by Jon Sanders
Director of the Center for Food, Power, and Life, Research Editor | John Locke Foundation
Today’s newsletter discusses the obliteration of commerce wrought by overregulation, big and small. The small include a handful of state and local regulatory actions in recent news. The big include a finding by Appalachian State’s John Dawson and N.C. State’s John Seater that “GDP at the end of 2011 would have been $53.9 trillion instead of $15.1 trillion if [federal] regulation had remained at its 1949 level”:
they show the U.S. economy has red-taped itself out of nearly $40 trillion in GDP and left itself with a mere $15 trillion. Our economy could be four times bigger. We could be four times wealthier.
What innovations do we not have? What technologies do we not enjoy? We cannot know what isn’t in place because we don’t know of all the places that there could be.
And because I am an economist with a background in English literature, which in the past has caused me to quote Chaucer in discussing short-term lending and C.S. Lewis in discussing regulatory rigmarole, I reference Shakespeare and Michael Ende’s The NeverEnding Story in talking about the void left from overregulation.