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Obama' Regulatory State: TAX, BORROW, REGULATE

Obama' Regulatory State: TAX, BORROW, REGULATE

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Published by Levitator
President Barack Obama’s new federal budget proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2012 seeks $3.729 trillion in discretionary, entitlement, and interest spending.1 In the previous fiscal year, the president had proposed outlays of $3.83 trillion. As of January 2011, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) now projects FY 2011 spending will end up at $3.708 trillion.

For reference, President George W. Bush proposed not only the first-ever $3-trillion U.S. budget, but also the first $2-trillion federal budget—in 2002, only nine years ago.

The result: Thanks to the bailouts and other amplified spending, CBO projects a FY 2011 deficit of a previously unthinkable $1.48 trillion, greater than FY 2010’s actual deficit of $1.294 trillion.4 With the unveiling of the 2012 budget, President Obama projects an even larger FY 2011 deficit than CBO does: $1.645 trillion. This figure will be the largest deficit since World War II, at 11 percent of the entire U.S. economy.

To be sure, many other countries’ governments consume a greater share of their national output than the U.S. government does. However, in absolute terms, the U.S. government is the largest government on planet Earth, whether one’s metric is revenues, expenditures, deficits, or accumulated debt.

Those costs fully convey the federal government’s on-budget scope, and they are sobering enough. Yet the government’s reach extends well beyond the taxes that Washington collects and the deficit spending and borrowing now surging. Federal environmental, safety and health, and economic regulations cost hundreds of billions—perhaps trillions—of dollars every year over and above the costs of the official federal outlays that now dominate the policy debate.

Economics 101 explains how and why firms generally pass along to consumers the costs of some taxes. Likewise, some regulatory compliance costs that businesses face will find their way into the prices consumers pay. Precise regulatory costs can never be fully known, because, unlike taxes, they are unbudgeted and often indirect. But scattered government and private data exist on scores of regulations and on the agencies that issue them, as well as on regulatory costs and benefits. Compiling some of that information can make the regulatory state somewhat more comprehensible. That is one purpose of the annual Ten Thousand Commandments report.
http://cei.org/10kc
President Barack Obama’s new federal budget proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2012 seeks $3.729 trillion in discretionary, entitlement, and interest spending.1 In the previous fiscal year, the president had proposed outlays of $3.83 trillion. As of January 2011, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) now projects FY 2011 spending will end up at $3.708 trillion.

For reference, President George W. Bush proposed not only the first-ever $3-trillion U.S. budget, but also the first $2-trillion federal budget—in 2002, only nine years ago.

The result: Thanks to the bailouts and other amplified spending, CBO projects a FY 2011 deficit of a previously unthinkable $1.48 trillion, greater than FY 2010’s actual deficit of $1.294 trillion.4 With the unveiling of the 2012 budget, President Obama projects an even larger FY 2011 deficit than CBO does: $1.645 trillion. This figure will be the largest deficit since World War II, at 11 percent of the entire U.S. economy.

To be sure, many other countries’ governments consume a greater share of their national output than the U.S. government does. However, in absolute terms, the U.S. government is the largest government on planet Earth, whether one’s metric is revenues, expenditures, deficits, or accumulated debt.

Those costs fully convey the federal government’s on-budget scope, and they are sobering enough. Yet the government’s reach extends well beyond the taxes that Washington collects and the deficit spending and borrowing now surging. Federal environmental, safety and health, and economic regulations cost hundreds of billions—perhaps trillions—of dollars every year over and above the costs of the official federal outlays that now dominate the policy debate.

Economics 101 explains how and why firms generally pass along to consumers the costs of some taxes. Likewise, some regulatory compliance costs that businesses face will find their way into the prices consumers pay. Precise regulatory costs can never be fully known, because, unlike taxes, they are unbudgeted and often indirect. But scattered government and private data exist on scores of regulations and on the agencies that issue them, as well as on regulatory costs and benefits. Compiling some of that information can make the regulatory state somewhat more comprehensible. That is one purpose of the annual Ten Thousand Commandments report.
http://cei.org/10kc

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Published by: Levitator on Jun 23, 2011
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Ten ThousandCommandmentsTen ThousandCommandments
 An Annual Snapshot of the Federal Regulatory State An Annual Snapshot of the Federal Regulatory State
by Clyde Wayne Crews Jr.by Clyde Wayne Crews Jr.
Competitive Enterprise InstituteCompetitive Enterprise Institute
 
Crews:
Ten Thousand Commandments 2011
1
President Barack Obama’s new federal bud-get proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2012 seeks$3.729 trillion in discretionary, entitlement,and interest spending.
1
In the previous fiscalyear, the president had proposed outlays of $3.83 trillion. As of January 2011, the Con-gressional Budget Office (CBO) now proj-ects FY 2011 spending will end up at $3.708trillion.
2
For reference, President George W. Bushproposed not only the first-ever $3-trillionU.S. budget, but also the first $2-trillion fed-eral budget—in 2002, only nine years ago.
3
 The result: Thanks to the bailouts and otheramplified spending, CBO projects a FY 2011 deficit of a previously unthinkable$1.48 trillion,
 
greater than FY 2010’s actualdeficit of $1.294 trillion.
4
With the unveil-ing of the 2012 budget, President Obamaprojects an even larger FY 2011 deficit thanCBO does: $1.645 trillion. This figure willbe the largest deficit since World War II, at11 percent of the entire U.S. economy.
5
To be sure, many other countries’ govern-ments consume a greater share of their na-tional output than the U.S. governmentdoes.
6
However, in absolute terms, the U.S.government is the largest government onplanet Earth, whether one’s metric is rev-enues, expenditures, deficits, or accumulateddebt.
7
 
Regulation: A Hidden Tax
Those costs fully convey the federal govern-ment’s on-budget scope, and they are sober-ing enough. Yet the government’s reach ex-tends well beyond the taxes that Washingtoncollects and the deficit spending and bor-rowing now surging. Federal environmental,safety and health, and economic regulationscost hundreds of billions—perhaps tril-lions—of dollars every year over and abovethe costs of the official federal outlays thatnow dominate the policy debate.Economics 101 explains how and why firmsgenerally pass along to consumers the costsof some taxes. Likewise, some regulatory 
Ten Thousand Commandments
An Annual Snapshotof the Federal Regulatory State
2011 Editionby Clyde Wayne Crews Jr.
Executive Summary
In absoluteterms, the U.S. government is the largest  government onplanet Earth.
 
2Crews:
Ten Thousand Commandments 2011
compliance costs that businesses face willfind their way into the prices consumerspay. Precise regulatory costs can never befully known, because, unlike taxes, they areunbudgeted and often indirect. But scat-tered government and private data existon scores of regulations and on the agen-cies that issue them, as well as on regula-tory costs and benefits. Compiling some of that information can make the regulatory state somewhat more comprehensible. Thatis one purpose of the annual
Ten Thousand Commandments 
report, highlights of whichappear next.
•
 An evaluation of the U.S. federal regula-tory enterprise by economists Nicole V.Crain and W. Mark Crain finds annualregulatory compliance costs hit $1.752trillion in 2008.
•
Given 2010’s actual government spend-ing or outlays of $3.456 trillion, theregulatory “hidden tax” stands at anunprecedented 50.7 percent of the levelof federal spending itself.
•
The dramatic reality that regulationsand deficits now 
each
greatly exceed$1 trillion a year is an unsettling new development for the United States.
 
In2008, regulatory costs were more thandouble that year’s $459 billion budgetdeficit. However, the deficit spendingsurge to more than $1 trillion since2009 has catapulted the deficit to a levelapproaching the costs of regulation.
•
Government spending’s relationship togovernment regulation bears scrutiny.Unchecked government outlays anddeficit spending translate, in lateryears, into greater regulation as well. We are seeing that expansion happennow.
•
Regulatory costs exceed all 2008 corpo-rate pretax profits of $1.463 trillion.
•
Regulatory costs dwarf corporate incometaxes of $157 billion.
•
Regulatory costs tower over the estimat-ed 2010 individual income taxes of $936billion by 87 percent—nearly double thelevel.
•
Regulatory costs of $1.752 trillionabsorb 11.9 percent of the U.S. grossdomestic product (GDP), estimated at$14.649 trillion in 2010.
•
Combining regulatory costs with federalFY 2010 outlays of $3.456 trillion re-veals a federal government whose shareof the entire economy now reaches 35.5percent.
•
The Weidenbaum Center at WashingtonUniversity in St. Louis and the Regulato-ry Studies Center at George WashingtonUniversity in Washington, D.C., jointly estimate that agencies spent $55.4 bil-lion (on budget) to administer and po-lice the regulatory enterprise. Adding the$1.752 trillion in off-budget compliancecosts brings the total regulatory burdento $1.8 trillion.
•
The 2010
Federal Register 
stands at anall-time record-high 81,405 pages.
•
Federal Register 
pages devoted specifically to final rules rose by 20 percent, from20,782 in 2009 to 24,914.
•
In 2010, agencies issued 3,573 finalrules, compared with 3,503 in 2009.
•
Notably, the number of proposed rulesincreased even more than the number of final rules, from 2,044 in 2009 to 2,439in 2010, an increase of 19.3 percent.
•
The annual outflow of roughly 4,000final rules has meant that nearly 38,700rules have been issued since 2001.
 
•
 While regulatory agencies issued 3,573final rules in 2010, Congress passed andthe president signed into law a compara-tively few 217 bills. Considerable law-making power is delegated to unelectedbureaucrats at agencies.
•
 According to the 2010
 
“Regulatory Plan and the Unified Agenda of FederalRegulatory and Deregulatory Actionsin the
Federal Register,
which lists federalregulatory actions at various stages of implementation, 58 federal departments,agencies, and commissions have 4,225regulations in play at various stagesof implementation, an increase of 
 
4.5percent.
•
Of the 4,225 regulations now in thepipeline, 224 are “economically signifi-cant” rules wielding at least $100 millionin economic impact. Assuming thoserulemakings are primarily regulatory 
Unchecked  government outlays and 
decit spending 
translate, in later  years, into greater regulation as well.We are seeing that expansion happennow.

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