The Mantra: “Job Killing Regulations”

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The Republican Party’s Favorite Mantra: “Job Killing Regulations

Where does that “mantra”  – job killing regulations – come from…?  After all,  like the flowers and bees, there are only a finite number of flowers (jobs) in any given field and sometimes there are more pollen gathering bees (workers) than flowers (jobs) when it comes to pollen gathering (employment)…

So, do regulations really kill job growth…?  Maybe, maybe not…

Like any ‘story’ there are usually two sides of it…

There are those who truly believe that any kind of regulation, when it comes to the workplace, do more harm than good…  And the opposite is true for those who believe regulations do not “kill jobs” but create more jobs…

For the most part, it can be shown that regulations do not “kill jobs” but have the opposite effect in that, as with any economy, when a specific business or trade goes by the wayside (i.e., is no longer viable or needed) there will be something that will take its place which in turn creates new opportunities for workers to learn a new job and once again be employed to contribute to society plus spend their money in the market place…

When that Guttenberg fellow came up with the idea of printing words on paper instead of laboriously writing them down by hand, sure it put those folks who scribed those letters by hand out of work, but by the same token it created more jobs… How…?  Well, someone had to make those printing presses, someone had to teach those out of work scribes how to use the new fangled machine to print out words, someone had to create a better quality paper to print those words on, more ink needed to be manufactured to use on the press and on and on it goes… Bottom line: Guttenberg didn’t put people out of work, he created more work for them…!

The cost of regulations is shared by all businesses in industry through that vehicle called “competition”…  If one business has to raise the prices of their product to comply with a new regulation, it is a sure bet that their competitor does, too…

A good example is from a study done and published in the Journal of Public Economics  by Eli Berman and Linda T. M. Bui who studied the debate on the increasing cost of environmental regulation on air quality in Los Angeles…  Their study found that there was no correlation between the cost of the air quality regulation enactment and the large decline of jobs in the area… They found that in fact the regulations may have increased labor demand by the companies who had to comply with the regulation because they needed folks to help them make sure they were indeed complying with the regulations…  The regulations didn’t effect just one company but many companies, so the competition level was increased between the companies affected by the regulations… [More examples are cited in “The Atlantic” magazine article: ‘Do Regulations Really Kill Jobs?’]

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