Sunday, July 13, 2014

Jack Kelly vs (un-named) regulation

Today Jack Kelly takes on ... regulations: "Jack Kelly / The high cost of regulations Congress should suspend all regs imposed since 2000 and assess whether they've been worthwhile".

I suppose this is supposed to be a populist thing, but I find Kelly blaming all of our economic ills on regulations, with no better than a partisan jab at the increasing income gap, to be entirely unconvincing. Below is the comment I made on the online PG.

Jack Kelly fails to name one example of a regulation he would see eliminated. That in and of itself should raise red flags.

In the last thirty five or so years, there has been steady and even somewhat spectacular productivity growth. But wages at the median, adjusted for inflation, have stagnated. Women have gone to work, families have maxed out first credit cards and then the excess value in their homes in an effort to keep up a middle class standard of living and now those who still have jobs after the great recession started on President's Bush's watch are cutting way back on spending. That strikes me as equally or maybe a more plausible explanation for the slow down in the economy as regulations. But the question is why wages are not keeping pace with increases in productivity, why the increases are going almost entirely to the people at the top, why the wealth is not, as conservatives/Republicans repeatedly reference, "trickling down".

Conservatives only bring this issue up during the Presidency of a Democrat, and always act as if it started at the beginning of the Democrats Presidency. In Obama's case, George Bush left him a ruined economy, totally mishandled by the Bush administration and the Republican Congress of January 2003 to December of 2006. The current gridlock caused by Republicans in Congress has stymied all efforts to improve the economy.

Blaming regulations for problems started in the Reagan administration with anti-tax, anti-regulation, anti-union and anti-middle class policies that were all designed to concentrate income and wealth in the hands of the 1% is the height of disingenuous commentary. .

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