Archive for the ‘Regulations’ Category

During President Reagan’s administration, Dutch coined a phrase that Democrats should consider adopting. Dutch’s phrase was (pretty close, though not verbatim) ‘It’s amazing how much you can accomplish when you don’t care who gets credit for doing what.’ President Reagan’s battles with Speaker Tip O’Neil were epic. Still, they figured out ways to accomplish big things despite their oft-heated relationship. They passed the Kemp-Roth tax cuts that energized the US economy after 4 years of malaise under Jimmy Carter. They worked together to rebuild the US military after Carter’s budgets hollowed out the military, both in terms of personnel and in terms of parts for military hardware.

The point was that Tip O’Neil and Ronald Reagan figured out a way to work together. They worked together because Tip O’Neil put a higher priority on improving Americans’ lives than he put on resisting. They worked together because President Reagan put a higher priority on fixing the US than he put on winning the next election.

That doesn’t fit into the Democrats’ strategy. Today’s Democrats don’t put a high priority of giving a little and getting a little. Today’s Democrats don’t give. Instead, they insist on getting everything they want without giving Republicans anything that they want.

It’s time to coin this new phrase: ‘It’s amazing how a handful of nutjobs can demolish a pro-American agenda’. Does anyone seriously think that we’ve only got 12 years left on this planet? Does anyone seriously think that opening our borders, then giving illegal immigrants free health care and virtual citizenship is wise?

Americans face a choice. The best thing for Americans would be for Democrats to cooperate with Republicans where both sides get things that they want. If Democrats don’t cooperate with President Trump and House and Senate Republicans, that puts the blame for substandard public safety, out-of-control human trafficking, aka sex trafficking, and not participating in building a robust economy. If that’s the option Democrats choose, which increasingly looks like their choice, then the American people face a choice of whether they’ll re-elect a bunch of Do-Nothing Democrats next November that’ve done nothing to make Americans’ lives better and who haven’t kept any of their 2018 campaign promises on health care or the economy or whether they’ll elect GOP majorities in the House and Senate to work with President Trump in building a prosperous, safe United States.

Democrats need to ask themselves if they want to be Americans first or Democrats first. If Democrats opt for the latter, then they’ll deserve a butt-kicking. Unfortunately, I’m betting that the Democrats opt for the latter. There’s certainly more proof that they put a higher allegiance to their party than to this nation.

When Republicans cut taxes in Trump’s first year in office, all House Democrats and all Senate Democrats voted against the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Couple the Trump/GOP tax cuts with the regulations that Republicans removed and you’ve explained why the economy is so strong. Every Democrat voted against prosperity as part of the Resist Movement.

That’s why Democrats must be defeated next November. They literally don’t have any accomplishments since President Trump took office. It’s impossible to point to any problems that the Democrats have solved. Why keep people in office if they don’t solve problems? A little less than 4 minutes into this interview, Kevin McCarthy went through the Republicans’ priorities if they their House majority back. I think it’s quite the appealing agenda:

Doesn’t that sound much better than just resisting? Isn’t that better than what the Do-Nothing Democrats have done lately?

People need to reject the MSM’s attempt to talk the US economy into a recession. The Democrats’ media wing is doing its level best to convince people that their rising wages haven’t happened. The Democrats’ media wing is also trying to families’ strong confidence isn’t warranted.

Democrats are doing this in their attempt to win an election. They aren’t talking about the strong fundamentals. Democrats won’t admit that the Trump/GOP tax cuts work. Democrats won’t admit that the Trump/GOP regulation reductions have turned the US energy industry into one of the strongest growth industries in the world. Admitting that would be disastrous for Democrats.

It’d be disastrous for Democrats because it would tell people that voting for President Trump’s re-election would keep the US economy strong and growing. As Liz Peek writes “it’s hard to call for a revolution if the people are happy.” That’s exactly right, Liz. And right now, people are happy:

That’s why Democrats and their media enablers were beyond giddy to see markets nosedive. This was it, pundits proclaimed: Trump’s trade war has brought us to the brink of a downturn. Maybe. But maybe not. The very next day, the Commerce Department reported that U.S. retail sales surged 0.7 percent in July, up from a 0.3 percent gain in June, beating expectations.

The U.S. consumer continues to defy prognosticators; despite Democrats campaigning on the miseries of the middle class, by gosh the middle class insists on streaming into Walmart and pumping up the economy. Walmart just reported that its “U.S. comp sales increased on a two-year stacked basis by 7.3%, which is the strongest growth in more than 10 years.”

Also, the Labor Department reported that productivity rose 2.3 percent in the second quarter, down from 3.5 percent in the first quarter, but a solid gain nonetheless, and one that bodes well for future wage hikes.

Those damned uppity peasants just won’t listen to their Democrat betters. Those uppity peasants have maintained a strong confidence in the US economy’s trajectory. That might be irrational but it’s nonetheless real. Consumer confidence is currently at 135.7, which is exceptionally high.

Again, it’s impossible to get the peasants to grab their pitchforks and run the President out of office when they’d rather thank him for starting the rebuilding of their communities, the tax cuts and the pay raises. Speaker Pelosi hasn’t admitted that the economy is humming, especially in this statement:

“The July jobs report shows some encouraging news, but for the families across the nation working multiple jobs and struggling to make ends meet, the cost of living has surged, wages have stagnated and the GOP’s disastrous special interest agenda has left them behind.

“Republicans continue to push a radical agenda that enriches the wealthy and well-connected while failing hard-working Americans. Farmers are struggling, economic uncertainty is growing, and the Trump Administration is making it harder for hungry families to make ends meet. But while Republicans explore handing even bigger tax breaks to billionaires, the Democratic Majority has taken bold action to deliver bigger paychecks for up to 33 million hard-working Americans, passing the Raise the Wage Act to gradually increasing the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour.

I’d love watching Speaker Pelosi, or any Democrat for that matter, debate Eric Trump. Eric’s appearance here was impressive:

Eventually, there will be a recession. Will that happen soon? I’m betting it’s a ways off.

Back in the late 1970s, it was fashionable for supposed intellectuals to talk about how the presidency was just too big for one man. The political science professoriate talked about the need for a co-presidency. That professoriate even talked about changing the Constitution so that the president would serve a single 6-year term. That was during Jimmy Carter’s single 4-year term in office.

That fashionable talk disappeared the minute President Reagan took over and got the economy hitting on all cylinders. In October, 1983, the US economy created 1,100,000 jobs. I’ve got to think that’s the single-month record and that it’ll never be eclipsed. It wasn’t that the presidency was too big for one man. It’s that it was too big for that man, aka Jimmy Carter.

During his final months in office, President Obama ridiculed then-candidate Trump, saying that you’d need a magic wand to bring back manufacturing jobs during this townhall:

Twitchy has noticed Republicans, especially Donald Trump Jr., ridiculing President Obama and his “magic wand” statement:


Just like with Reagan replacing Carter, we’re seeing the same robust economic growth increase from the turnover from Obama to President Trump. The comparison is striking. President Reagan cut taxes dramatically, especially capital gains, while pursuing deregulation, especially in the energy sector. President Trump is following the same path to success, virtually to a T.

At this week’s Democrat presidential debates, Democrat presidential candidates criticized President Obama for not being sufficiently socialist enough. By the time Democrats pick their nominee, which might not be determined until their convention, President Trump will join in the criticism of President Obama. It’s just that President Trump will criticize President Obama for not being sufficiently capitalist enough.

It’s entirely possible that President Trump will win a decisive victory, though I can’t predict him winning the 525 electoral votes that President Reagan achieved in 1984. Talk about deja vu all over again.

Based on the massive tax increases in Tim Walz’s budget, he intends to continue Gov. Dayton’s work of turning Minnesota into a cold California. Walz’s budget calls for a couple massive tax increases and a massive spending increase. It does nothing to make Minnesota a pro-growth state. The biggest ‘accomplishment’ of Gov. Walz’s budget is that it makes Minnesota less competitive.

Gov. Walz won’t admit it but he’s a dipstick. Look what he said about education:

The first priority of my budget is education. As a former teacher, I’ve seen firsthand the power of education to change a life. But as I travel around the state, I see how the quality of a student’s education is too often dependent on their race or ZIP code.

That’s BS. The biggest determinant is whether a student comes from a 2-parent family. If they don’t, their chances of getting a great education drop significantly.

Here’s another thing Gov. Walz said:

The third priority of my budget is community prosperity. Right now, whether from the urban North Side of Minneapolis or the rural town of Hallock, many families struggle to find child care for their kids, secure housing that’s affordable or even just make ends meet.

Our budget tackles these challenges head on. It expands access to the Child Care Assistance Program and increases the supply of quality child care in shortage areas. It increases rates of homeownership for households of color, expands workforce housing in greater Minnesota, and provides loans to help seniors stay in their homes. It reinstates state aid to cities and counties across Minnesota to help local governments in greater Minnesota improve public safety, streets, libraries, parks and housing.

I don’t doubt that it’s difficult finding affordable child care. However, the Walz-Flanagan budget does nothing to increase prosperity. Taking money out of people’s wallets to pay for other things isn’t the right way to build wealth. Imposing regulations is another way to prevent the creation of wealth.

In the first 2 months of the Walz-Flanagan administration, they’ve filed a lawsuit and proposed major tax increases. That’s how to prevent prosperity.

According to this article, the Center for the American Experiment is ruffling a few feathers with its recent report on Minnesota’s economy. Economist John Phelan, the author of the report, wrote that “The state’s economy is growing, but it’s growing below the national average.”

Later in the article, it says “Phelan cited data that has become popular with conservative economists: gross domestic product per worker. By that measure, Minnesota ranks 28th among the 50 states and Washington, D.C., and is well below the national average. It’s in stark contrast to the figures cited by economists, including gross domestic product per capita. By that measure, Minnesota is indeed above the national average and ranked 15th. The difference is that per capita measures the state’s economy against its entire population, while per worker measures it against only those who are employed.”

Economists can argue which is the better way of measuring economic growth. The only thing that people care about are whether lots of good-paying jobs are getting created. They aren’t. If the economy was creating lots of good-paying jobs, there wouldn’t need to be a push for a $15/hr. minimum wage because the economy would be creating lots of jobs that pay more than that.

Further, companies and people are moving out of Minnesota for places like North Carolina, Georgia, Texas and other states because Minnesota’s business climate sucks. The DFL argues that we just need a well-trained work force. I don’t disagree that we need skilled workers but I’ll vehemently disagree that that’s all we need. I was stunned to hear during the campaign that Minnesota’s lowest income tax bracket was higher than the top bracket in 20+ states.

That’s before we talk about Minnesota’s regulatory regime. Saying that it’s stifling is understatement. It’s designed to prevent competition and prevent economic growth. Most of it is built to appease the environmental activists and encourage lawsuits.

Given the high taxes and punishing regulations, why would anyone build or expand their business in Minnesota? They’d have to be masochistic.

There’s a penalty Minnesotans are paying for electing divided government. That penalty comes in the form of higher taxes, more intrusive regulations and a regulatory structure that gives special interests too many bites at the proverbial apple.

When the DFL ran St. Paul in 2013-14, they rammed huge tax and spending increases down our throats. That’s when Minnesota became less competitive in terms of business environment. The truth is that Minnesota has an outmigration of wealth and talent for years. It isn’t just retirees, either, moving to warmer climates. It’s young people moving to other states to start businesses where taxes and regulations aren’t oppressive.

The regulatory regime isn’t the same as the regulations. For PolyMet to start operations, they have to get approval from the DNR, MPCA, the Department of Health, the Board of Water and Soil Resources (BOWSR), the Public Utilities Commission in addition to local watershed districts and other regulators. It isn’t surprising that people — and wealth are leaving.

This is an organizational chart of Minnesota’s executive branch:

Within the executive branch, there are close to 2 dozen regulatory agencies. They include the MPCA, BOWSR, the DNR, Department of Health, Met Council, the Public Utilities Commission, the Board on Environmental Quality, the State Climatology Office, the Department of Commerce, the Board of Energy, the Minnesota Forest Resources Council, the Minnesota Geological Survey, the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council, the Office of Energy Security, the Office of Pipeline Safety, just to name a few.

The point is that the DFL has controlled at least one part of government my entire adult life. It has created a convoluted system of government that’s stuck in the Twentieth Century. The DFL insists on maintaining a mainframe government in an iPad world.

Gov. Dayton and then-Lt. Gov. Tina Smith ignored welfare fraud, elder care abuse and overseen IT disasters like MNsure and MNLARS. When the DFL had majorities in the House and Senate and Gov. Dayton was governor, they raised taxes and raised the state minimum wage, then indexed it to inflation. Further, the DFL hasn’t reformed anything like the IRRRB or the Met Council in forever. They’ve participated in scandals like the Action Minneapolis rip-off, too.

Considering all those things, I can’t justify why they should hold any levers of power in St. Paul.

Steve Rattner “served as lead adviser to the Presidential Task Force on the Auto Industry in 2009 for the Obama administration.” This morning, the racist NYTimes published Rattner’s op-ed, which is simply a continuation of President Obama’s attempt to lie about the success of President Obama’s economic policies.

In President Obama’s attempt to spin his policies, he’s either forced to lying outright or he’s too unwilling to admit that his policies failed. Prior to serving in the Obama administration, Rattner “was a managing principal of the Quadrangle Group, a private equity investment firm that specialized in the media and communications industries. Prior to co-founding Quadrangle, he was an investment banker at Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley, and Lazard Freres & Co., where he rose to deputy chairman and deputy chief executive officer.” But I digress.

In his op-ed, Rattner wrote that “For the second consecutive Friday, the Trump administration had an opportunity to point to fresh data that supposedly demonstrates the strong boost the president’s policies have given to the nation’s economy. Last week, news that the gross domestic product expanded at a 4.1 percent rate in the second quarter occasioned a presidential appearance on the south lawn of the White House. Friday’s announcement that 157,000 new jobs were added in July was marked more modestly, with a statement from the White House.”

Let’s be clear about something. There’s no disputing the fact that the economy is stronger than it was during the Obama administration. The energy sector is booming. Manufacturing is the strongest it’s been in a generation. Unemployment in minority communities is the lowest it’s been in history. Literally trillions of dollars are flooding into the United States now that the Obama tax disaster has been repealed and replaced with the Trump/GOP tax cuts. Business investments are increasing nicely.

Yes, the economy is continuing to expand nicely, which all Americans should celebrate. But no, there’s nothing remarkable in the overall results since Mr. Trump took office. Most importantly, there is little evidence that the president’s policies have meaningfully improved the fortunes of those “forgotten” Americans who elected him.

Nancy Pelosi called the tax cuts “crumbs.”

This is Rattner’s more elegant way of saying that the Trump economy is delivering crumbs to the American people. Tell that to these people:

According to the workers at Granite City Works, President Trump’s policies aren’t just providing jobs after the plant was idled on President Obama’s watch. It’s that those workers said that Granite City, IL is getting rebuilt one neighborhood, one family at a time.

Yes, Mr. Rattner, there were far too many people forgotten by President Obama’s policies. If you weren’t part of the well-connected crowd, you didn’t share in the prosperity. If you didn’t work in one of the industries that President Obama picked as a winner, you were in tough shape. Those forgotten workers aren’t forgotten anymore.

The dishonesty of people like Mr. Rattner and other Obama administration spinmeisters is disgusting. President Obama himself said that he planned on shutting down the coal industry. President Obama said that tons of jobs weren’t coming back. He’s right in once sense. Those jobs wouldn’t have come back with his disastrous tax and regulatory policies. Now that those policies have been replaced by pro-growth economic policies, things have gotten consistently better.

As a result, consumer confidence is sky-high and the economy is robust again. How do I know? I know by the amount of traffic on the highways heading out on vacation. This Friday, the traffic on Highway 10 (at 11:00 am, I might add) was bumper-to-bumper. I never saw that during the Obama administration.

That’s because people have money in their pockets to spend again. The behavior of the American people is dramatically different. That’s reflected in the consumer confidence numbers.

No amount of Obama administration spin will change that.

One thing that’s apparent from this past week is that the Democrats’ plan to counter the good economic news is to insist that President Obama deserves great credit for the strong economy. During the first roundtable discussion on Fox News Sunday, Democrat spinmeister Mo Elleithee went right to work on that storyline.

First, Chris Wallace asked “Mo, there has been a lot of talk about a blue wave this November, a big Democratic pickup, may be control of the House, maybe even control of the Senate. But I think you would agree in the absence of where the economy is always the top issue and when you got strong economic growth, when you got historically low unemployment number, isn’t that a pretty strong record for Republicans to run on?” Elleithee replied by saying “Look, first of all, we should all be celebrating 4.1 economic growth. That’s a good number, a strong number. It also would have been the fifth strongest number of the Obama administration, right? The Obama administration — this is the continuation of economic recovery that began in 2009 and 2010. That strong economy wasn’t enough to save Democrats last time. It’s not enough to say it will be enough to say it would save Republicans this time.”

Republicans on the panel should’ve jumped on that immediately. Unfortunately, notorious Trump-hater Jonah Goldberg sat silent. Ditto with Jillian Turner. Since they sat silent, I’ll say what I would’ve said had I been on that panel. First, I would’ve highlighted the fact that President Trump and the GOP Congress scrapped the Obama-era tax system. They essentially threw it out and started from scratch. Thanks to the Trump/GOP tax cuts, business investment is accelerating, capital from overseas investments are flooding into the United States where manufacturing plants are being built or re-opened.

Remember when the Obama administration told us that those jobs were gone forever? I certainly remember. Apparently, all that was required were the right policies. Manufacturing is back in a big way. President Obama doesn’t get credit for the manufacturing rebound.

President Trump unleashed the energy sector by eliminating President Obama’s regulations that were intended to strangle the fossil fuel industry. Now we’re a net exporter of fossil fuels. Another thing is that the manufacturing sector is getting stronger quickly. That’s what I’d expect. President Obama worked tirelessly to put the fossil fuel industry out of business. He can’t take credit for that resurgent industry, the jobs it’s creating or the communities it’s rebuilding. Remember this statement from the campaign trail?

This month’s job report showed that people are returning to the workforce because they know there’s finally good-paying jobs available. In fact, for the first time in history, there are more job openings than there are workers to fill those positions. A frequent highlight of the Obama-era jobs reports was the part where they’d say how many people dropped out of the workforce or how the workforce participation rate had dropped. President Obama can’t take credit for that.

President Obama can’t take credit for surging consumer confidence or business confidence, either. Neither sector was particularly confident during the Obama administration. In truth, there’s nothing from the Obama administration’s policies that are contributing to the strengthening Trump economy. Period.

Last night, Juan Williams was on Fox News @ Night to talk about Friday’s GDP report. Something he hinted at, which isn’t a first, is that the Trump GDP numbers are a continuation of the Obama recovery. Let’s be clear about things. First, it’s indisputable that the recovery from the Great Recession started early in the Obama administration. People arguing otherwise just aren’t telling the truth. Second, anyone that thinks that the Trump economy’s growth is based on a continuation of Obama-era policies simply isn’t informed.

From Day One, President Trump and the GOP Congress have done their best to sweep aside the Obama administration’s policies. That’s why people elected President Trump. They wanted a Disruptor-in-Chief. They didn’t want a Stay-the-Course administration.

One of the first thing the Trump administration was to unleash the energy sector, starting with green-lighting the Keystone XL Pipeline and increasing fracking for oil and natural gas. They stopped in its tracks the war on coal, thanks in large part to the rolling back of regulations put in place late in the Obama administration through the unprecedented use of the Congressional Review Act. Time and again, that was used to rid ourselves of the anti-mining regulations that the Obama administration put in place.

Those things alone would’ve helped the economy soar. But that’s only part of the story. The highest profile legislative victory of the Trump administration is the passage of the Trump/GOP tax cuts. Those tax cuts are working and everyone knows it. Are they enough to push growth into the stratosphere? I’ll say it this way: they’re opening up new opportunities for entrepreneurship. President Trump has unleashed the animal spirits of this economy. That term was first used by John Maynard Keynes. Here’s what he said about animal spirits:

Even apart from the instability due to speculation, there is the instability due to the characteristic of human nature that a large proportion of our positive activities depend on spontaneous optimism rather than mathematical expectations, whether moral or hedonistic or economic. Most, probably, of our decisions to do something positive, the full consequences of which will be drawn out over many days to come, can only be taken as the result of animal spirits—a spontaneous urge to action rather than inaction, and not as the outcome of a weighted average of quantitative benefits multiplied by quantitative probabilities.

In other words, good things happen when people are optimistic. There’s no greater salesman of economic optimism than Larry Kudlow. Sandra Smith’s interview of Mr. Kudlow has me believing that robust long-term economic growth isn’t just possible. It’s likely. Watch this interview:

The only other guy who rivals Mr. Kudlow in terms of economic optimism is his old partner in crime in the Reagan administration, Art Laffer. One thing that I don’t want to overlook in the interview is what Kudlow said about the fundamentals in place. Regulations are reasonable. Taxes, which leads to capital formation, which leads to job creation, are low. The energy sector has been unleashed. Consumer confidence is high. Capital that spent its time on the sidelines during the Obama administration is rushing back into the United States in the hopes of increased return on investment. During periods in the Obama administration, investors were sometimes happy with a return of its investment.

Early in the interview, Mr. Kudlow summed things up beautifully by saying “My hunch is that it’s going to go on for quite awhile.” This of things contributing to this strong economy that Mr. listed was fairly lengthy. Anyone mistaking the Trump economy with the Obama economy isn’t paying attention. The differences are night and day differences.

The thing that’s getting more play at the DFL convention than expected is that Erin Murphy’s momentum is real and that she might win the DFL endorsement. Tonight, Murphy announced that she’d been endorsed by OutfrontAction via this tweet:


A quick glimpse at OutFrontAction’s about us webpage identifies which identity group OutfrontAction represents:

OutFront Minnesota’s mission is to create a state where lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people are free to be who they are, love who they love, and live without fear of violence, harassment or discrimination. We envision a state where LGBTQ individuals have equal opportunities, protection and rights. We are working toward the day when all Minnesotans have the freedom, power and confidence to make the best choices for their own lives.

There’s little question whether this is an important endorsement the night before the DFL endorses a gubernatorial candidate. That isn’t the same as saying this is a winning issue in a general election. It isn’t. Compare that with the top contenders’ issue pages. Check out how substantive Jeff Johnson’s issues page is. Then compare the DFL candidates’ pages with Tim Pawlenty’s issues page.

The difference between the Republicans’ issues pages and the DFL candidates’ issues pages isn’t a fair fight. Murphy doesn’t have an issues page. Instead, she calls her page her Vision page. On that page, she talks about single-payer “health care, equity & justice, economic justice, reproductive justice, immigration and mining.”

On immigration, Murphy says this:

Minnesota must be a state where all of our neighbors are treated with respect and dignity. It’s also critical for our future; we need the hard work and bright ideas of people all over the world to build our economy. That’s why, as a state, we must unite against efforts by the federal government to attack immigrants living in Minnesota. Our communities must be strong, safe, and welcoming.

  • I support drivers licenses for all, an initiative that keeps our roads safe while ensuring that people are able to get to work or take their child to the doctor and school.
  • Our state and law enforcement must not serve as an extension of ICE, nor should Minnesota prisons be used as detention centers.

In other words, Murphy supports Minnesota becoming a sanctuary state. In terms of mining, here’s part of what Murphy says:

I’ll protect our state from corporate interests that seek to weaken our permitting process for their financial gain. We see these efforts both at the state and federal level. I’ve voted against them repeatedly, and would continue to oppose them if the science is not sound.

Although we often focus on mining, in Minnesota, we are hard on our water – with agriculture, with overdevelopment, with road salt, and with manufacturing. So it’s imperative we invest in the research already taking place at the Natural Resources and Research Institute at UMD around advanced filtration, reverse osmosis, and other ways to clean impaired waters. As governor I would ensure that we invest in that research more heavily to protect and repair water, regardless of the project.

In short, Murphy will be a friend of environmental activists. This has long-reaching effects. It affects farmers, miners, construction workers and cities building wastewater treatment plants. It isn’t a stretch to say that environmental activists would have too much influence in our lives if Murphy was elected.