Betsy Morris, a writer based in San Francisco, has a number of questions that serious people should answer before using (legitimately medicinal) experimental drugs. Her questions are from her article (from which this post’s title came) in Friday‘s Wall Street Journal. As a serious person (don‘t laugh so loudly), I have answers.
Not some government personnel saying they’re from the government; they are the government. The People’s Republic of China plans to form a new government entity whose purpose, ostensibly, is to help out the PRC’s economic private sector.
[The PRC’s] National Development and Reform Commission, the country’s top economic planner, said Monday that it would set up a bureau to coordinate policies across different government bodies and help development of the private economy, the source of most of the new jobs and economic dynamism in the country.
This says it all, though:
That’s the position of the Pennsylvania Progressive-Democratic Party’s Representative G Roni Green. She’s proposing, with an absolutely straight face, a State law that would require businesses with 500 or more employees to cut their employees’ 5-day, 40-hour work week to 4-day, 32-hour work weeks—with no change in pay. That’s a government-mandated 25% pay raise.
Jobs welfare doesn’t get much better than that.
Green’s rationalization centers on two premises. One is that society looks and operates differently than it once did in 1938 (when the government-mandated 40-hour work week was enacted). That’s true enough. Society has grown more complex, more technologically capable, and consumers’ needs (consumers being, after all, at the core of society) have grown quite a bit.
An increasing number of States are looking at passing laws blocking third-graders who can’t read (well enough) from being passed on to fourth grade.
Tennessee, Michigan, and North Carolina are among at least 16 states that have tried in recent years to use reading tests and laws requiring students to repeat third grade to improve literacy. Louisiana, Arkansas, Alabama, and Nevada have all passed similar laws that will go into effect in the coming years.
Those laws, too, typically include extra tutoring, summer school, and…teacher training (what a concept that last is).
The Wall Street Journal‘s editors’ headline and subheadline is on a reasonable track:
Punishing Banks for Regulatory Failure
Regulators want to saddle midsize banks with new capital rules.
The editors the proceed to disparage the regulators’ move, and they’re correct about that. They’re mistaken in their lede, though, and that leads them to the erroneous aspect of their disparagement:
Silicon Valley Bank failed owing to rising interest rates and lapses by regulators, not a shortage of capital.
It’s true that a shortage of capital did not cause SVB’s failure, except as the proximate outcome of the real cause of the failure, an outcome that made the failure inevitable.
…out loud, to coin a hackneyed, but cogent, phrase.
On the matter of Federal government industrial farm policy, the Biden administration has made itself crystalline. This is the backdrop:
In January 1994, the North American Free Trade Agreement went into effect, followed by other trade pacts, which significantly increased commercial opportunities for American farmers. Those arrangements have borne great fruit: US agriculture exports stood at $196 billion in 2022, up from $62.8 billion in 1997.
It seems a Wisconsin man owns some property near Ixonia, and that property has been flooded, gets flooded fairly frequently, by the Rock River against which the man’s property lies. He’s gotten fed up with the airboats that go running across his land, taking advantage of its temporarily flooded condition, and he’s filed suit in Wisconsin’s Jefferson County Circuit Court to put an end to the practice.
When Congress passed and President Joe Biden (D) signed the recent debt ceiling bill, one of the items included was a requirement for construction on the Mountain Valley Pipeline to proceed to completion and for the pipeline to begin operation. In conjunction with that, the bill removed from lower courts their jurisdiction over questions regarding the natural gas pipeline.
The Fourth Circuit, when “environmentalists” got their cases to it, blocked construction while it sorted out whether it could rule on the matter.
The Supreme Court has sorted the matter out for the Fourth Circuit, at least temporarily: the pipeline will be completed with no further delay; the Court has lifted the Circuit’s stay.
Some academics object to Texas’ Republican Governor Greg Abbott moving to ban TikTok from Texas government devices and from personal devices used to conduct Texas official business. Texas’ legislature passed the bill creating the ban, and Abbott signed it into law last December. Now a New York State-headquartered organization, ironically named The Knight First Amendment Institute, which is a facility of New York City’s Columbia University, is suing Abbott among other governors, over the ban, claiming free speech violations.
The lawsuit said the state’s decision…is comprising teaching and research. And more specifically, it said it was “seriously impeding” faculty pursuing research into the app—including research that could illuminate or counter concerns about TikTok.
And too many laws. Jimmy Sexton, CEO of Esquire Group, is right about the rules.
More than 88,000 federal regulations were promulgated between 1995 and 2016, the most recent data I can find. The Federal Register, a compendium of each year’s new federal regulations, proposed rules and notices, totals nearly two million pages dating back to its inception in 1936. And the Code of Federal Regulations ran to 185,000 pages in 2020. In addition, state and local governments have their own laws and rules.
As he noted,
Laws should be easy to comply with and simple to enforce.