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  • Commentary posted January 6, 2016 by James L. Gattuso, Diane Katz 10 Worst Regulations of 2015

    Like streamers raining down upon New Year’s revelers in Times Square, a torrent of red tape was unleashed on the nation in 2015. Literally thousands of new regulations combined with existing ones to infringe on every aspect of daily life. Justified or not, each one imposes an economic burden and chips away at individual freedom. Which regulations were the worst? Here is…

  • Backgrounder posted December 14, 2015 by Diane Katz An Environmental Policy Primer for the Next President

    The nation’s environment has dramatically improved in the four decades since adoption of America’s foundational environmental statutes.[1] It is also true that there could have been even greater improvement at far less cost—economic and social—had lawmakers forgone centralized government control in favor of the transformative powers of market incentives and private…

  • Backgrounder posted December 4, 2015 by Paul Winfree, Daren Bakst, Rachel Sheffield, James Phillips, Diane Katz, Nicolas Loris, Katie Tubb, Roger Severino, Sarah Torre, Lindsey Burke, James Sherk, Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D., Brett D. Schaefer, David Inserra Important Policy Riders for the FY 2016 Appropriations Bills

    The Constitution unequivocally grants Congress the exclusive power to appropriate funds for the “necessary and proper” operations of government.[1] James Madison wrote in The Federalist No. 58 that providing budgetary powers to Congress was a critical element in maintaining individual rights: “The power over the purse may, in fact, be regarded as the most complete and…

  • Commentary posted September 25, 2015 by Diane Katz Export-Import bank debate: GE brings good things to hype

    Media outlets across the nation readily accepted the claim this week by General Electric that 500 U.S. jobs, including many from Greenville, would be moved overseas because the Republican-led Congress rejected reauthorization the Export-Import Bank. All of which is nonsense. The real story is that GE, along with Boeing and other top beneficiaries of the government bank,…

  • Issue Brief posted July 13, 2015 by Diane Katz Export–Import Bank: Propaganda versus the Facts

    A June 29 posting on The Hill’s Congress Blog carried the headline: “The Arguments for Ex–Im No One Can Rebut.”[1] The author, John Murphy, the senior vice president of international policy of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, claimed that, in a recent hearing, “no one was able to rebut my arguments about the indispensable role the bank plays in specific circumstances.”…

  • Issue Brief posted June 10, 2015 by Diane Katz, Veronique de Rugy The End of Ex–Im: No Threat to Exports or Employment

    The charter of the Export-Import Bank (Ex–Im) will expire on June 30 unless reauthorized by Congress, which looks increasingly unlikely. Beneficiaries of the bank are issuing dire warnings about a future without export subsidies, in which exports abruptly decline and jobs supposedly disappear. The facts say otherwise. All existing Ex–Im deals would remain intact, and the…

  • Commentary posted May 15, 2015 by James L. Gattuso, Diane Katz Regulating escalators and escalating regulation

    What do restaurant menus, refrigerators, community banks and escalators have in common? All were subjected to yet more federal regulation last year. No fewer than 184 "major" new rules have been imposed since the start of the Obama administration, costing Americans about $80 billion per year in additional regulatory costs. And many more regulations are on the way.…

  • Commentary posted May 11, 2015 by Diane Katz Why we should allow the Ex-Im Bank to expire

    A lot of people in Washington, D.C., don't believe that American businesses can compete in the global market without subsidies from taxpayers. These same folks are pushing for a reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, a government outfit that doles out export subsidies to a select group of companies. To hear bank officials tell it, small businesses and thousands of…

  • Backgrounder posted May 11, 2015 by James L. Gattuso, Diane Katz Red Tape Rising: Six Years of Escalating Regulation Under Obama

    The number and cost of government regulations continued to climb in 2014, intensifying Washington’s control over the economy and Americans’ lives. The addition of 27 new major rules[1] last year pushed the tally for the Obama Administration’s first six years to 184, with scores of other rules in the pipeline. The cost of just these 184 rules is estimated by regulators to…

  • Issue Brief posted February 24, 2015 by Diane Katz Export-Import Bank Impervious to Reform

    Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, some Members of Congress believe that a few legislative tweaks will remedy all that is wrong with the Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im).[1] In fact, the pending House bill to reauthorize Ex-Im through 2019 is largely a regurgitation of “reforms” previously mandated by Congress—without appreciable effect. The only meaningful way to…

  • Commentary posted January 28, 2015 by Diane Katz, James L. Gattuso Growth of regs threatens liberty

    To say that Americans have a regulation problem is putting it lightly. For instance, the government is now setting the serving size of breath mints, and demanding 12-point type on clothing labels. It prohibits dog walkers from strolling with more than four pooches, and requires cat food manufacturers to list calories in “kilocalories per kilogram.” The feds also…

  • Commentary posted January 5, 2015 by James L. Gattuso, Diane Katz Ten worst regulations of 2014

    As 2014 comes to a close, it is enveloped in red tape. From the breakfast table to the night light, government regulators invaded nearly every moment of our lives. Here's our take on the 10 worst examples of the past year: 10. Federal Censorship Commission. The FCC began considering a petition to revoke the broadcast license of a Washington, D.C., radio station for using…

  • Commentary posted November 17, 2014 by Diane Katz, James L. Gattuso Obama's Final Two Years: A Sprint on Regulation?

    The election results were a crushing political blow for the Obama administration, giving Republicans firm control of both houses of Congress for the final two years of his term. But this in no way signals the end of the president's policy agenda. It simply shifts the action to regulatory agencies. In the days since the vote, this has already begun. Obama is moving…

  • Backgrounder posted October 31, 2014 by James L. Gattuso, Diane Katz Regulation: Killing Opportunity

    In his January 2014 State of the Union address, President Barack Obama vowed to wield his executive powers when faced with congressional resistance to his legislative agenda: “America does not stand still—and neither will I,” he said. “So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation … that’s what I am going to do.”[1] This provocative declaration was…

  • Commentary posted October 10, 2014 by Diane Katz Responsible to Taxpayers, Not Corporations, Congress Shouldn't Renew Export-Import Bank's Charter

    There is something unseemly about a $90 billion corporation - i.e., Boeing - demanding ever more taxpayer subsidies to export its products. And it is downright ludicrous for the company to warn of "Armageddon" should Congress eliminate the source of said subsidies, the Export-Import Bank. All of which makes for a brazen corporate welfare campaign - one wholly…