Ryan Young

Markets vs. Special Interests

by Ryan Young on October 12, 2009

in Blog

Detractors of capitalism decry that it caters to special interests. The opposite is actually true. Just look at what’s happened in the last year.

Most of Wall Street came to government asking for a bailout when the government-created housing bubble popped.

The Big Three automakers also went to Washington for largesse when their customers came to prefer Toyotas and Hondas.

Health insurance companies stand to make a killing if Obamacare passes.

T. Boone Pickens and Al Gore would make millions from environmental legislation.

Ludwig von Mises explained the reason for all of this corrupt behavior with a single sentence back in 1949: “It is precisely the fact that the market does not respect vested interests that makes the people concerned ask for government interference.”
Human Action, 4th Edition, p. 337.

Funny, That

by Ryan Young on September 23, 2009

in Blog

An article in today’s New York Times laments the difficulty of “building momentum for an international climate treaty at a time when global temperatures have been relatively stable for a decade and may even drop in the next few years.”

In today’s Politico, I take a look at one of the 397 new regulations in the House version of cap and trade legislation. If the bill passes, almost all homes for sale would be required to undergo an environmental inspection. The home cannot be sold until it is up to code.

One unintended consequence could be the end of fixer-upper homes.

Another would be lower home ownership rates. Which, of course, directly contradicts of decades of federal policy.

Leave it to the Experts

by Ryan Young on July 23, 2009

Compact fluorescent light bulbs are difficult to dispose of. They contain mercury that can leak into the environment. If one breaks, cleaning it up is an even trickier matter. The EPA has a 19-point guideline on proper procedure.

Some smart-aleck came up with a simpler idea: Send your used light bulbs to Washington! They’re the experts. They’ll know what to do.

The tenth in an occasional series that shines a bit of light on the regulatory state.

Today’s Regulation of the Day comes to us from the U.S. House of Representatives (435 employees, $4 trillion budget).

The Waxman-Markey cap and trade bill that passed the House last week contains 397 new regulations, according to CEI Energy Policy Analyst William Yeatman and former CEI Warren Brookes Fellow Jeremy Lott. The legislation now heads off to the Senate.

It is worth noting that just minutes after the final vote came in, Washington was hit by a fierce hail storm; not that Congress’ doings have any cause-and-effect relationship with the weather (ahem).

You can read the bill — Congress didn’t — by clicking here.