And So I Go: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Archive for the ‘American Crash 2011’ Category

We Americans believe that we are the truly free people in the world, but this since Obama is a myth,  a lie!  We are not at all FREE because the one thing that made us Free–our capitalist system— has been almost destroyed by Obamanation.  Thru the overwhelming intrusion of the Environmental  Protection Agency (EPA) regulations and Obama’s pandering to the unions with his radical liberal stacked National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) our economy and the business (capitalism) that fuels it has been so handicapped as to be crippled.  The United States now ranks 10th. in the world in the list of  free economies.   Hong Kong and Singapore rank as 1 and 2!    How did we get here?  Why are We the People willing to accept this situation?  When will the workers of America realize that it is in our best interest for the FREE Market to truly be free?   Have any of you ever gotten a job from a poor man?  NO! NO!  It is the rich man who invests in companies which then provide the jobs for all of us to get ahead.  Damnit anyhow.  I am so tired of hearing “tax the rich” and “spread the wealth around”.  The government taxes the rich means the rich do two things:  stop investing  and creating  American businesses  and 2.  move their money out of the United States.  People do you remember the tax payer bail out of Chrysler and the Unions by Obama?  Well don’t look now but Chrysler is now producing JEEPS in China.  Yes!  They took our tax payer dollars and politely moved their operation to a freeier  less government intrusive and union demanding China.  (But don’t you union guys worry because your pensions and benefits have been protected.  Of course your kids and grandkids will not have a decent life and will be paying for your demands,  but who cares , right? )

Well, my rant for today.   Read the following article and weep.  sincerely, BB

 

e America’s Ranking in the 2013 Index of Economic Freedom

When we talk about “economic freedom,” what do we mean—and why does it matter?

Economic freedom is the fundamental right of every human to control his or her own labor and property. In an economically free society, individuals are free to work, produce, consume, and invest in any way they please, with that freedom both protected by the state and unconstrained by the state.

Since reaching a global peak in 2008, sadly, economic freedom around the world has continued to stagnate.   (Now refresh my poor memory:  what happened in 2008?  Oh yes, Obama and the Democrats took over the government!  that’s what happened!  BB)

Today launches the 19th edition of the Index of Economic Freedom, produced by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal. The 2013Index was edited by Ambassador Terry Miller, director of Heritage’s Center for International Trade and Economics; Kim Holmes, Ph.D., Heritage’s Distinguished Fellow; and Edwin J. Feulner, Ph.D., Heritage’s president.

What are the reasons for the worldwide sluggishness? As Ambassador Miller writes in The Wall Street Journal, “Particularly concerning are the rise of populist ‘democratic’ movements that use the coercive power of government to redistribute income and control economic activity.”

While “corrupt political and legal environments cause underdevelopment in poorer countries,” Miller writes, “unfortunately, economic favoritism and cronyism exist in advanced democracies, too.” Americans are well aware, and the overall U.S. score has been dropping since 2009. From 2009 to 2010, the U.S. declined from being a “free” economy to “mostly free.” This year, it ranks 10th in the world.

 

The Most Free

1. Hong Kong
2. Singapore
3. Australia
4. New Zealand
5. Switzerland
6. Canada
7. Chile
8. Mauritius
9. Denmark
10. United States

One reason for America’s lack of freedom is that its scores on regulatory efficiency—which include business freedom and labor freedom—have dropped. The editors point to the fact that “over 100 new major federal regulations have been imposed on business operations since early 2009 with annual costs of more than $46 billion.”

Miller explains that what happens in Washington affects not only every corner of America, but of the world:

It is no exaggeration to blame the recent slowdown in economic liberalization around the world on the lack of U.S. leadership. Trade flows—the engine of world growth—have declined as the U.S. economy has stagnated. Protectionism threatens consumers and businesses with higher costs and restrictions in supply. Ill-conceived banking regulations such as the Dodd-Frank law generate uncertainty and anxiety. And investment freedom declines in the face of higher costs and new legal and tax liabilities such as those introduced by ObamaCare. These misguided U.S. policies hurt Americans first, but others feel the harm as well.  (READ this paragraph again and again until you understand it!  Dodd-Frank and Obamacare  are bad news for Americans!  BB)

North America continues to be the world’s freest region, though Mexico was the only economy that improved its Index score over the last year. The region boasts two “mostly free” economies (Canada and the United States) and one “moderately free” economy (Mexico). It leads the world in terms of rule of law, regulatory efficiency, and open markets, but is getting worse where government spending is concerned.

About the Index

Launched in 1995, the Index evaluates countries in four broad areas of economic freedom: rule of law; regulatory efficiency; limited government; and open markets. Based on an aggregate score, each of 177 countries graded in the 2013 Index was classified as “free,” “mostly free,” “moderately free,” “mostly unfree,” or “repressed.”

The broader areas are broken down into 10 measures: property rights, freedom from corruption, fiscal freedom, government spending, business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom, trade freedom, investment freedom, and financial freedom.

The New Website

The updated website, launched today, is interactive:

  • Compare up to three countries of your choice on all 10 measures of economic freedom with an interactive, color-coded chart feature.  (Do this now to see how America has fallen in all areas since Obama!  BB )

Each country’s profile includes quick facts such as its population, gross domestic product (GDP), unemployment rate, and the amount of foreign investment flowing into the country—and you can embed this data in your blog or website.

Visit the 2013 Index of Economic Freedom

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In case you missed these during the year I am posting Heritage top 10 2012 research papers here in one place.  They are all as relevant now as when they were published; in fact some even more so.  The United States is well on its way to total destruction as a free nation.  Our one chance at salvation was to elect Mitt Romney for President and we didn’t.  Obama won by a slim margin, but he  and the Democrats take that as a mandate to do as they please and because they still control the Senate and Harry Reid is at the helm there is nothing in the federal government to stop them.   The only forces now fighting Obama and Obamanation are the states and some very brave companies and individuals  who are trying thru the courts to hold off or hold back the onslaught of our demise.    I think you need to know what all of these reports say in order to perhaps  minimize the  personal damage the federal government will do to individuals in the coming years.  Sincerely and Happy New Year my Friends, BB

Top 10 Heritage Research Papers of 2012

Todd Thurman

December 27, 2012 at 8:02 am

federal spending 2008 – 2012As the year comes to a close, we reflect on 2012 by offering highlights of the top 10 most-read research papers by Heritage scholars.

1) The 2012 Index of Dependence on Government
By William Beach and Patrick Tyrrell
February 8, 2012
The great and calamitous fiscal trends of our time—dependence on government by an increasing portion of the American population, and soaring debt that threatens the financial integrity of the economy—worsened yet again in 2010 and 2011.

2) Taxmageddon: Massive Tax Increase Coming in 2013
By Curtis Dubay
April 4, 2012
If President Obama and Congress fail to act this year, an enormous, unprecedented tax increase will fall on American taxpayers starting on January 1, 2013.

3) High Gas Prices: Obama’s Half-Truths vs. Reality
By Nicolas Loris
February 23, 2012
Higher gas prices drive up production costs for goods reliant on transportation, and more money spent at the pump means less money spent at restaurants and movie theaters.

4) Federal Spending by the Numbers
By Alison Acosta Fraser
October 16, 2012
The federal government has closed out its fourth straight year of trillion-dollar-plus deficits, and the imperative to rein in spending has never been greater.

5) Red Tape Rising: Obama-Era Regulation at the Three-Year Mark
By James L. Gattuso and Diane Katz
March 13, 2012
During the first three years of the Obama Administration, 106 new major federal regulations added more than $46 billion per year in new costs for Americans.

6) The Ryan Budget: Confronting the Nation’s Spending Crisis
By Alison Acosta Fraser and Patrick Louis Knudsen
March 21, 2012
In the few months since Washington’s dramatic debt ceiling confrontation, America’s fiscal situation has only worsened. Federal spending is set to soar past previous record-shattering levels, endangering the economic future of the nation.

7) Auto Bailout or UAW Bailout? Taxpayer Losses Came from Subsidizing Union Compensation
By James Sherk and Todd Zywicki
June 13, 2012
The U.S. government will lose about $23 billion on the 2008-2009 bailout of General Motors and Chrysler. President Obama emphatically defends his decision to subsidize the automakers, arguing it was necessary to prevent massive job losses.

8) Government Employees Work Less than Private-Sector Employees
By Jason Richwine, Ph.D.
September 11, 2012
The stereotype of the under-worked government employee is frequently invoked in criticisms of public-sector employment. But does the average public employee really work less than the average private employee?

9) Tax Policy Center’s Skewed Analysis of Governor Romney’s Tax Plan
By Curtis Dubay
September 23, 2012
Their conclusion is the result of a series of carefully made choices. These choices, not the underlying nature of the Romney plan, cause them to arrive at their selected result. This finding is harming the debate on tax reform.

10) Welfare Reform’s Work Requirements Cannot be Waived
By Andrew M. Grossman
August 8, 2012
Under the guise of providing states greater “flexibility” in operating their welfare programs, the Obama Administration now claims the authority to weaken or waive the work requirements that are at the heart of welfare reform.

Heritage Foundation has done an excellent job out spelling out just how Obamacare is going to destroy the healthcare system of the United States which is considered the best in the world.  At the same time it is now beyond a doubt going to be the most expensive health care system in the world.  AND YES, it will indeed have the  Death Squads that the Republicans warned us all about where unelected  non-medically trained desk jerks have the power to tell us and our doctors what medical procedures we can have.  I have all  of the details here in this final article that Heritage termed the 12 dsays of Obamacare. I chose toi keep the individual articles until this last one and then leave it to you to educate yourself.  I have been actually sickened by the details of each article.   You can read them all and see for yourself.  Of course by electing Obama to a second term we Americans are stuck with this monster.  BB

 

12 Days of Obamacare Surprises: An Optional Medicaid Expansion

Alyene Senger

December 25, 2012 at 1:58 pm

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Not all surprises are good. When it comes to Obamacare, the original projections are turning into unfortunately different realities. For the past 11 days, Heritage has highlighted one of the various changes in Obamacare projections (e.g., cost, enrollment, etc.) from when the law first passed until now. This Christmas morning will be the last day in this blog series and will highlight a positiveObamacare surprise.

In 2014, Obamacare expands Medicaid eligibility to able-bodied, childless adults earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL). If a state chose not to expand, the federal government would stop funding their existing Medicaid programs. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that by 2016, Obamacare would drive an additional 17 million Americans into Medicaid.

Thankfully, the Supreme Court ruled that Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion was unconstitutionally coercive, ensuring state that chose not to expand would not lose existing federal assistance. Due to the Court’s ruling, the CBO now estimates that 6 million less Americans will be enrolled in the failing Medicaid program in 2022.

Surprise: While additional federal funding is available to those states that expand, the states will be burdened with the true cost. At least 20 states are planning to not expand or are unlikely to expand their Medicaid programs, according to Politico. The Supreme Court’s decision dealt a major blow to Obamacare and shifted a great deal of power to the states. This Christmas, in light of Obamacare’s many other mandates and requirements, this optional part of the law is certainly something to be thankful for.

12 Days of Obamacare Surprises:

11. Unlikely deficit reduction…

10. Unelected bureaucrats on IPAB…

9. Increased employer penalties…

8. More cuts to Medicare…

7. Loss of employer-sponsored insurance

6. A 50/50 split on enrollment estimates

5. More uninsured Americans

4. Increased exchange subsidies

3. Big tax increases

2. The small business tax credit

1. And the individual mandate.

Workers unions were once very necessary to get workers and their families a chance at a decent living. It was bad, very bad indeed for workers before the labor unions came into their own and gained some power during the 1930’s and 1940’s. My entire family were union people. But before he did in 1969 my Daddy told me that the unions had gone too far in their demands and would eventually kill themselves off. I believe this is happening now and it saddens me to see it. At the same time the illogical and greedy demands of these unions thru their Mafia bosses are hurting businesses and the public.

In my father’s case the incident the convinced him was in his words “a dammed stupid workplace rules’. Dad was a mechanic at Olin-Matheson Aluminum. One day a machine broke down and Dad was called in to fix it. He had to slip a piece of 2×4 under the machine to lift it up enough for him to replace the broken part. No big deal and the job would be done in less than 10 minutes allowing the machine to operate and all the workers on that machine to get back to production. But Dad was stopped by the union representative and told he couldn’t put that piece of wood under that machine, that was a carpenters job. So they had to call for a carpenter while everyone stood around doing nothing. The carpenter came decided what had to be done and then had to go get a block of wood ( this because as a carpenter he could not use the block of wood Dad carried in his tool box!). Altogether the machine was down for over an hour and losing the company money every minute of that time. All because the unions and union work rules had stopped using common sense and make unreasonable demands.

This week we saw the Hostess Company go bankrupt and close its doors and again much of it due to stupid union rules that made it difficult to continue to make a profit as a company altho they were selling their products well. The company could not however raise their prices enough to cover all the costs related to their union workers demands. It was the Baker’s Union that finally held out and forced the company’s bankruptcy but they were merely the last straw in a long list of stupidities. One stupidity was that Twinkies and Wonder Bread could not be transported in the same truck. Both were Hostess brands and both went to the same outlets but union rules stated that they could not be transported together. Then after arriving at the store the driver of the delivery truck could not unload the truck! As a result of all this the Hostess Company after 80+ years in business went bankrupt and 18,000 (that’s eighteen thousand) people lost their jobs, benefits and pensions!

Over this holiday we have seen on the news were the Service Employees International Union (The infamous SEIU run by Mafia boss and frequent visitor to the White House Trumpka makes well over $300,000 a year in union dues paid salary) were out in the purple t-shirts interrupting the free flow of traffic at airports across the country. They also intend to storm WalMart Stores across the country on Black Friday altho WalMart employees have repeatedly voted down union membership in a free and open secret ballot election. If the employees wanted the union it was a secret ballot and the employer would have no idea who had voted for the union so no one needed to be afraid of losing their jobs! Now of course with Obama in the White House another 4 years I have no doubt that the “bosses” will unionize WalMart because they will probably get the so-called Card Check ballot thru which means no secret ballot but merely having as few as a few dozen employees sign a card saying they want a union and the union will be in.

Then there are the Public Employees Unions! Even a die hard liberal like Franklin D. Roosevelt would not allow government employees to unionize. But President John F. Kennedy with a Presidential Order approved and allowed the public sector employees to unionize and our trouble as tax payers began. It was never ever a law passed by Congress and now Congress can stop it all by passing a law rescinding the Presidential Order but like the cities and states Congress has for these past 50 years continued to buy the government employees votes. And since Obama is the union president nothing is likely to change except to get worse!

 

Public or government workers are not like workers in the private sector.  Governments don’t go bankrupt and lay off workers so those who have government jobs are pretty secure.    Private companies must make a profit with the product they produce or they cant’t pay their workers.  governments simply raise taxes on the tax payers!  Private companies when negotiating with their workers have an incentive (profits) for keeping the benefits and wages reasonable in order to keep their company from going bankrupt.  Government workers negotiate with politicians who don’t care and just want to buy the employees vote.    Government workers voted for Obama overwhelmingly—-like the greedy sons don’t have kids who will have to pay for this extravagance!

We have all heard of California and New York and Illinois and cities all over the country that are going bankrupt because of employee pensions and benefits. These huge pensions and benefits have been given to the government workers by politicians who are simply buying the votes. Some states are pushing back on the public sector unions and there have been some wins for the tax payers. We all remember the teachers in Wisconsin invading and almost trashing the capitol building while Governor Walker and the Republicans fought thru legislation to stop collective bargaining which was bankrupting the state. (You may remember the Democrats legislators left the state rather than vote or allow a quorum so the Republicans could vote) You may also recall that the unions finally got thru a recall election on Governor Walker but he won that election with even more votes than he had gotten when first elected!

Anyhow, I have said my piece and now  Heritage has some thoughts and some facts about unions that you may find interesting and useful because as I said previously we should be prepared for more and more thuggery from the unions now that their president has another 4 years in office. BB

 

Should We Pay Government Employees More?

Federal employees—who work on average a month less than private-sector workers and get paid more—are lobbying for higher pay.

Government unions know that Congress is looking for ways to nip and tuck the federal budget, and they’re counting on being left out of the deal.

“The Federal-Postal Coalition—a group representing more than two dozen federal employee unions—pleaded with Congress on Monday to spare their members in any deal related to the ‘fiscal cliff,’” Government Executive reports.

Government unions went all out to re-elect the President—the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) spent more than any other outside group on Obama’s campaign. While only about seven out of 100 private-sector workers are unionized, in government, that number rises to 36 out of 100.

Now they’re complaining that they don’t get paid enough.

Federal employees and Members of Congress are working under a two-year “pay freeze,” though “individual employees still remain eligible for raises if they receive promotions, step increases or performance awards,” explains Government Executive.

Of course, these are employees who are paid by the taxpayers. So their compensation deserves every measure of scrutiny. Unfortunately, faulty comparisons to the private sector have been muddying the waters—something Heritage’s Jason Richwine and the American Enterprise Institute’s Andrew G. Biggs have been working to correct.

When Richwine and Biggs wrote in The Washington Post November 18 that government unions were using bogus numbers to push for raises, a firestorm of reader comments erupted. As of this morning, there were 2,480 comments on the piece.

One of the main issues: “The Federal Salary Council, an advisory body of academics and leaders of public employee unions, suggested last month that federal workers are underpaid by an average of 35 percent relative to nonfederal employees.”

What’s behind the huge gap the council is claiming? For starters, a huge omission: benefits packages. Richwine and Biggs note:

First, the pay agent doesn’t consider fringe benefits, even though benefits for federal workers are famously generous. In addition to a 401(k)-type pension with a handsome employer match, federal workers receive a traditional defined-benefit pension—for which they contribute less than 1 percent of salary—as well as retiree health coverage. A Congressional Budget Office study published in January found that the federal retirement package was 2.7 times more generous than what is paid by large private-sector firms. Federal workers also receive more paid vacation and sick days.

According to their own reporting, government employees work fewer hours than private-sector employees. To measure this in the fairest way possible, the American Time Use Survey allows workers to record all of their time, including any hours spent working from home or outside normal business hours. Using this data, Richwine found that government employees worked about one month less per year than private-sector workers.

And not only do they work less, they get paid more.

A January 2012 report by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) showed that federal government employees receive substantially higher compensation than similarly skilled workers in the private sector. The report’s methodology and conclusions were broadly similar to previous studies from both The Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute. Richwine, Biggs, and Heritage’s James Sherk concluded:

Federal compensation should be scaled back and reallocated to reward the most productive federal workers. The government should replace the seniority system with performance pay, paying higher salaries to good workers without guaranteeing raises for mediocre performers.

Government unions worked hard to re-elect President Obama, and now they’re expecting a payout at the expense of taxpayers. Any suggestion that their pay is below market levels is completely false.

>>> Watch Jason Richwine and Andrew Biggs discussing federal pay in yesterday’s Google Hangout on The Foundry.

Welfare growing and growing and going out of sight. According to the federal government budget office 15.7% of the national expenses  is now  Welfare.   As Bill O’Reilly said, “People like getting free stuff and will vote for anyone who promises them “free stuff”.  But as Margaret Thatcher once said that ‘The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money‘?  This will happen very quickly now in our United States with trillion dollar deficits growing and growing. It took our nation over 200 years to accumulate one half of our current national debt.  Obama added 5 trillion to our national debt in just 4 years and will totally bankrupt us as a nation in 8.   Just 4 years under Obama caused the welfare rolls to nearly double!   And as if that isn’t enough his administration is now advertising in MEXICO that immigrants in the United States are eligible for federal welfare programs and these programs are listed as well as how to get them. 53% of immigrants with children in this country get Welfare payments from the American tax payers.  If they list children they get extra payment for these children they have listed and some even list children living in Mexico and get payment for them.  These are facts People.  Check them out!      Eight years of  Evil to do what had taken 200 years to do before Obama.  Is there any wonder I cry for my country?

The following article gives some idea why and how welfare is so out of hand and perhaps why people voted for the man who is giving them “free stuff” at the expense of a nation that to this point has been the light of the world.  90% of Blacks and 70% of Hispanics voted for Obama—-I am not a racist and I am only a 2nd. generationj America  but these are the people who are benefiting most from this evil that is destroying our country and destroying the very people who most need to learn to stand on their own feet and prosper in the American way.  Welfare not only causes dependency but destroys the soul of those taking.  BB

Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs

It’s been a pretty big year for welfare—and a new report shows welfare is bigger than ever.

The Obama Administration turned a giant spotlight on the welfare system in July when the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proclaimed it had the authority to gut the work requirements from the welfare reform that had helped lift so many people out of poverty after 1996.

This morning, a new report by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) shows the staggering reality of the growing welfare state—echoing Heritage’s own research that reveals welfare spending is approaching the $1 trillion mark.

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Roughly 100 million people—one-third of the U.S. population—receive aid from at least one means-tested welfare program each month. Average benefits come to around $9,000 per recipient. If converted to cash, means-tested welfare spending is more than five times the amount needed to eliminate all poverty in the United States. (So just cut out the bureacracy and just send every one a check and instantly create 100 million millionaire!  BB)
Despite the fact that welfare spending was already at record levels when he took office, President Obama has increased federal means-tested welfare spending by more than a third. Benefits under “means-tested” programs are calculated based on a recipient’s means to support himself; in other words, they are intended to assist low-income Americans. The character of this aid is hand-out more than hand-up. Able-bodied recipients rarely are required to work or prepare for work to receive aid.

At the beginning of this year (2012), only four of the 80-plus federal welfare programs had work requirements; the Obama Administration has now suspended the work requirements in two of these. After the Obama Administration suspended the work requirement from the food stamp program in 2009, the number of people on food stamps doubled.

The more than 80 federal means-tested aid programs provide cash, food, housing, medical care, and social services to low-income people. Here’s how the spending breaks down:  (READ AND STUDY THESE CAREFULLY BECAUSE THIS IS THE BULLET THAT WILL KILL OUR NATION AND WHAT PEOPLE VOTED FOR WHEN THEY ELECTED OBAMA.  BB)

  • Federal: At $746 billion, federal means-tested spending exceeded spending on Medicare ($480 billion), Social Security ($725 billion), or the defense budget ($540 billion).
  • Combined: Overall means-tested welfare spending from federal and state sources reached from all sources reached $956 billion.

Some might argue that this is a reasonable, temporary response to the recession, but Obama seeks a permanent increase in the size of the welfare state.

According to the President’s budget plans for fiscal year 2013, means-tested welfare will not decline as the recession ends, but will continue to grow rapidly for the next decade. Overall, President Obama plans to spend $12.7 trillion on means-tested welfare over the next decade.

Welfare spending has long passed the amount spent on defense. In 1993, welfare spending exceeded defense spending for the first time since the Great Depression of the 1930s. In subsequent years, the ratio of welfare to defense spending averaged about $1.33 to $1. Obama’s spending plans would inflate this disparity: By 2022, there will be $2.33 in federal and state welfare spending for every $1 spent on national defense.

Needless to say—but we’ll say it anyway—Obama’s big spending plans will result in ruinous and unsustainable budget deficits. These deficits are, in part, the result of dramatic, permanent increases in means-tested welfare. An important step in reducing the federal deficit would be to return welfare spending to pre-recession levels.

Doubling the welfare rolls, handing out benefits without any work requirements, and spending twice as much on welfare as we spend on defense: This is Obama’s new normal.

(It has been said and it is so true that people get the government they deserve!  Ben Franklin told a lady when she asked what the Founding Fathers had given us and he told her they had given us a republic “if we could keep it”.  We did well for over 200 years and then in just 8 short years we will have lost it all.  You ask me why I have so little  hope for us as a nation, well maybe it is because I am old and have fought this battle all my life.  Maybe I should just go paint my pretty pictures and let younger more hopeful people take over the battle now.  I don’t know, but this old war horse  can’t seem to lay down the battle ax so I will just keep on crying to the brick walls I guess.  BB)

Americans elected him so now Americans can just suck up what is ahead for them.   Obama’s most destructive hit to our freedoms are in his administrations massive issuance of regulations.  The government  intends to control everything in your life and have made much headway during Obama s first term.  With nothing and no one to stop him these next four years he will put into effect regulations that will take decades to  overcome.  This following article from Heritage Institute explains a few laws that Obama has already broken where regulatory law is concerned.  We can look forward to many more instances of this kind.  Any other president would have been impeached for this type of behavior, but then this President can lie and cover-up and Americans just keep on loving him.  BB

Administration Ignores Law, Delays Exposing New Regulations

After three years of hyper-regulation, the Obama Administration has noticeably slowed its rulemaking in recent months. A variety of major rules have been parked in prolonged “review” by the White House, while the regulatory agenda required by statute has failed to materialize—twice. This flouting of the law is disturbing enough, but it’s made worse by the mounting regulatory uncertainty that has ensued.

Congress mandated a regulatory agenda from each agency in 1980, under the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The statute calls for release every April and October of a summary of all rules likely to have a “significant economic impact” on a substantial number of small firms. Subsequent executive orders extended the requirements to all regulations under development or review by some 60 departments, agencies, and commissions.

President Obama has ignored both the April 2012 and October 2012 agenda deadlines. The last agenda from the Administration, with 2,676 regulations, was published in fall 2011. The President’s neglect of the law contradicts his promise of an “unprecedented level of openness in government transparency.”  (AND, breaks the LAWS of the United States of America!  BB)

Notice of upcoming regulatory actions is an essential tool of government transparency and accountability. The agenda enables citizens to participate in the rulemaking process, businesses to plan, and Congress to engage in oversight. The stakes are especially high now because of the hundreds of rules yet to be finalized relating to the Dodd-Frank financial regulation statute and Obamacare.

The Administration has postponed action of late on some of its most ambitious regulations. For example, stricter standards on ozone emissions have been shelved until 2013. The original proposal by the Environmental Protection Agency would cost $90 billion or more annually and, potentially, jeopardize millions of jobs.  (Remember the Carbon Tax flak awhile back?  Go to my topics and read up on just what the Carbon Tax is and how Obama and friends will benefit from this and how We the People will pay thru the nose for our energy.  Even breathing the air will cost us!  BB)

Also on hold are various regulations to control power plant emissions of so-called greenhouse gases that would dramatically increase energy costs, as well as the designation of coal ash as a “hazardous substance”—estimated to cost $79 billion to $110 billion and thousands of jobs in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Missouri and Ohio.  (Obama’s war on coal in these states has caused thousands of job losses and dozens of coal fired power plants to close down:  all this costs you more  for your energy.  BB)

There is ample reason to believe that this recent “draw-back” of rulemaking portends a regulatory tsunami in the coming year. Of particular note is the large number of proposed regulations that are piling up at the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), the department within the Office of Management and Budget which reviews rules before they are published in the Federal Register.

According to OIRA data, a whopping 78 percent of the 151 regulations awaiting review have been pending at the office for more than 90 days—thus exceeding the maximum time allotted under executive order.

Among the most costly:

  • A Department of Transportation rule to require a rear-view camera and video    display for all new cars and trucks, at an estimated cost of up to $2.7 billion.
  • Revisions to the so-called Boiler MACT rules that impose stricter limits on industrial and commercial boilers and incinerators. The EPA pegged the cost of its original proposal at $9.5 billion, but independent analysts estimated the cost to be as much as $20 billion.
  • Energy conservation standards for walk-in coolers and freezers as well as commercial refrigeration, which would apply to virtually all equipment used in retail food stores. This is estimated by the Department of Energy to increase manufacturing costs by $500 million over four years.
  • Department of Labor restrictions on worker exposure to crystalline silica (fine particles of sand common to mining, manufacturing and construction). One analysis submitted to OIRA by engineering and economic consultants estimated compliance costs would be $5.5 billion annually, the loss of 17,000 “person-years” of employment, and $3.1 billion of economic output each year.

It would be good news for both the economy and consumers if the rulemaking delays are a result of more thorough cost analysis or consideration of regulatory alternatives. But there’s no indication that the Administration has embraced a newfound skepticism toward red tape. The evidence instead suggests that a multitude of major rules are simply awaiting release next year.

No one knows for certain, of course. But that very uncertainty is itself damaging to the economy. That is one important reason Congress requires the Administration to disclose its regulatory intentions in semi-annual agendas. President Obama should follow that law.

Read the full report: Obama’s Regulatory Agenda: Calm Before the Superstorm

It has been said and it is true that people get the government they deserve.  Republicans stayed away from the voting polls in droves this year of our Lord 2012 and we got another four years and at least 6 decades of evil.  BB

Most of you know that I have a big problem with farm bills that were started in the 1930’s to help what were then actual farmers.  Farmers:  people/families who own and farm their own land and make their living doing so.  NOT big agri-businesses!  One such agri-business is the sugar industry of Florida which has for decades controlled the price of sugar and kept prices artificially high.  Unfortunately the farm bills of today support not only the  huge conglomerates but  massive   variety of non-farm programs that also have gotten greatly out of hand.  The farm bills of the past 30 years have really had little to do with farming and helping farming and more to do with “pork”.  Subsidizing ethanol from corn has been one of the biggest recent programs that has hurt not helped the farmer and the American people and the 2012 Farm Bill continues this program and even expands even in light of it having been proven that ethanol requires more energy (provided by  oil and coal!) to  make  per gallon that energy it gives per gallon.  I could go on and on thru the Farm Bill programs and show how a good two thirds of the programs have been detrimental to the economy and  therefore We the People and yet our esteemed Senators passed the bill and our President wants the bill passed in the House.  Thank  Goodness for the Republican House.

Food Stamps is covered under the Farm Bill.  The most recent food stamp portion of the farm bill that passed the Democratic Senate now covers 47 million Americans.  To quote Heritage Foundation report, “ It is the second most expensive means-tested aid program, increasing from $19.8 billon in 2000 to $84.6 billion in 2011, and President Barack Obama has proposed a budget to keep food stamp spending at sharply elevated levels for the next decade. The national debt has topped $16 trillion and will continue to grow rapidly for the foreseeable future. ”   I highly recommend you read this report:http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2012/07/reforming-the-food-stamp-program      Obama in his drive to get people on the government dole has gutted the Clinton welfare reform act which required that Food Stamp and other welfare recipients work.  Yes, that’s what those nasty people did!; they actually required that people who get welfare like food stamps work.  Obama has changed that and now considered “bed-rest” as work, as well as carrying  out the trash and reading a good book.  This huge giveaway of our tax dollars passed the Democrat controlled Senate but the Republican House is refusing to even consider the Senate version of the bill.  Heritage for Action is needing your help to squash this program.  Read and learn and then act.  BB

Massive Farm and Food Stamp Bill
Brenda,For the first time in 50 years, it appears the U.S. House will not take up a farm and food stamp bill passed out of committee – and that is a very good thing!Much like the bill passed by the Senate, the House’s farm and food stamp bill will cost taxpayers nearly $1 trillion over the next decade. How can a farm and food stamp bill cost $1 trillion? Because it funnels subsidies to some agriculture interests and throws cash at unreformed welfare programs like food stamps.>> Learn why the bill is a mammoth waste for taxpayers.

Conservatives – including many principled lawmakers in the House – are taking a stand against this “Soviet-style” bill, in the words of Speaker John Boehner. It’s nothing more than an attack on free enterprise and personal liberty. However, some are now using this summer’s ongoing drought as an excuse to push a five-year farm and food stamp bill through the House. It’s typical Washington – using a “crisis” to expand government and take advantage of the taxpayer.

>> Farm Bill Will Not Solve the Drought

Despite the massive special-interest push to pass the farm and food stamp bill – special interest groups spent more than $173 million to lobbying Congress on the 2008 bill – the ground is fertile for change. The more conservatives know about the farm and food stamp bill, the more likely it is we can prevent yet another trillion dollar boondoggle.Sincerely,

Michael A. Needham
Chief Executive Officer
Heritage Action for America


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