aspirations. Far from abandoning the world or merely patronizing other nations, he has treated them as adults, as sovereign states who are entitled to pursue their interests while we pursue ours. He made that point again in hosting an on-camera meeting of the U.N. Security Council members. Read or watch the remarks and you will see even China engaging in a mutually respectful manner.

Plunder at Love Field

 

The road to deregulation is often marred by unanticipated pitfalls. Yet such is the case in a saga over airline deregulation in the Dallas-Fort Worth market. The story begins over forty years ago, and its final chapter is now being played out in the courts. In 1978, Congress decided to abolish a hoary New Deal agency, the Civil Aeronautics Board, which was created by the Civil Aeronautics Act (1938) to determine routes and to set prices for airline passenger traffic throughout the United States. But the New Deal law’s price setting powers were quickly used by airlines to suppress competition among themselves, so that interstate fares were consistently higher for short hauls than intrastate fares were for longer ones.

The deregulation movement of the late 1970s had its intended consequence of hastening competition among airlines. But it also created a backlash in one market, Dallas-Fort Worth, located in the backyard of then-Speaker of the House Jim Wright. Wright feared that vigorous competition to the new Dallas/Fort Worth airport (DFW) would come from the Love Field airport, the home of the upstart Southwest Airlines, which was now poised for the first time to expand operations into the interstate market. Wright thought that flights from Love Field would reduce the air traffic at DFW, which in turn would reduce the revenues needed to fund the debt service on DFW bonds. So in 1979, he induced Congress to pass the Wright Amendment, which perversely restricted all flights out of Love Field outside of Texas and four contiguous states—Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Oklahoma—to aircraft that had 56 or fewer seats.

Unfortunately, this bizarre and protectionist legislation received an undeserved constitutional blessing from the courts in 1991. But local outcry against this rigged system continued so that this already tangled history then took another bizarre turn. By 2004, Southwest mounted an effective campaign to “free Love Field,” which prompted American Airlines to make Southwest an offer it could not refuse. Both companies, the two airlines concluded, would be better off by cartelizing the market by dividing a limited number of gates at Love Field and DFW between them. In order to put this plan into action, however, the two airlines, the DFW Airport Authority, and the two cities (Dallas and Fort Worth) had to reduce the capacity of Love Field. They decided to do so by getting rid of twelve state-of-the-art gates—six at the main terminal and six on Lemmon Avenue—serving Love Field, which were owned by the company Love Terminal Partners (LTP). Flights from these gates could crater the American/Southwest alliance. So these five parties (Southwest, American Air, Dallas, Fort Worth, and DFW) prevailed on Congress in October 2006 to pass the Wright Amendment Reform Act (WARA) which provided that “The City of Dallas shall reduce as soon as practicable, the number of gates available for passenger air service at Love Field to no more than 20 gates. Thereafter, the number of gates available for such service shall not exceed a maximum of 20 gates.” And shortly thereafter, Dallas condemned LTP’s gates and promptly razed them. That’s one way to ground the competition.

Stopping the Administrative State

 

When the DOJ and Jeff Sessions rolled back 25 “guidance documents” last Tuesday, I was especially encouraged that we may finally be taking back governance and stopping the administrative state from acting like lawmakers. At first I was simply pleased that the “guidelines” from the Obama Administration on affirmative action were being removed. Then I realized that this action was part of a complex but powerful strategy of putting governance in the hands of the President and Congress; other steps have also been taken to tell bureaucrats that they are responsible for enacting legislation, not making it.

The larger strategy has been evident since President Trump took office. For example, the work that Scott Pruitt has been doing and that will be continued by Andrew Wheeler has been remarkable. At least 76 environmental rules  are in the process of being eliminated, according to the New York Times. As of this past December, Trump’s plan to eliminate regulations at a 2:1 ratio has been exceeded and is continuing, according to the White House:

Agencies plan on achieving even more regulatory rollbacks in FY 2018 compared with FY 2017, and plan to issue at least three deregulatory actions for every one new regulation.

The state of the US economy in two words: “getting better.” That’s the learned opinion of John Taylor, the Hoover Institution’s George P. Shultz Senior Fellow in Economics and the Mary and Robert Raymond Professor of Economics at Stanford University. He forecasts continued growth thanks to the latest round of tax cuts and regulatory reform – and wishes Washington would address another of his proscribed principles of economic well-being: budget reform.

What’s Been the Economic Impact of Trump’s Deregulation Push?

 

“Pro-growth” economic policy is about more than just tax reform. Smart deregulation also has the potential to boost growth. Indeed, the Trump administration is counting on deregulation as a key lever for turning a 2% economy into a 3% (or higher) economy. In a report last October, the White House’s Council of Economic Advisers declared that “deregulation will stimulate US GDP growth” and favorably cites research finding that “excessive regulation” suppressed US growth by an average of 0.8% per year since 1980.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that Trump’s deregulatory efforts will boost growth by nearly a percentage point or anywhere close. But the study does suggest regulation might be sub-optimal in a number of areas. For instance, President Trump hopes cutting environmental and other regulations will help get more bang for the buck out of his new infrastructure plan.

Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for January 3, 2018 – O.M.G. it’s 2018! It is the Crimson Crystal Ball edition of the show with your hosts fortune-teller Todd Feinburg and Swami Mike Stopa. We will peer into the future, part the enveloping mists of chaos and tell you what you can expect in the coming year and perhaps beyond! Here are, yes, our much-awaited predictions for 2018! Can you afford *not* to listen?

We will also discuss a column from the New York Times which, gasp, gives begrudging credit to Trump’s deregulation efforts for the economic revival we are enjoying, including the optimism and investment by the business community even before the tax breaks became a reality (or even before they had moved very far along).

The Power Behind Deregulation

 

Remember when Trump promised to cut back regulations to 1960s levels? Well, Neomi Rao, the new Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, may not be able to make that dramatic a change, but she is making a big dent in the regulatory state and she is a long way from finished.

Rao isn’t afraid to show her pluck when it comes to getting things done. George Mason University wanted to change the name of its law school to honor Antonin Scalia, and liberals were up in arms about it. They were especially unhappy that the Charles Koch Foundation was making a $10 million donation to the school. Yet Rao won the support of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg for the name change; Justice Ginsberg had been a longtime friend of Justice Scalia and said the name change was “altogether fitting.”

In July, Ms. Rao was also confirmed as of the Administrator of the OIRA, which is part of OMB. She held a press conference December 14 and described the OIRA’s accomplishments through September, as well as its role for the coming year:

Taking a Look at the State of Trump’s Deregulation Efforts

 

When the Trump White House talks about boosting economic growth, it’s not all tax cuts, tax cuts, tax cuts. Officials also mention the administration’s ongoing deregulatory push as a big part of why Trumponomics will turn a Two Percent Economy into a Three Percent or Four Percent Economy. President Trump himself has cited deregulation as one of his biggest accomplishments so far.

But a new analysis by Bloomberg gives reason for skepticism, at least if you define “deregulation” as actually, you know, removing regulations currently in effect. Not much of that seems to be happening yet. “Only a handful of regulations have actually been taken off the books,” Bloomberg finds.

In this AEI Events Podcast, AEI’s Jeffrey Eisenach hosts Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai for a discussion on the chairman’s first 100 days and his vision for the future of US communications policy. Chairman Pai emphasizes the need to close the digital divide, modernize rules, eliminate unnecessary regulatory burdens, promote entrepreneurship and innovation, protect consumers and public safety, increase agency transparency, and reform agency processes.

In a follow-up discussion, Dr. Eisenach and Chairman Pai discuss the Open Internet Order proceedings and the role of Congress and the courts in addressing the controversial issue, in addition to the importance of ensuring that FCC policies enable competition and empower innovators.

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Conservatives hailed Hillary Clinton’s defeat as the reversal of the Obama legacy. Former President Obama (saying “former” in that context never gets old, does it?), stifled by conservatives in the House of Representatives, was unable to enact his agenda legislatively. Instead, Obama opted to act through executive orders (EOs). Liberals despaired and Republicans celebrated as […]

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I hope no one needs a drug approved by the FDA, a grazing permit from the BLM or a private letter ruling from the IRS. Because the Executive Order on Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs will prevent this until the agencies can find two offsetting regulations to rescind. You see, the Order defines a “regulation or […]

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A few questions, only loosely related: Do we still rely on Middle Eastern nations to produce oil and natural gas? The US now has access to plenty without them. Also, the region has been in turmoil for years and yet I’m paying less than $2 per gallon, so even their impact on the world market doesn’t […]

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Should Republicans Be Focusing Way More on Deregulation Than Tax Cuts?

 

Republicans are sort of boxed in when it comes to taxes. For three decades, tax cuts have been the party’s core issue, and a winning one at that. It helped give the party two two-term presidents and control of Congress after decades in the minority. But today (a) the top rate is 40%, not 70% as it was in 1980; (b) more than 40% of Americans pay no income taxes; (c) federal debt, as a share of GDP, has more than doubled since 2007; (d) a tsunami of entitlement spending is coming; and (e) the American public doubts the pro-growth impact of high-end tax cuts.

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