By Steve Parkhurst, Senior Editor, US Daily Review.
Sometimes government is so big and burdensome that it can not win for losing. I do not feel sorry for government though; it created its own problems, while names may change, the behemoth doing the strangling stays the same.
In this instance I’m referring to the federal government’s decision (more like forced with no other choice) to eliminate some $10 billion in regulations that cost businesses inAmerica. $10 billion might sound like a great number when we hear the word “cut”, until you consider that the federal government currently costs businesses $1.75 trillion in compliance with regulations – so we’re talking about half of 1% of the current cost to businesses. To further add insult to injury, the $10 billion will not be eliminated all at once, but will instead be phased out…over 5 years.
Well, ok, 5 years is ok if that’s the best we can do, right? Wrong. New regulations are in the pipeline, ready to penalize, punish and delay new and existing small business owners. When discussing figures like $10 billion and $1.75 trillion, one would think we’re talking about real value, but we are not talking about real value, we are talking about expenses to businesses that have nothing to do with hiring, buying new products or building an addition to an existing structure.
We live in rough economic times, and that is putting it very mildly for some. It occurs to me that the best thing to do in times like these is for government entities to ask, “Is what we’re doing really needed?” I realize a lot of agencies are following their duties, sometimes as written into laws, and while we could talk about proposing changes to laws on the books now, the way government operates – we do not have that kind of time to waste.
Now is the time for the agencies to seek to reform themselves from within. Managers from all departments within each agency need to meet and go over their responsibilities. If any manager ever thinks, “I believe my department does that as well”, right there, the managers need to find out if there is duplication of services or functions.
The IRS recently, according to the Obama Administration, announced it would eliminate 55 million hours in annual paperwork burdens (their word, not mine) by making some changes; one of which is to streamline various tax forms. I have to wonder, why have we not been eliminating 1 million hours in paperwork burdens for each of the last several years?
The Administration is offering too little, too late in my opinion. If they had been serious about reforms, they took office in January 2009, 31 months ago, that was a good time for evaluations – or did they need things to stay the same for a while so they could continue to say, “we inherited” and “the previous Administration”?
The current Administration’s efforts are cute, but they are not enough, I don’t even think they are a start. In fact, with regulations “in the pipeline” as referenced earlier, if you do the math; with the $1.75 trillion referenced earlier, subtract the $10 billion in savings, you arrive at $1.74 trillion. And if the “pipeline” additions, specifically with regard to the ozone layer and air quality, total $10 billion or more, we are back where we started, and maybe even worse off.
The American people do not have the time or patience for anymore blame, anymore games, anymore excuses or anymore lack of accountability – make things happen, now. There is a great nation out there, waiting for signs of stability before they unleash their talents, their innovations and their can-do American spirit. Let us get government out of the way, let us relegate government back to being a partner in America’s success, instead of a detriment to it.