• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every persons position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

Excessive Regulations Bind Everyone Down

LowDown

Curmudgeon
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
14,185
Reaction score
8,767
Location
Houston
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Conservatives frequently complain about the multiplication of regulations on private businesses. The metrics on this are rather startling. In the 1950's a small business starting up had hardly any contact with the federal government at all. The need to file income taxes was about the only thing, plus some regulations on alcohol, tobacco, firearms, guns, and explosives that applied to only a few businesses. These days small businesses deal with federal government filing requirements and fees almost daily. The threat of audits from the IRS, OSHA, the ATF, EPA, and on and on looms constantly. Hundreds of hours, thousands of dollars, and hundreds of pages of forms are involved. It goes without saying that business people therefore must devote less of their time and effort serving their customers.

But what few people outside of government realize that the excessive regulation is something that government agencies also impose on themselves and each other. More and more clerical time, computer time, and money is being devoted to the government monitoring itself. The result is that less and less time is spent actually serving the people.

A brief example: In the 1970s, clinical researchers at VA hospitals were pretty much left to themselves in terms of fulfilling safety requirments and record keeping. Nowdays there are 7 agencies involved in making sure the researchers do everything right. Again, hundreds of forms have to be filled out and hundreds of hours are consumed in this effort which reduces research output accordingly. The number of people involved in these monitoring efforts goes up as well. Dozens of people at each VA medical center spend their time going in bureaucratic circles while a smaller proportion of people actually directly take care of veterans.

The only positive consequence of all this is that more middle class people can find nice government jobs doing this regulatory work, and that does in fact seem to be the main purpose of it.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
More rubbish. What's the cost of not regulating?
 

Neomalthusian

DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
10,234
Reaction score
2,993
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
More rubbish. What's the cost of not regulating?

Cost to whom of not regulating what? Could you be any more vague? Maybe you could ask the philosophical contemplation-starter, "What is?"

Your sweeping question indicates you think any regulation is intrinsically good, effective, and smart.
 

Threegoofs

COVID survivor
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Joined
Mar 31, 2013
Messages
53,359
Reaction score
19,449
Location
The birthplace of Italian Beef
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
So how come by any measurement you can think of, GDP, wealth, income, pollution, education, gender and race equality, health, etc, we are VASTLY better off now than in the 50s?

Maybe you can make a case that regulation has been awesome for society...
 

Neomalthusian

DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
10,234
Reaction score
2,993
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
So how come by any measurement you can think of, GDP, wealth, income, pollution, education, gender and race equality, health, etc, we are VASTLY better off now than in the 50s?

Maybe you can make a case that regulation has been awesome for society...

Especially if you don't know the difference between correlation and causation...


Anyway, my agreement with the OP is contained in a quote I posted in another thread just several minutes ago:

"The poor suffer the worst when their very poverty is both perpetuated by the welfare state and deepened by the hidden transfers from the powerless to the powerful caused by protectionism, licensing, and other restrictions on labor market freedom that the powerful and educated create at the expense of the voiceless and disempowered.” -Tom Palmer
 

PirateMk1

Resident Martian ;)
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2012
Messages
16,901
Reaction score
8,098
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Private
More rubbish. What's the cost of not regulating?

Less than the cost of regulating. Further the regulations are actually hindering the court system to reign in bad actors.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Cost to whom of not regulating what? Could you be any more vague? Maybe you could ask the philosophical contemplation-starter, "What is?"

Your sweeping question indicates you think any regulation is intrinsically good, effective, and smart.

It's no more sweeping than the idiotic OP.

Regulation happens because somebody complains, somebody gets hurt, or somebody losses money. It then goes through a very rigorous procedure of proposing various solutions (including no regulation), getting public input through hearings, publishing proposed regulations (in the Federal Register for federal regs), and then subjecting the regulations to court challenges.

What's the cost of not having traffic lights? You can't just say traffic lights cost money and leave it at that. But that's the intellectual dishonesty of right for you.

In short the OP is pure dreck.
 

Verax

Disappointed in Trump
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 26, 2011
Messages
12,240
Reaction score
4,519
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Why not make a case about specific regulations that are too onerous and suggest a better method then drum up support to have it changed?

This vague "regulations are bad" is pointless. Some are bad, some are good, some its a tough call. We should focus on fixing the worst crap first.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Less than the cost of regulating. Further the regulations are actually hindering the court system to reign in bad actors.

Boy is this stupid.

So regulating pollution cost less than allowing corporations to externalize cost through making people sick, and the lawsuits that follow.

Jesus man, they actually do cost/benefit analyses for proposed regs. Your troglodyte views of regulation are silly..

This is why nobody takes conservatives seriously.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Why not make a case about specific regulations that are too onerous and suggest a better method then drum up support to have it changed?

This vague "regulations are bad" is pointless. Some are bad, some are good, some its a tough call. We should focus on fixing the worst crap first.

And that's why we have a very rigorous procedure including a cost benefit analysis and public input in any major new regulation.

But that's not the purpose of the OP. It's just agitprop. A vapid attempt to claim the regulation is bad in generally so that the cost can be externalized from business to consumers and workers. That's the real agenda of the anti-regulation meme.
 

Threegoofs

COVID survivor
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Joined
Mar 31, 2013
Messages
53,359
Reaction score
19,449
Location
The birthplace of Italian Beef
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
Especially if you don't know the difference between correlation and causation...

I am quite familiar with correlation and causation, sir.

The OP was alluding to the fact that regulation is impeding economic growth. Given out excellent economic growth on the last 50 years, it seems like trading all the benefits of regulation for somewhat higher growth would lead us to become a much poorer nation in everything but material wealth.

I guess we could all afford that nice gas mask we all would need.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Especially if you don't know the difference between correlation and causation...


Anyway, my agreement with the OP is contained in a quote I posted in another thread just several minutes ago:

"The poor suffer the worst when their very poverty is both perpetuated by the welfare state and deepened by the hidden transfers from the powerless to the powerful caused by protectionism, licensing, and other restrictions on labor market freedom that the powerful and educated create at the expense of the voiceless and disempowered.” -Tom Palmer

The analysis is meaningless unless you calculate the cost of NOT regulating. What is the cost of not banning certain pollutants, or not requiring certain building standards, of not preventing certain food processing practices, of not having traffic lights?

The cost are in fact enormous. We know that because we used to pay them before regulation. And by we I mean consumers and workers since the costs were externalized for the most part, which is the real agenda here.

So the OP is totally dishonest. What's new?
 

Neomalthusian

DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
10,234
Reaction score
2,993
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
It's no more sweeping than the idiotic OP.

Regulation happens because somebody complains, somebody gets hurt, or somebody losses money. It then goes through a very rigorous procedure of proposing various solutions (including no regulation), getting public input through hearings, publishing proposed regulations (in the Federal Register for federal regs), and then subjecting the regulations to court challenges.

What's the cost of not having traffic lights? You can't just say traffic lights cost money and leave it at that. But that's the intellectual dishonesty of right for you.

That's why I asked what type of regulation you were asking about. You choose traffic lights as an example? Okay, well, that's a safe choice, considering the reason for regulating traffic is probably one of the more obvious. But there are literally countless regulations out there.

Let's pretend for a second there are 100,000 different regulations of various kinds, and only 10% of them were really of any importance. That would mean that you could find TEN THOUSAND worthwhile regulations out there! Wow! And to name them all would make it seem like regulations are, across the board, good.

Except there are still those other 90,000 regulations that aren't, whose burden well exceeds their benefit.

Even as a libertarian I will defend the usefulness of some regulations. But I will also admit that some regulations are unnecessary. Just because a problem comes up or an abuse occurs does not mean that a federal regulation needs to be created over it. Wouldn't you agree with that?
 

Neomalthusian

DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
10,234
Reaction score
2,993
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
The analysis is meaningless unless you calculate the cost of NOT regulating. What is the cost of not banning certain pollutants, or not requiring certain building standards, of not preventing certain food processing practices, of not having traffic lights?

The cost are in fact enormous. We know that because we used to pay them before regulation. And by we I mean consumers and workers since the costs were externalized for the most part, which is the real agenda here.

So the OP is totally dishonest. What's new?

Have you ever worked a job where you had 5 different bosses? All of them were your bosses and none of them communicated with each other and each had a slightly different take on what your job was?

I'm guessing not, and do you know why? Because it doesn't ****ing work well at all, so most organizations don't do it that way.

Yet there are many businesses, including non-profits, who answer to multiple regulatory agencies, each of whom has a different set of standards for the same damn thing. This doesn't work well either. It means those organizations end up employing people for the specific purpose of trying to analyze and reconcile the litany of different regulations, and their discrepancies, that they have to uphold all at the very same time. My organization is audited by no fewer than three different regulatory bodies each year. That means no less than every 4 months we have some visitor from out of town analyzing everything we do according to a different set of standards. If we "violate" their rules, we pay for it dearly, and it is so financially hazardous to operate our business that we have to budget in the salaries of experts who can track just the regulations. These are people who contribute zero to the actual business we're in. Their sole purpose is to help the agency survive the regulatory onslaught.
 

PirateMk1

Resident Martian ;)
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2012
Messages
16,901
Reaction score
8,098
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Private
Boy is this stupid.

So regulating pollution cost less than allowing corporations to externalize cost through making people sick, and the lawsuits that follow.

Jesus man, they actually do cost/benefit analyses for proposed regs. Your troglodyte views of regulation are silly..

This is why nobody takes conservatives seriously.

How did you determine I am supposedly a conservative? I haven't ever stated what I am in the spectrum of political lean.

Secondly the whole point of the court system is SELF regulation. If you are damaged and can prove it then you get made whole monetarily and the perp is lighter in the wallet which is a very good incentive for them to fly right. If they do it again then they get hit even harder until they are out of business. Further other business if they are smart look and change their practices. Its not perfect by far. But its FAR less onerous than what system we have now. I am in the trucking and logistics industry. My industry believe it or not is MORE regulated then the NUCLEAR industry or the airline industry. It costs me a very large portion of my profit and much more importantly TIME to comply with regulations. This does NOT include accounting and taxes this is JUST my regulatory burden. I run would run my company safely regardless of the regulations, because it is less expensive in the long run and I make more money more efficiently. The regulatory detracts from the time and capital I would otherwise spend improving my business and thereby generating MORE taxable revenue.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
That's why I asked what type of regulation you were asking about. You choose traffic lights as an example? Okay, well, that's a safe choice, considering the reason for regulating traffic is probably one of the more obvious. But there are literally countless regulations out there.

Let's pretend for a second there are 100,000 different regulations of various kinds, and only 10% of them were really of any importance. That would mean that you could find TEN THOUSAND worthwhile regulations out there! Wow! And to name them all would make it seem like regulations are, across the board, good.

Except there are still those other 90,000 regulations that aren't, whose burden well exceeds their benefit.

Even as a libertarian I will defend the usefulness of some regulations. But I will also admit that some regulations are unnecessary. Just because a problem comes up or an abuse occurs does not mean that a federal regulation needs to be created over it. Wouldn't you agree with that?

Pssst: the OP made the weird generalization. I don't need to fix it by being particular.

As to unnecessary regulation, I'm not quite sure what your point is. We have a procedure (a very rigorous procedure) for imposing regulations whose benefits outweigh burdens and fairly allocate them. That fact that the procedure isn't perfect, tells us nothing since no procedure is perfect. I doubt you can propose a better procedure that would effectively reach the goals of (a) solving problems we want solved; (b) accurately calculating costs and benefits; and (c) fairly allocating the burdens.

If you have such a procedure, propose it. Still, that has nothing to do with the OP, which is just more rightwing agitprop.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
How did you determine I am supposedly a conservative? I haven't ever stated what I am in the spectrum of political lean.

Secondly the whole point of the court system is SELF regulation. If you are damaged and can prove it then you get made whole monetarily and the perp is lighter in the wallet which is a very good incentive for them to fly right. If they do it again then they get hit even harder until they are out of business. Further other business if they are smart look and change their practices. Its not perfect by far. But its FAR less onerous than what system we have now. I am in the trucking and logistics industry. My industry believe it or not is MORE regulated then the NUCLEAR industry or the airline industry. It costs me a very large portion of my profit and much more importantly TIME to comply with regulations. This does NOT include accounting and taxes this is JUST my regulatory burden. I run would run my company safely regardless of the regulations, because it is less expensive in the long run and I make more money more efficiently. The regulatory detracts from the time and capital I would otherwise spend improving my business and thereby generating MORE taxable revenue.

We tried that. It failed. Next issue.
 

head of joaquin

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
12,029
Reaction score
3,530
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Have you ever worked a job where you had 5 different bosses? All of them were your bosses and none of them communicated with each other and each had a slightly different take on what your job was?

I'm guessing not, and do you know why? Because it doesn't ****ing work well at all, so most organizations don't do it that way.

Yet there are many businesses, including non-profits, who answer to multiple regulatory agencies, each of whom has a different set of standards for the same damn thing. This doesn't work well either. It means those organizations end up employing people for the specific purpose of trying to analyze and reconcile the litany of different regulations, and their discrepancies, that they have to uphold all at the very same time. My organization is audited by no fewer than three different regulatory bodies each year. That means no less than every 4 months we have some visitor from out of town analyzing everything we do according to a different set of standards. If we "violate" their rules, we pay for it dearly, and it is so financially hazardous to operate our business that we have to budget in the salaries of experts who can track just the regulations. These are people who contribute zero to the actual business we're in. Their sole purpose is to help the agency survive the regulatory onslaught.

Agitprop.

If you can propose a better more rational PROCEDURE, then pony up. I'm betting you can't. All you can do is make unsupported claims about evil regulators concocting problems for you.

But here's a concept that you might actually want to think about: no regulation in our system is proposed unless somebody COMPLAINS. Somebody gets hurt, somebody losses money, somebody is inconvenienced. They complain and the system kicks in.

Sounds like you just want people to shut up and take it when businesses harm them. Sorry, it ain't going to happen.
 

Neomalthusian

DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
10,234
Reaction score
2,993
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
Pssst: the OP made the weird generalization. I don't need to fix it by being particular.

As to unnecessary regulation, I'm not quite sure what your point is. We have a procedure (a very rigorous procedure) for imposing regulations whose benefits outweigh burdens and fairly allocate them. That fact that the procedure isn't perfect, tells us nothing since no procedure is perfect. I doubt you can propose a better procedure that would effectively reach the goals of (a) solving problems we want solved; (b) accurately calculating costs and benefits; and (c) fairly allocating the burdens.

If you have such a procedure, propose it. Still, that has nothing to do with the OP, which is just more rightwing agitprop.

It really depends on the industry and I'm really only qualified to speak about my own, because that's what I know. I can't speak in broad strokes about all regulation in all industries and come up with a magic procedure that weeds out unnecessary and redundant regulatory burdens because there is no all-encompassing procedure.

For my own industry, because we answer to these three different regulatory bodies, and because they're the experts on their own rule books, they should get together and combine their regulatory requirements into a single set that will produce one set of regs and one audit per year for our company and the countless other companies like ours across our state. Rather than having us all answering to a bunch of different bosses who are oblivious to the existence of the other.

I guarantee you that, even though I fully acknowledge the appropriateness of some regulations, that there are numerous others whose imposition on the business is epitomized by the following cartoon:

big-government-cartoon.jpg
 
Last edited:

Neomalthusian

DP Veteran
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
10,234
Reaction score
2,993
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
But here's a concept that you might actually want to think about: no regulation in our system is proposed unless somebody COMPLAINS. Somebody gets hurt, somebody losses money, somebody is inconvenienced. They complain and the system kicks in.

So you're saying a regulation should be created every time someone complains?

Hey random question. Would you be interested in playing a game that had three different 400-page rule books that contradicted one another? Does that sound like fun?

Sounds like you just want people to shut up and take it when businesses harm them. Sorry, it ain't going to happen.

Of course not. All I'm saying is that some matters are best left to the civil and criminal justice system. A bill doesn't need to be introduced every damned time someone complains.
 
Top Bottom