New GOP Lie: Regulations are the Problem

More of this doesn’t help

Jon already noted the falsity of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s (R-La.) assertion that regulations were responsible for the Bush administration’s failed response to Hurricane Katrina. So why did Jindal, who later admitted things didn’t exactly happen the way he said they did in his rebuttal to Pres. Obama’s “state of the union” speech, go there?

According to a local editorial, written presciently before either speech, Republicans intend to use stimulating the economy as an excuse to gut regulations. And loosening regulations, if anyone remembers, is at the heart of the economic problem. Anne Schindler, in Folio Weekly, a northeast Florida alternative weekly whose articles are unfortunately not available online, detailed how Republican legislators in Florida are making the same play.

Lobbyists’ arguments are simple, if a bit non-linear: Though regulations have nothing to do with the collapsing real estate market, developers want to ease regulations in order to kickstart business

While lawmakers desperately plug budget holes and draft legislation aimed at restarting Florida’s failing economy, development lobbyists are descending on Tallahassee…[Their] argument is simple, if a bit non-linear: Though regulations have nothing to do with the collapsing real estate market, developers want to ease regulations in order to kickstart business.

…Lobbyists working for Associated Industries…[are] distributing a booklet titled “Economic Stimulus Package 2.0,” which calls for “reductions in regulatory red tape as a way to stimulate business activity.” What kind of “red tape” do they want to hack through?

You can guess. Schindler goes on to enumerate bills that would eliminate impact fees, which help switch the burdens of infrastructure needed for new development from the taxpayers to the speculators, and builders who propose to “streamline” environmental permitting, which is Republican-speak for “Let the party start.” But, she says, these modest government measures are not the problem.

To be clear: Florida’s economic woes have nothing to do with gopher tortoise protections or wetland buffers. They stem from plummeting home prices and tightening credit…

There are currently some 300,000 vacant homes and hundreds of unoccupied strip malls in Florida. There is also a staggering backlog of already permitted but not-built homes…Adding to that glut by building more homes is not the way to climb out of Florida’s economic quagmire. Neither is dismantling the state’s few and fragile regulatory protections.”

But such facts won’t stop Republicans, like Bobby Jindal, from using the economic crisis to make power grabs. Greed is not hindered by details like the truth. It’s up to us to remain vigilant and on-message and make sure their attempts fail.


  • JessWonderin
    March 1, 2009 - 1:37 pm | Permalink

    It’s not so much to the effort to “dismantle regulations” as it is to shift the result and responsibility/problems to the taxpayers and off the developers bottom line . . .

    Let the future taxpayers deal with it . . . it is the usual Republican-business short term gain goal at the expense of America’s future . . .

  • Paco
    March 1, 2009 - 6:01 pm | Permalink

    Trying to make sense of the conservative mind is a project that can lead to insanity.

    However, it seems as though much of their success has come from telling people what they wanted to hear. There is no need for taxes, or for regulations or for any constraints on how good people should behave. If you are a good conservative then you can do anything you want, because you are a good guy. You can do no wrong.

    Not so with those liberal bad guys. We have to keep them under control. Watch out for liberals. Nothing good can come from their corner. Just stay faithful to us good guy conservatives.

    This line of garbage seemed to sell all through the last few decades, but it is not selling so well any more. The reality of a collapsing economy has made people wake up and smell the coffee and maybe the smelling salts. Maybe these conservative wing-nuts don’t really have all the answers.

  • John Kooms
    March 1, 2009 - 10:06 pm | Permalink

    ” The arsonists ( Republicans ) are now standing in the middle of the road trying to block the fire truck and keep it from getting to the fire ” , run them over !

  • chabuka
    March 2, 2009 - 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Are they really that stupid..? Or is it just a matter of greed and selfishness…?
    The problem is, that most of the kool-aide drinkers that are so ignorantly supporting these Republikans are willingly taking the cups of kool-aide that is heavily laced with the strychnine….it will kill them..but they are true believers..!

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