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Jeb Bush vs. Paul Krugman: What Do Economists Know About Regulation?

I believe the time has come for the Nobel Prize committee to consider rescinding Paul Krugman’s award. His columns in the New York Times are supposed to give us insights into public policy issues based on economics. But increasingly they ignore everything economists know. All too often they present viewpoints that are the opposite of what economists know.

Take government regulation of business. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Jeb Bush had this to say:

The increased cost of new regulations, in time and money, has been phenomenal.

According to the American Action Forum, since Mr. Obama took office, new regulations have resulted in an additional 443 million hours of paperwork each year for Americans. All told, according to the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s 2015 report on the federal regulatory state, regulations impose a $1.88 trillion silent tax on the U.S. economy each year—that’s nearly $15,000 per family. For every second of his presidency, Mr. Obama has added roughly $3,100 in regulatory burdens to the economy.

It’s time we did a better job regulating the regulators.

Who could quibble with that? Krugman for one. He begins last Friday’s column with this nugget:

The former president of a peanut company has been sentenced to 28 years in prison for knowingly shipping tainted products that later killed nine people and sickened 700.

John C. Goodman is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute, President of the Goodman Institute for Public Policy Research, and author of the widely acclaimed Independent books, A Better Choice: Healthcare Solutions for America, and the award-winning, Priceless: Curing the Healthcare Crisis. The Wall Street Journal and the National Journal, among other media, have called him the “Father of Health Savings Accounts.”

New from John C. Goodman!
A BETTER CHOICE: Healthcare Solutions for America
Obamacare remains highly controversial and faces ongoing legal and political challenges. Polls show that by a large margin Americans remain opposed to the healthcare law and seek to “repeal and replace” it. However, the question is: Replace it with what?

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