Good post on the effects of government regulation, over at the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Open Market blog.
A story in the Star Tribune in Minneapolis St. Paul shows how adverse effects of such needlessly onerous standard can spill over into other areas. In this case, a meat plant had to shut its doors, putting 200 people out of work because their water exceeded EPA’s standard by 8 parts per billion. EPA can’t show that the Clinton era its standard won’t save a soul, but we do know that economic hard times hurt many.
Here’s an excerpt from the Strib piece:
More than 200 workers in a small town 90 minutes west of Minneapolis have lost their jobs after a beef slaughtering plant was forced to shut down because its water contained excessive levels of arsenic, a condition the plant owner said he couldn’t afford to fix in time to avoid federal penalties.
“I’m done,” said William Gilger, owner of North Star Beef Inc. in Buffalo Lake, Minn.
The Heritage Foundation has a good post on how the EPA intends to expand their control of the economy in order to save us from global cooling warming.
In essence, the endangerment finding says that global warming and climate change pose a serious threat to public health and safety and thus almost anything that emits carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases could be regulated under the Clean Air Act.
The endangerment finding is the first step in a long regulatory process that could lead to EPA requiring different regulations and units of emissions requirements for each gadget that emits carbon dioxide. The first target would be automobiles, but the EPA’s Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) suggested regulations of almost everything that moves, including new regulations smaller items such lawnmowers and forklifts. The ANPR also suggests putting speed limiters on large trucks on the table as a means of reducing carbon dioxide and even suggested sharkskin boats oozing bubbles to reduce emissions from the shipping industry.
…Beyond things that move, the agency could go after things that stand still. More than a million energy using businesses, buildings, and farms could also be hit with crushing administrative burdens and costly controls. And even if EPA decides not to go that far, they will almost certainly be sued into doing so.
And they have a forecast of the potential costs of this regulation:
However, the economic damage would be similar to any carbon capping bill passed by Congress and perhaps even worse. Dr. David Kreutzer and Dr. Karen Campbell of The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Data Analysis found the economic costs of EPA regulations to be:
• Cumulative gross domestic product (GDP) losses are nearly $7 trillion by 2029 (in inflation adjusted 2008 dollars)
• Single-year GDP losses exceed $600 billion (in inflation-adjusted 2008 dollars).
• Annual job losses exceed 800,000 for several years.
• Some industries will see job losses that exceed 50 percent.
If you tax or regulate something, you get less of it. If you cut taxes and remove regulations, you get more of it. The best protection a worker has is not onerous taxes and regulations on their employer. The best protection a worker has is a choice among a huge number of employers. If you want a choice of employers, try creating conditions that employers actually want.
Republicans care about creating conditions that allow businesses to create jobs. We want this because we believe that people should not dependent on the government for their livelihood. Your ability to choose your employer is part of your liberty. Democrats care about inventing a faked crisis using junk science in order to justify government-coerced redistribution of wealth.