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A single bureaucratic regulator inclines, unsurprisingly, not to the public’s interest but to its own. Indeed, that’s long been the complaint about the state insurance commissioners, who have prevented a national market for insurance from developing. When state regulators control prices and terms within their own jurisdictions, companies have no option for relief from excessive and ill-conceived regulation short of abandoning doing business there.
On the other hand, if regulators at different governmental levels are required to compete — as under an optional chartering system — businesses can hold regulators accountable by choosing which to be governed by.
WHERE THERE is a system of true interstate competition among regulators, as opposed to a feudal system of regulatory fiefdoms, a national market emerges. Consumers will hold regulators accountable for their policies by purchasing products from companies governed by consumer-friendly regulators — wherever those products originate.
Until the recent banking crisis, there was widespread consensus that the regulatory competition created by optional bank chartering had served consumers well. Predictably, politicians are using the banking crisis as an excuse to expand their power.
Worse, perhaps, politicians and bureaucrats are using fallacious arguments against regulatory competition as a way of avoiding their own responsibility for the current crisis, which was caused by the worst monetary policy since the Great Depression.
Regulatory competition isn’t the problem; it’s an immense and important part of the solution.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?
H/T to National Review Online