18 Feb '12, 11am
The Economist uses stale right-wing ideas to attack government regulation
settles on a series of unfortunate recommendations. Let’s start with the championing of sunset provisions: “All big regulations should also come with sunset clauses, so that they expire after, say, 10 years unless Congress explicitly reauthorizes them.” But the same pages contain a plea against involving Congress in rules, as they rightly criticize the REINS Act: “Passed by the House, it would involve Congress more heavily in rulemaking. If there is a body worse than the executive agencies at this kind of thing, it is Congress.” The magazine also seems to realize another problem: “Lastly, automatic ‘sunsets’ of laws have their fans, though Congress could mindlessly reauthorize laws gathered up in omnibus bills (and a bitterly divided Congress might allow good laws to lapse).” The magazine has laid out some of the important arguments against one of its key recommendations.