Mike hits one so far out of the park that it can only be compared to an old Comiskey Park roofshot from the likes of Greg Luzinski. I can add nothing to it.

Michael Mandel handed glibertarians some first-class wanking material when he wrote a paper arguing that the real problem with the post-millennium economy has been…drum roll… too much regulation. Of course, common sense tells us that the banking/lending industries were, if anything, almost totally unregulated. But it's hard to dispute the hard facts, which Mr. Mandel happily provides:

Wow! Hard to argue with that. Unless, of course, one bothers to peer a little more deeply into those Dudley & Warren BEA numbers Mandel cites:


  • It's fascinating that the art of just making shit up requires so many props. Graphs, statistics, the carefully -constructed sets and surgeries of the media bagmen and bagwomen, entire industries devoted to decorating the shit they make up. But it's like they're not even trying anymore. It's all chintz and cheaply gilded plaster.

  • CaffinatedOne says:

    Not only that, but by charting it as a share of private sector employment, they get the extra bonus of a nice bump due to the unemployment jump due to the collapse of the housing bubble (as noted, ironically, due to the lack of meaningful regulation).

  • Heh, thanks. The original research was done for Progressive Policy Institute, a leading "Third Way" Democratic think tank.

    I found the 0.1% group – which is actually 0.002% if you control for labor force – in non-homeland the most interesting because it's almost entirely staffing up FDA, patent offices, and nuclear energy regulators. Maybe those things need to be staffed better, maybe they need to have an extended mission, but it's a more fascinating conversation than "Regulators = bad for the economy."

    George W. Bush thought the weak recovery in the early 2000s was because of "SEC Overreach" and wanted to react accordingly, according to Paul O'Neill's book. I think that's about all we need to know for this line of argument.

  • c u n d gulag says:

    Wow! The things they can do with an "Etch-a-Sketch" these days!!!
    If you're a Conservative trying to make a point (one that's not on your head), you can 'etch' a graph, and when you're proven to be a complete lying imbecile, shake, and start over!

  • After 9/11, Bush moved the investigators of white collar crime into ant-terrorism work. However, he refused to replace these transfered investigators. This and deregulation led to the white collar crime wave.

  • Mmm, good stuff. But I wish someone knowledgeable would make such a chart for drug/device recalls since the crippling of the FDA. For years I was on their mailing list of notifications for noncompliance (monitored but not stopped), recalls, and challenges. Guess when those numbers boomed?

    Deregulation is a win-win for drug companies. Instead of proper and sufficient testing before selling their products, they release things on the market prematurely (from drugs to artificial hips to radiation-emitting contrast material) and earn profits from the guinea pigs who test their products: the customers.

  • The Man, The Myth says:

    Over and over again: the Federal Government is not hiring new college graduates as they did at rates in the 70s and 80s. Its practically impossible to get a job as full time permanent. Anyone ever see the KSA (knowledge and skill assessment) on a Federal Job? They want you to know how to do the job – you don't always learn those skills in school. Some of the questions have to do with specific regulations, "have you ever written reports about (xxx regulation) ? Most people do not have a chance to work specifically on a regulation like that until they are in the work place! Therefor I simply do not see how these jobs are ever filled. I've been applying for positions for a year and a half and they send out two emails: "Notice of Delivery" after I apply for a position and "Notice of Qualification" that says, "you are not qualified for this position." According to the announcement I qualified under education (Masters). These are all auto-generated emails with no human being available to explain what is going on. Its very frustrating… /end rant

  • I suspect that when the KSA is written that specifically they already have someone internal in mind for the position and they are advertising the position because the regulations say they have to.

  • Monkey Business says:

    I have yet to hear a cogent argument for deregulation ever being a good thing.

    Yes, it allows businesses to operate more freely and reduces compliance overhead. However, those businesses are very rarely interested in the health and safety of their customers, and will do whatever they deem necessary to increase profits.

    Rules exist to save us from ourselves. Regulation exists to check the worst impulses of corporations.

  • An increase from 0.13% to 0.26% over fifty years? O horror! Will nothing stop the advance of Big Gubmint? At this rate, the number of Federal regulatory employees will reach 1% of the private sector employment by 2294!

  • When deregulation was sold, I kinda' expected more streamlined paperwork, without a substantial quality reduction. Should not have been surprised when the bushies did the opposite.

  • I am left with two choices here:

    1.) Those who chose to quote Mark Twain (quoting Disraeli) without attribution need a literary regulatory regime installed here at G&T.

    2.) They and all the other really smart Leftist people who live here at G&T all knew it was M.T. and they didn't need to cite him.


    "Figures often beguile me, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."

    – Mark Twain's Own Autobiography: The Chapters from the North American Review

  • @bb: that would be p. 228 of the recently published Autobiography of Mark Twain. I always considered that this blog was free of the most rigorous scholarly trappings while not compromising intellectual honesty. A fine arrangement, IMHO.

  • One thing that the chart says to me is that we are living in a creeping police state. My first thought when the annouced the formation of the dept. of homeland security was that we now had our own version of the KGB(GRU or whatever).

  • @Drouse:

    We have had a police state — not just a creeping one — for quite some time. Just ask Brandon Mayfield, who was falsely imprisoned under accusations of train-bombing terrorism in Madrid spun out of whole cloth, despite constant assurances from the spanish authorities that we had the wrong guy. Or the middle-eastern student that found an FBI tracking device planted on the undercarriage of his car, posted pictures of it online, then had the FBI basically threaten to disappear him if he didn't give it back immediately.

    But, much like the TSA stuff going on right no, nobody gives a shit unless it affects them personally. How did that old poem go? First they came for the communists, and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist…

  • Well, let's not be sloppy, then.

    Kiskis, Michael J. (1990). Mark Twain’s Own Autobiography: The Chapters from the North American Review. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.

    But, seriously, it's obvious that bb has made a resounding case for the hypocrisy of the left while pointing out that regulation is actually bad since a strawman clearly shows that we might not always like the regulation: And at the end of the day, what we like trumps what makes sense.

  • Jimcat: my thoughts exactly. Doubling an insignificant number leaves you with….an insignificant number. But "OMG THE GRAPH IS GOING UPWARDS THIS IS BAD NEWS"

  • That's what is always dependable from the Left…no shred of a sense of humor.

    Y'all are probably dead on correct.

    I have no axe to grind on regulation. I think the problem is finding the right level.

    My religious and philosophical bent is that people's tendency (including me) free from guiding principles will be to go wrong, do wrong, and stay wrong.


  • @Kong

    You pretty much hit the nail on the head. I saw it happening all the time when working for a state government department a few years ago. It's not only done to help other government employees in general, but also to benefit employees in the same department.

    In saying that, the people making the decision on who to employ have to quantify why applicants were successful in getting an interview or the position, as well as why others weren't successful (transparency and all that). If you don't have some very specific criteria, you can't quickly weed out CVs to get a shortlist, which is important when you have hundreds of applications. Not liking the comic sans they used or the clip art in their CV just doesn't cut it, unfortunately…

  • I am left to wonder, if leftists lack a sense of humour, how ed manages to be so fucking funny. Daily.
    Dryden? Elder f? Jzb? Yeah, none of those guys are consistently hilarious. Good point.

  • eau:

    All you cite are very funny – when they are serving it up.

    Your side (not necessarily the aforementioned) is notoriously thin skinned when on the receiving end of barbs, jabs, and even gentle tweaks like I delivered on Mark Twain.


  • Holy shit, bb. I just don't know what to say. MY side? Notoriously? I gotta give it to you, you are a fucking riot!

  • Sadly, I don't think the knowledge that their actions are based on lies — either in the public sphere, or in their own personal behavior — will change anything.

    They make decisions based on fear and greed. Only on fear and greed…

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