May 13, 2011
You're Paying an Invisible Tax
By James Wilson

You're paying an invisible tax -- the Regulation Tax. It has grown by two-thirds over the past ten years, and is now more than $15,000 per household.

The Federal State's price controls, paperwork, entry restrictions, environmental controls, and workplace regulations increase the prices you pay for everything you buy. These costs also discourage businesses from expanding and hiring. They often force lay-offs.

As the letter below indicates, the sheer size of the regulatory burden is shocking.

That's why I sent a letter to Congress telling them to cut the invisible Regulation Tax.

You may borrow from or copy this letter . . .

You should repeal as many regulations as you can, and abolish the unconstitutional regulatory agencies that are obstructing economic growth. Here's why . . .

A study by Nicole V. Crain and W. Mark Crain for the Small Business Administration estimates that federal regulations cost $1.752 trillion in 2008. (

* These costs are passed on to consumers, and average $15,586 per household
* This is an increase of over $5,000 since 2000

As Clyde Wayne Crews of CEI points out ( . . .

* Regulatory costs already equal 11.9% of GDP
* This almost twice the burden of the personal income tax
* There have been 38,700 new regulations since 2001, and the 2010 federal register had 81,405 pages -- a record
* These numbers DON'T include the looming regulatory tsunami that Obamacare and Dodd-Frank will cause
* And the costs of lost innovation and productivity are impossible to measure

Federal regulations hit small businesses especially hard, and make them less competitive. The Crains point out that regulations cost businesses with fewer than 20 employed about $10,500 per worker, compared to mid-$7,000s for larger companies.

How can our economy recover when the Federal State makes it so expensive to do business?

I will NOT be afraid if Congress immediately de-funds most regulatory agencies.

* Manufacturers and sellers already have an incentive to provide safe products, and respectable industries will maintain standards
* Firms who compete for employees already have an incentive to provide safe working conditions and good pay
* The courts will still punish negligence and fraud even without the regulatory apparatus

Regulations force businesses to divert resources to please bureaucrats INSTEAD of serving the best interests of customers. Moreover, complicated regulations provide greater opportunity for fraud. Free markets, on the other hand, promote transparency.

A market free from federal regulation will also create . . .

* More jobs
* Lower prices
* More money in my pocket
* Economic growth

Shrink the Regulatory State!


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James Wilson
Assistant Communications Director

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