Posted tagged ‘Government Regulations’

Must Reads For The Week 10/1/16

September 30, 2016

Krugman: Obamacare Is Starting To Unravel, at economicpolicyjournal.com. Obamacare is working exactly as planned. It was the next step toward a single payer Government run system.

Doctors Drowning In Flood Of Obamacare Regulations: Cleveland Clinic CEO, at cnbc.com. Cleveland Clinic CEO Dr. Toby Cosgrove said, “The regulation paperwork comes in the form of a 7-foot-tall stack of 16,000 pages.

Feds Force Michigan Cherries To Rot – In order To Raise Prices, at michigancapitalconfidential.com. Who says government bureaucrats don’t understand economics. Constricting supply raises the price. FDR mandated these type of edicts during the great depression. Pigs were killed and buried in pits so the price of pork would remain high (read here), even though people were starving. Central planning isn’t easy!

Sweden Creates 55 “No-Go Zones” As It Loses Control Of Refugee Crisis, at zerohedge.com. The Refugees are trying to implement Shira law and they are succeeding. Police have given up trying to control the violence in the No-Go zones. What’s happening in Europe can’t happen here, can it?

France’s New Sharia Police, at zerohedge.com. If immigrants don’t assimilate into the existing culture, the existing culture will be taken over. This can’t happen here?

In Most States, First-Generation Immigrants Receive More In Government Services Than They Pay In Taxes, at economicpolicyjournal.com. You can’t have open borders and a welfare state. It incentivizes the wrong kind of people to come to America. We need people who want to produce. We don’t need anymore people who want to consume without any corresponding production (welfare recipients).

Confessed Mall Gunman, A Non-Citizen, Voted In 3 Elections In Wa., at tammybruce.com. Do we want non-citizens voting? Democrats do.

FBI Investigating More Dead People Voting In Key Swing State Of Virginia, at zerohedge.com. Do you trust the FBI in the wake of the investigation of Hillary? There is no way the FBI will find voter fraud in a state where Clinton crony Terry McAuliffe is the Governor.

Who Really Lost This Weeks Presidential Debate? America Did, at zerohedge.com. America is an ideal where the individual is sovereign and the government is subordinate. Hillary and Trump are for bigger government. The bigger the government the smaller the individual. The debate was between big Government and bigger Government. America lost.

Are The “Invisible Americans” The Key Players In This Election?, by Charles Hugh Smith, at oftowminds.com. Excerpt from the article: “The gulf between reality and the official happy story of “recovery” spewed by the status quo’s well-paid army of apparatchiks, flunkies, flacks, hacks, toadies, lackeys and functionaries gorging at the trough of the status quo is widening to the point of surrealism. Memo to the D.C. Beltway/mainstream media apologists and propagandists: the 25 million Invisible Americans are no longer buying your shuck-and-jive con job.” This article has great analysis by CHS.

Let’s Take A Break From All This B.S.

Ryder Cup Heckler Has To Put Up Of Shut Up. He Makes Putt He Said He Could Make.

The European Ryder cup guys were great. I like how Dave Johnson didn’t want to take the $100 dollar bill from Justin Rose that Rose put on the green next to the ball before Johnson hit the putt.

Drone Captures Northern Lights Over Iceland

 

Government Intervention Stifles Real Job Creation

August 18, 2015

Can government create a job? Yes! Government can create millions of jobs. They could outlaw farming equipment tomorrow which would immediately create millions of farming jobs. But would these new farming jobs be productive jobs?

Government jobs by definition aren’t productive jobs. Does a government job produce more than the cost of the labor? The only way to find this out would be to compete in the market and discover what the price of labor would be according to the law of supply and demand.

High school teaching jobs are examples of jobs that are both free market jobs (private school teachers) and government jobs (public school teachers). What do I mean by this? A private school teacher gets paid considerably less in wages, benefits, and retirement, than a public school teacher. A private school has to provide a quality service at a price that individuals value more than the money they  freely exchange for that service. If they can’t, they will go out of business. A public school has no such incentive to provide quality at a lower price. They receive ever-increasing revenue through local tax levies and state and federal funding. Because of this, teachers unions procure ever-increasing wages and benefits for their teachers who provide a lower quality service. People’s next best alternative,  private schools or home schooling, are considerably more expensive, which is why it is difficult to escape public schools.

Government wages are higher than market wages. The true price a teacher could command if we had a free market educational system, would be somewhere between the monopoly wage of the public schools and the wage paid by the private schools. We can’t know what it would be, all we know is the wage would be revealed through the interactions between individual demanders and suppliers of the service in the market. The true price of a teachers wage can only be discovered through the market process.

GOVERNMENT STIFLES JOB CREATION

Below are two great articles. One is about how Government regulatory costs make it difficult, if not impossible, to create real jobs in the private sector. And the other tells how we must get back to the understanding that the individuals rights as a free person trumps some vague idea of a collective good.

The first is, Our Government Destroyer of Jobs, by Charles Hugh Smith, at oftwominds.

Here are some excerpts from the article.

“Government regulation is supposed to address life safety and exploitation of workers and the public. But unbeknownst to the status quo, it’s supposed to do so with an eye on cost-benefits and diminishing returns.”

“The government’s solution to absurdly high costs of opening a small business is: borrow more money….. we make the rules, you follow them, and if you can’t afford to follow the rules, then don’t open the business.”

“This is how you get an economy of bureaucrats justifying their existence with 500-page manuals regulating private enterprise and abandoned main streets and malls. The government assumes private enterprise will jump through an endless number of hoops to operate a business, and that there is an endless supply of willing entrepreneurs who will volunteer to put themselves at risk of bankruptcy.”

“Back in reality, there is not an endless supply of people willing to jump through an insane number of hoops and risk their capital and health on starting a risky enterprise.”

“Guess what, our government: you forgot that ultimately you live off the private sector. Yes, let’s pile on another 500 pages of regulations–no problem–nothing could be easier for those in secure jobs funded by taxpayers. But if the private-sector jobs go away, who’s left to pay for state employees to shuffle thousands of pages of regulations and enforce countless “improvements”?”

FREE INDIVIDUALS  vs. THE COLLECTIVE

The second is, Agenda For A Freer And More Prosperous America, by Richard Ebeling, at epictimes.com.

Here are some excerpts from the article.

“America must rediscover and reestablish its own founding principles and philosophical ideas…This means recapturing the spirit and meaning of individualism and individual rights. That every human being should be considered a free person, allowed to live his or her own life as he or she wished, guided by their own goals, purposes and ideals that will give their life meaning, value and worth, as they define it.”

“This means liberating ourselves from the false notion that the individual is owned and subservient to the collective, the tribe or the group into which they were born, and to which a political and ideological elite asserts they are to be sacrificed and obedient; that their life is not their own, but the property of the collective.”

“As long as the underlying collectivism is not challenged and overcome, real and sustainable freedom cannot be restored. America was founded on the idea of sovereign individuals, who associated with each other for mutual betterment through voluntary trade and consensual association. Government was meant to secure and protect each individual’s right to his life, liberty and honestly acquired property (meaning peaceful production and/or voluntary exchange).”

“Privileges and favors, subsidies and artificial protections for some at the expense of others must be repealed and abolished. There must be an equality of individual rights before the law, not an inequality of government-imposed “entitlements” and redistributive “rights”….”

“Freeing markets under a regime of equal individual right under an impartial rule and enforcement of the law would do far more to help those that “progressives” claim there are most concerned about in society than the entire array of interventionist and welfare statist programs have done in more than a half a century of coerced redistribution since the heady hopes of LBJ’s Great Society programs.

VIDEO FROM LEARN LIBERTY

Below is a video from Learn Liberty, that talks about the ramifications of the new sharing economy. This sharing economy is challenging the status quo businesses that are protected by government regulations.

 

Related ArticleWhy Do People Think The Government Is The Economy? at austrianaddict.com.

Related ArticleI’m From The Government And I’m Here To Help, at austrianaddict.com.

‘CAR WARS’ Return Of The Jitneys

July 20, 2015

UBER vs. THE TAXI CARTEL

The battle between upstart competitor Uber and the monopoly held by the taxi cartel isn’t anything new. Around 1915, owner operated taxi services called ‘jitneys’, fought this battle against the government created rail transportation monopoly. The rise of Uber and their battle with the taxi cartel reminded me of something I read in Thomas Sowell’s book Knowledge and Decisions, published in 1980. (Everyone should read this book.) In the chapter, Trends in Economics, Dr. Sowell talks about “forcibly changing costs” through government regulation. Here are his words. Does this sounds eerily similar to what Uber is doing?

“The history of American transportation, from municipal bus and street lines to railroads and airlines is a history of government – imposed cross-subsidies. Initially, municipal transit was privately owned by a number of firms operating streetcars along various routes. The creation of city-wide franchises – monopolies – was usually accompanied by fixed fares, regardless of distance traveled or transfers required. “

“When a price is simply made higher by government fiat…it conveys a false picture of the “society”, thereby causing potential consumers to forego the product even though others are perfectly willing to supply it for a price that they are willing to pay.”

“Like most price discriminators, municipal transit was vulnerable to competitors who chose to serve the overcharged segment of their customers. Around 1914-1915, the mass production of the automobile led to the rise of owner-operated bus and taxi services costing five cents and therefore called “jitneys” the current slang for nickles:”

“The jitneys were owner-operated vehicles which essentially provided a competitive market in urban transportation with the usual characteristics of rapid entry and exit, quick adaptation to changes in demand, and, in particular, excellent adaptation to peak load demands. Some 60 percent of the jitneymen were part-time operators, many of whom simply carried passengers for nickel on trips between home and work. Consequently, cities were crisscrossed with an infinity of home-to-work routes every rush hour.

The jitneys were put down in every American city to protect the street railways and, in particular, to perpetuate the cross-subsidization of the street railways city-wide fare structures. As a result, the public moved to automobiles as private rather than common carriers…”

“The rush-hour traffic congestion caused by thousands of people going to work separately in individual automobiles has been denounced by social critics as “irrational” and explained by some mysterious psychological attraction of Americans to automobiles. It is, however, a perfectly rational response to the incentives and constraints conveyed. The actual costs and benefits of automobile-sharing are forcibly prevented from being conveyed by prices. As in other areas, claims of public irrationality are a prelude to arguments for a government-imposed “solution” to the “problem”. As in other areas, it is precisely the government’s use of force to prevent the accurate transmission of knowledge through prices that leads to the suboptimal systemic results which are articulated as irrational intentional results of a personified “society”.”

“…maintenance of incumbent transportation entities, often implies the maintenance of incumbent technologies ie., subsidized obsolescence, resisting the phasing out of existing modes of operation, as competing modes arise…..competing modes with technological or organizational advantages are either penalized or prohibited (as in the case of the jitneys), to preserve incumbent organizations and technology.”

MONOPOLIES CAN’T EXIST WITHOUT GOVERNMENT SANCTION

Uber is the modern-day version of the jitneys from 100 years ago. The taxi cartel is the protected “incumbent transportation entity”. The street rail system couldn’t foresee a competitor until a new technology, the automobile, came into existence, just as the taxi cartel couldn’t foresee a competitor until a ride sharing app came into existence. Government created monopolies look to government for help in stifling competition. When a business begins to expand because they win a larger share of the market, its efforts turn away from serving customers and toward protecting their market position. They lobby government to pass regulations making it more difficult, if not illegal, for competitors to enter the market. The combination of big business and big government is toxic to the economy and consumers.

FREE MARKETS OR CENTRAL PLANNING

In this article, Once A Sure Bet, Taxi Medallions Becoming Unsellable, there is a video of a Chicago taxi driver complaining about Uber drivers not having to jump through all the government hoops that taxi drivers have to jump through to be licensed to drive people around. He doesn’t realize that he is actually making the case against government intervention into the taxi industry. Starting with the price of the taxi medallion and going through all the other costly regulations is an indictment of government, not Uber.

This article, Major Trouble For Uber In California, is an example of governments trying to regulate Uber, at the cost of the consumer. Politicians and bureaucrats don’t understand that a free market creates the incentive for businesses to provide great service, or the consumer has an option of going to a competitor. Under a government created monopoly system the business has no incentive to provide great service for the consumer, because there are no competitors, (Think DMV) read this article, Uber vs Big Taxi: Time To Resolve Driver Complaints – Seconds/Days vs. Years.

The consumer pays a higher price because the supply of cabs is limited to the amount of medallions issued by the government. In a free market supply and demand coordinates the number of cab  drivers and passengers at a particular price. Allowing the price to change, allows supply and demand to be continually coordinated according to the changing values of demanders and suppliers.

HOW UBER WORKS

 

The ride sharing Genie is out of the proverbial bottle. Governments can’t stop it. With how quickly technology changes, don’t be surprised if something different comes along that will challenge Uber as the most cost effective way of transporting people from one place to another. Can you say, “Beam me up Scottie”?

 

Related ArticleAre People Smarter Today Compared To People 100 Years Ago?, at austrianaddict.com.

Obama Wants “Net Neutrality” Regulations. That’s Why We Should Oppose Them.

November 19, 2014

Here is a video of The President talking about net neutrality.

Sounds like he really wants to protect us, the little guys, from big corporations doesn’t it. Why should we believe the man who pushed a bill titled, “The Affordable Care Act”, which made healthcare less affordable. Is the term “Net Neutrality” any different from “The Affordable Care Act”. You can bet your life that Net Neutrality regulations will make the internet less neutral, less free, and more expensive.

This video is an example of the truth about Obamacare aka The Affordable Care Act. The administrations favorite economist when it came to Obamacare, Jonathan Gruber, is proud of the lies that were told in order to sell Obamacare to the public. When you watch this guy, you are actually watching what the President, his administration, and the Congressmen and Senators who voted for this, think about you.

Obamacare has made individuals less free to choose how they want to pay for their healthcare. Insurance companies were for this law because they thought they would benefit by its passage. With the stroke of the pen, the law created 30 million more costumers for insurance companies. The fact that it expanded Governments power over the individual makes politicians and bureaucrats happy. But who among us wouldn’t want our power expanded?

Net neutrality laws will help the already established tech companies and hurt the upstart competitors who, under normal market conditions, would normally be a check on the big providers. The threat of competitors trying to get market share keeps them in line. This is what Uber is doing to the taxi cartel. Big tech companies will be for this, or at least be tepid in their resistance to it. Once Government regulates the internet, these tech companies will be the protected cartel.

Politicians and bureaucrats will not only be able to tax the internet more easily, they will be able to make rules about content and access. Think of what bureaucrats (Lois Lerner) in the IRS did to stifle liberty minded groups from getting their message out. Politicians and bureaucrats are only in favor of free speech if they agree with what is said, they are never neutral when it comes to losing power.

Politicians and bureaucrats have been trying for years to figure out how to intervene into the internet. The internet is what has allowed our economy to grow in spite of the interventions by the Government and the Fed. Now, for some reason, the President and bureaucrats want to intervene into an area of the economy that has had exponential expansion without the “help” of Government regulations.

Tyrants want to control information because truth is never on their side. Since the internet is the marketplace for truth, even democratically elected tyrants want to have the ability to control and/or propagandize their message.

Even if the President and the FCC succeed in getting regulations, the internet Jeannie is out of the bottle. They will show their true tyrannical colors with these regulations, but the marketplace will find ways to deliver a highly demanded market good outside of these Government regulations. The tighter they squeeze, the more will slip from their hands.

 

Burger King, Corporate Tax Inversions, And Political Theater.

September 1, 2014

 

Just an 80's era Burger King

The recent bashing of Burger King about their merger with Tim Hortons is nothing more than political theater being staged for the upcoming November elections. The political strategy of: divide us into as many groups as possible, pit us against each other using propaganda, and set up the false narrative that Government is the only solution to the made up problem is in full swing. In this case it’s the usual tried and true tactic of the haves vs. the have-nots.

POLITICAL PROPAGANDA / HOME OF THE WHOPPER

A corporate tax inversions is simply a corporation merging with an overseas company from a country that has a lower tax rate. The President has been propagandizing inversions lately for political reasons. If you don’t believe me watch this short video ( if you can get through the first minute). The words used, the tone of his voice, and the misinformation in this video would make Joseph Goebbels envious.

Tactics like this aren’t new. In May of 2013 Apple was brought in front of a Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee hearing to be lambasted about their tax practices. These hearings are always political theater. But in this case something different happened. Senator Rand Paul took the unpopular stance of defending Apple.

Which video do you believe is factually true of just a piece of propaganda. We have to be able to sift through the propaganda and rhetoric of both sides in order to get to the truth.

TAX INVERSION MATHMATICS

The Federal Government will collect $20 billion less in tax revenue over a decade if tax inversions aren’t halted (read here). That’s only $2 billion a year out of a $3.7 trillion yearly Federal budget, or .001 percent of the budget. If you add the fact that the Fed is still printing $25 billion a month, you see the insignificant amount of money involved. Politicians will propagandize inversions by saying, “this will ‘cost tax payers’ blah blah blah”, or something about corporations, “trying to avoid paying their fair share”. This is purely political posturing through propaganda.

PERVERSE BED FELLOWS

Here is an article titled, Buffett Burger King Funds Flip Obama’s Inversion Calculus. It is interesting to see all the corners these crony capitalists and politicians get paint into because of their incestuous relationship with each other. Here are some excerpts.

“Billionaire Warren Buffett was an ally of President Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign and the force behind Obama’s “Buffett Rule,” designed to increase tax bills for the wealthiest Americans. Now, the second-richest man in the U.S. has dented Obama’s effort to stamp out corporate inversions.”

“The danger for Democrats is that Buffett’s investment in the burger-fries-and-a-Coke company’s inversion might flip that calculation and make it politically easier for other corporations to follow suit without suffering repudiation from the public or the White House.”

“That’s because Buffett in the past has served as a sort of unofficial adviser to Obama on business and financial matters, someone whose stamp of approval has offered political cover when the president has been accused of being anti-business or of unfairly targeting the wealthy….If Obama were to question the Burger King deal publicly now, it would mean putting himself at odds with Buffett.”

“I proposed closing this unpatriotic tax loophole for good,” Obama said in his weekly address on July 26. “Rather than double-down on the top-down economics that let a fortunate few play by their own rules, let’s embrace an economic patriotism..”

“…Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew called on Congress to pass a law requiring that foreign shareholders account for 50 percent of the ownership of a new merger between a U.S. company and a foreign one … The administration wants that change made retroactive to May…. legislation taking effect after the president signs it into law — could have the perverse effect of encouraging corporations to act more quickly, negotiate new deals and rush to close those transactions before the bill is enacted,” Lew wrote. “It would be a mistake for Congress to pass anti-inversion legislation that creates a race against the clock and encourages more, not fewer, inversions.”

I want to disinfect myself after reading that.

GEORGE McGOVERN: FREE MARKET CONVERT?

Former Senator and 1972 Democratic Presidential nominee George McGovern talked about his experience dealing with Government regulations and mandates after he retired from politics and became a business owner, in this article titled What I Know Now: Nibbled To Death. Here are a few excerpts from the article.

“The second lesson I learned by owning the Stratford Inn is that legislators and government regulators must more carefully consider the economic and management burdens we have been imposing on U.S. business.”

“….if I were back in the U.S. Senate or in the White House, I would ask a lot of questions before I voted for any more burdens on the thousands of struggling businesses across the nation….. I would ask whether specific legislation exacts a managerial price exceeding any overall benefit it might produce. What are the real economic and social gains of the legislation when compared with the costs and competitive handicaps it imposes on businesspeople?”

“…While running my struggling hotel, I never once missed a payroll. What happens to the people who counted on that, and to their families and community, when an owner goes under? Those questions worry me, and they ought to worry all of us who love this country as a land of promise and opportunity.”

I think this article was written around 1993. If Senator McGovern thought regulations and mandates were bad then, what would he think about them if he were alive today. Senator McGovern was a big Government leftist, but he realized at some point regulations and mandates destroy economic activity. [Or did he just want regulations to be at a level in which his business could survive? Would he have written this this article if regulations weren’t at a level that affected his business? His business just happened to be the submarginal business, what if it had been the supramarginal business?}.

CONCLUSION

“The economy” is what results when each individual is free to make decisions on what to produce, consume, save, or exchange according to what he values at any particular time. Outside of protecting  property rights, contracts, and torts: government interventions hamper the decision-making by individuals, by definition hurting the economy.

Government intervention substitutes the decisions of individual politicians and bureaucrats, for the decisions of free individuals in the market, creating a lower overall standard of living, and individuals who are less satisfied.

Politicians are always performing in the political theater, because they realize that the political process is the only way they can get in positions of power to enforce their superior wisdom on the masses. We have to realize this, and be able to weed out the propaganda from the facts if we are going to be able to turn the big Government ship around.