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Government Regulations are Killing the American Economy

Posted by FactReal on August 5, 2011

GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS = HIDDEN TAXES
The Obama administration is making things worse by imposing bigger burdens on business…and consumers.
   
(Hat tip: GatewayPundit, The Foundry)

A recent study by the Heritage Foundation analyzes Obama’s costly red tape.

Here are some highlights:

Every product imaginable costs more because of regulations:
“The costs of regulation are inevitably passed on to consumers in the form of higher prices and limited product choices. Basic items, such as toilets, showerheads, light bulbs, mattresses, washing machines, dryers, cars, ovens, refrigerators, television sets, and bicycles all cost significantly more because of government decrees on energy use, product labeling, and performance standards that go well beyond safety—as well as hundreds of millions of hours of testing and paperwork to document compliance.”

The annual cost of regulation — $1.75 trillion by one frequently cited estimate — represents twice the amount of individual income taxes collected last year.

● From the beginning of the Obama Administration to mid-fiscal year (FY) 2011, regulators have imposed $38 billion in new costs on the American people, more than any comparable period on record. Consider Washington’s red tape to be a hidden tax.

● Costs are routinely minimized: The actual cost of the new regulations is almost certainly higher due to under-estimation, agencies’ failures to analyze costs, and the fact that “non-major” rules aren’t even calculated.

● The regulations imposed include fuel economy and emission standards for passenger cars, light-duty trucks, and medium-duty passenger vehicles, with an annual cost of $10.8 billion; energy conservation standards for lightbulbs, with an annual cost of $700 million; constraints on “short sales” of securities, at $1.2 billion; and a slew of other costly regulations related to the Dodd–Frank financial regulation statute and Obamacare health regulations.

● More regulators, bigger budgets: In addition to the costs imposed on the private sector, regulations swell the government workforce and fatten the federal budget. According to a report, “regulatory staff at federal agencies (full-time equivalents) increased about 3 percent between 2009 and 2010, from 262,241 to 271,235, and is estimated to rise another 4 percent—to 281,832—in 2011. Federal outlays for developing and enforcing regulations are also expected to grow by 4 percent this year, from $46.9 billion in 2010 (in constant 2005 dollars) to $48.9 billion.”

● More regulations coming: American businesses and the American people continue to suffer under the regulatory burden, all while the government workforce keeps expanding and the number of regulations keep growing, with 2,785 rules in the pipeline.

● This flood of red tape will undoubtedly persist, as hundreds of new regulations stemming from the vast Dodd–Frank financial regulation law, Obamacare, and the EPA’s global warming crusade advance through the regulatory pipeline—all of which further weakens an anemic economy and job creation, while undermining Americans’ fundamental freedoms.

Read the full study.

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