Tags: Obama | regulations | EPA | jobs

Ruthless Regulations are Job Killers

By    |   Thursday, 13 December 2012 12:10 PM

Current federal regulations plus those coming under Obamacare will cost American taxpayers and businesses $1.8 trillion annually, more than 20 times the $88 billion the administration estimates, according to a new roundup provided by the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

According to experts, that's enough money for businesses to provide 35 million private sector jobs with an average salary of $50,000.

Complying with Health and Human Services Department requirements alone will cost $184 billion a year, yet regulators are still drafting the rules for the 2,400-page Obamacare law that kicks into gear in 2014.

America was once the Land of the Free, now we’re becoming the Land of Regulations.

Regulations, once thought to be essential for protecting us from harm, are now themselves harming us. Manufacturers are grappling to keep pace with an ever-widening array of regulations. The end result is that many companies are being regulated out of business, and with it, good American jobs.

Angela Logomasini, a senior fellow with the Competitive Enterprise Institute, was recently a guest on my radio show, where she discussed how the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is clamping down on manufacturers by establishing “hazard” mandates that cause manufacturers to pull products off the shelf that are safe. Government promotion of “green chemistry” forces manufacturers to reformulate products, often with inferior ingredients, but at higher prices.

She has written that “as the world re-examines [biologist] Rachel Carson’s anti-pesticide legacy, [we have to] focus on the importance of chemicals designed for crop production. Unfortunately, the benefits of these agrochemicals are at risk as Carson’s legacy of misinformation lives on within the politically organized environmental movement.”

She notes that millions of people around the world are dying and crops are being destroyed by government mandates that pull effective and safe pesticide products off the market.

Green chemistry initiatives run by bureaucrats in states like Washington are costing taxpayers their hard-earned money while keeping innovators on the sidelines.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

The Heritage Foundation recently revealed that “the cost of a new car in America is set to explode, skyrocketing by thousands of dollars, all thanks to a new regulation proposed by President Barack Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.”

The EPA has demanded that “automakers hit a fleet-wide fuel economy average of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025 — double today’s 27.3 standard. The government says it would cost automakers $8.5 billion per year to comply, which means a spike in sticker prices of at least $2,000 to $2,800, according to official projections. Other estimates peg the added costs at $3,100, and that could go even higher.”

In fact, The Wall Street Journal projected that “vehicles that currently cost $15,000 or less will effectively be regulated out of existence.”

Just as overregulation in the pesticide industry poses major safety risks to consumers, experts believe that inherent in the new regulations is that automakers must dramatically downsize some vehicles to meet the standard, which The Heritage Foundation predicts will result in “increased traffic fatalities by the thousands. The new standards would require downsizing for both small and large models, which the government contends will neutralize the risk. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the EPA disagree on the extent of the risk, while outside experts say that the danger would be heightened by the extreme stringency of the proposed standards.”

But consumer deaths are one aspect of this move to overregulation. The other result will be the death of automobile-manufacturing jobs.

We’ve already seen the lack of consumer demand for the Chevy Volt, which revealed that on top of moribund sales, sales tanked again after government subsidies ended.

There’s new speculation that as a result of the new EPA mileage regulations, Detroit car manufacturers will have to convert at least 25 percent of its fleet into hybrids. But as with the Chevy Volt, “hybrid sales peaked in the U.S. two years ago at 3 percent of the market and are declining. The EPA’s $157 billion price tag includes only the estimate of what manufacturers will have to invest in new technology, not the billions more that will hemorrhage when nobody buys their EPA-approved products,” according to The Heritage Foundation.

National Economic Research Associates used the federal government’s own data in finding that Obama’s proposed EPA regulations would cost America over 180,000 jobs per year between 2013 and 2020. That would add up to a total nationwide loss of about 1.44 million jobs.

On top of that, an economic study produced by the Manufacturers Alliance and financed by the National Association of Manufacturers and the American Petroleum Institute, concluded that if the EPA adopted the strictest standard under consideration, the projected U.S. job loss is 7.3 million, equivalent to 4.3 percent of the entire work force in 2020.

Writing for The Hill, Rep. Joe Heck, R-Nev., sums it up nicely: “Businesses and individuals from coast to coast have been feeling the effects of the regulatory over-reach of the Obama administration. By eliminating some of the barriers to expanding businesses, opening businesses and hiring workers, we can start to reverse the effects of the economic downturn and get America back on a path to prosperity. I believe if we balance consumer and worker protections with the burdens we place on businesses, more jobs will be created.”

Everyone favors safety and efficiency, but these do not have to come at the cost of our freedom and economic security. Regulations have become the means to a political agenda. They are costing us much more than we realize.

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Current federal regulations plus those coming under Obamacare will cost American taxpayers and businesses $1.8 trillion annually, more than 20 times the $88 billion the administration estimates, according to a new roundup provided by the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
Thursday, 13 December 2012 12:10 PM
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