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CPRBlog: The Economist Recycles Old Right-Wing Ideas to Gut Public Protections

The Economist's February 18 edition offers a cover package of five articles on "Over-regulated America" (1, 2, 3, 4, 5). Our British friends want you to know there's a problem here in the States that needs fixing:

A study for the Small Business Administration, a government body, found that regulations in general add $10,585 in costs per employee. It's a wonder the jobless rate isn't even higher than it is.

You can almost feel The Economist's pain: the jobless rate should be a lot higher than it is, if the premise about the costs of regulations is correct. Surely if the regulatory burden were actually 12 percent of GDP - that's what the SBA numbers say, if you draw them out - things would be far worse than they are. Ideologically unable to consider the obvious alternative - that regulations don't add $10,585 in costs per employee, The Economist, just, well, "wonders" aloud.

Here's what The Economist would have found if they'd dug just a little bit:  Fully 70 percent of the SBA estimate was actually based on a regression analysis using opinion polling data on perceived regulatory climate across countries (in a strange twist, a separate article in the same issue actually questions the study, briefly). Whole reports have been written on why that number is bogus.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Feb 21st, 2012 at 01:56:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, but haters gotta hate. It's what they do

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2012 at 03:01:56 AM EST
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