Earlier today, Alien wrote a great piece about one of Trump’s purported great accomplishments – cutting regulations.
Ask any Trump supporter and they will include this as one of the reasons that they believe he’s doing great and one of the best Republican Presidents ever.
However, as with every “accomplishment” Trump claims and sycophants rave about, cutting regulations is mostly hype and little substance.
Alien described how simply cutting a lot of little regulations does not reduce the total if you add one big one of equal or greater weight. He also gave a great example of how the Trump Administration is actually threatening to decrease our liberties with new regulations with the threats from Trump’s FDA against the vaping industry.
Alien’s article got me thinking about Trump’s claims about reducing regulations even more, so I’d like to piggy-back onto his earlier editorial on the subject.
Specifically, I’d like to concentrate on the first point that Alien made about claiming to cut a lot of regulations, only to add one big new one that may outweigh the total of the little ones.
According to Trump’s Presidential Executive Order on Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs:
Sec. 2. Regulatory Cap for Fiscal Year 2017. (a) Unless prohibited by law, whenever an executive department or agency (agency) publicly proposes for notice and comment or otherwise promulgates a new regulation, it shall identify at least two existing regulations to be repealed.Whitehouse.gov
The trick here (aka how they fool gullible people) is to identify two old, obsolete (or that you just don’t like) regulations to repeal, while adding one new one. Sure, total number of regulations decreases on the books, but the effect is likely very little, especially when considering the next part of the EO:
(b) For fiscal year 2017, which is in progress, the heads of all agencies are directed that the total incremental cost of all new regulations, including repealed regulations, to be finalized this year shall be no greater than zero, unless otherwise required by law or consistent with advice provided in writing by the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (Director).Whitehouse.gov
(c) In furtherance of the requirement of subsection (a) of this section, any new incremental costs associated with new regulations shall, to the extent permitted by law, be offset by the elimination of existing costs associated with at least two prior regulations. Any agency eliminating existing costs associated with prior regulations under this subsection shall do so in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act and other applicable law.
This is saying that if I want to add a new regulation that will cost $100 million, then I have to find two existing regulations to repeal that together cost $100 million.
The result…no reduction in costs. In other words, no change.
All he does here is eliminate regulations that prior administrations created that he doesn’t like and replaces them with regulations that he does like. They use the number of regulations as a measure of “cutting regulations” rather than the costs of the regulations in order to be able to make the big, hyped-up claim (over and over and over again) that he is cutting regulations…he’s the GREATEST regulation cutting President in the history of mankind.
And his supporters cheer.
But like all things Trump claims, it’s all bullshit.