CEI Today: $1.75 trillion regulations, STOCK Act, highway bill and more

Wednesday, February 8, 2012
In the News Today

CEI Podcast for February 2, 2012: The FDA’s Latest Power Grab

Fellow in Consumer Policy Studies Michelle Minton breaks down the FDA’s behind-the-scenes push to regulate dietary supplements nearly as strictly as prescription drugs. >Listen at Libertyweek.org


Regulation Without Representation

Regulatory agencies enact more than 3,500 new regulations in an average year. A new federal rule hits the books roughly every two hours, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Compare that with Congress, which passes fewer than 200 pieces of legislation per year. Only Congress has the power to legislate in the American system of government, but Congress never actually votes on most regulations.

This is regulation without representation, and it is a major problem.

Regulation without representation is a major reason why the Code of Federal Regulations has ballooned to 157,000 pages and counting. It makes it far more difficult to do business and is slowing economic recovery.

The total cost of federal regulations last year was over $1.75 trillion, according to economists Nicole and Mark Crain in a report for the Small Business Administration.

This well exceeds the $1.5 trillion budget deficit that has gotten so much more attention.
> Read the full Investor's Business Daily commenary



CEI.org -
Immigration Tariffs Are Cost-Effective Solution to Illegal Immigration Problem:New Study Makes Case for Free-Market Immigration Reform


Washington, D.C., February 7, 2012 – In a new CEI OnPoint, Immigration Policy Analyst Alex Nowrasteh proposes an innovative solution to our nation’s immigration problems: immigration tariffs. Currently, the flow of immigrants into America is managed by bureaucratic federal agencies that set arbitrary quotas for green cards and work visas through lotteries, arcane bureaucratic processes, and adherence to rules that are especially ill-suited to a modern economy. Instead, Nowrasteh argues, the government should set up a tariff schedule that allows immigrants to pay the federal government to legally enter the U.S. job market. > View the OnPoint & summary on cei.org, The Conservative Case for Immigration Tariffs: A Market Based, Humane Approach to Solving Illegal Immigration

> Interview Alex Nowrasteh

> Watch Alex Nowrasteh on CPAC's immigration panel
, Saturday, February 11, 9:50am



CEI.org -Comments Submitted to U.S.-EU High Level Working Group on Jobs and Growth

CEI trade policy expert Fran Smith submitted comments to a US-EU working group on how to stimulate job and economic growth.  She urges specific reforms, such as removing tariffs and non-tariff trade barriers, rejecting regulatory harmonization, and freezing anti-trust regulation:

The path to economic growth and prosperity is not something readily planned from above but rather is “discovered” by experimentation and experience. Markets are a discovery process – it is not evidence a priori which polices do or do not foster growth and employment. The two primary models are the “harmonization” model of seeking to “standardize” rules between those seeking mutually beneficial trading partners and the “competitive” model which seeks to have each party experiment with rules to determine which are superior. Which approach is superior is not always clear. The “harmonization” approach can easily morph into a “cartelization” path – enriching some within the two blocs but harming the overall economies of both. The “competitive” model can needlessly increase the transaction costs of trade.

In this context, let me discuss the question raised in this proceeding. I have some sympathies for both paths; however, as will be obvious, my belief is that the “harmonization” approach is far less likely to advance economic growth. Politics is too uncertain a process to allow top-down rules to become dominant. > Read the full document on cei.org

> Interview Fran Smith


More commentary from CEI



John Berlau on the controversial STOCK Act before Congress this week:The STOCK Act’s Muzzle — How “Insider Trading” Bill Could Shut Down Grassroots Communication




Marc Scribner on the highway bill before Congress this week: House GOP’s Misguided “Drilling for Roads” Highway Bill Heads to Floor Vote




Keystone and the Unions by Vincent Vernuccio and Matthew Patterson forThe American Spectator, February 7, 2012

Stealth unionization - view Vincent Vernuccio on Fox Business Varney & Co., February 7, 2012


The Great Delusion
by Matthew Patterson for Globalwarming.org, February 7, 2012


All Those Billions, Blowing in the Wind by Marita Noon for Globalwarming.org, February 7, 2012


Stop the Presses! Lowering a Soviet-style Production Quota for Biodiesel Hurts Biodiesel Industry by William Yeatman for Globalwarming.org



CEI is a co-sponsor of this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), Thursday, February 9 to Saturday, February 11 in Washington, D.C.

CEI will have a table in the exhibit hall of the hotel, the Marriot Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, DC.  Please stop by booth 1509 and say hello if you are attending CPAC.

> Book CEI experts on Radio Row.

> See CEI Speakers at CPAC:

CPAC panel featuring Sam Kazman: The Red Tape War: How the Regulatory Burden and Growing Nanny State Threaten Prosperity
Thursday, February 09, 2012
10:00 - 11:00 am
Room "Wilson C"

CPAC panel featuring Vincent Vernuccio: Return of Big Labor: What Can We Learn from Wisconsin & Ohio?
Thursday, February 09, 2012
11:15 am – 12:00 pm
Marshall Ballroom

CPAC panel featuring Fred L. Smith, Jr. & Myron Ebell: The Obama EPA's Green Assault on American Jobs
Thursday, February 09, 2012
4:15 - 5:00 pm
Marshall Ballroom

CPAC panel featuring Ryan Radia: Digital Liberty: Tying Government's Hands on Tech, Telecom, and the Web
Friday, February 10, 2012
2:30 - 3:30 pm
Maryland Room


CPAC panel featuring Alex Nowrasteh: Immigration - High Fences, Wide Gates: States vs. the Feds, the Rule of Law & American Identity

Saturday, February 11, 2012

9:50 - 10:50 am
Marriott Ballroom

Visit Conservative.org/cpac for the full conference agenda.


Ten Thousand Commandments

By Wayne Crews

Welcome to The Other National Debt -- The Cost of Regulation

-> Read Today's Decrees


CEI is a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government.  For more information about CEI, please visit our website, cei.org, and blogs, Globalwarming.org and OpenMarket.org.  Follow CEI on Twitter! Twitter.com/ceidotorg.