With another 428,000 new unemployment filings last week, the flood of bad economic news continues to point to a recessionary double dip that President Obama’s $859 billion stimulus program was promised to prevent. And let’s not forget that, while Obama and a Democratic Congress were pump-priming as never before, Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke was injecting another $1.6 trillion in freshly printed bills into the economy. Surely now the Keynesian belief that massive government spending is the way to ignite economic growth during a recession has been utterly and forever discredited.
But a congressional report released last week added another layer of explanation for the abject failure of Obamanomics since 2009. Along with the explosion of federal spending, Obama directed his appointees at key federal departments and agencies to embark on an unprecedented expansion of bureaucratic regulation. Thousands of new bureaucrats were hired at places like the Department of Heath and Human Services and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and legions of costly new regulations soon poured forth.
“The Obama Administration has created a regulatory environment that is suffocating America’s entrepreneurs’ ability to create jobs and grow businesses, … This regulatory tsunami has caused job creators to lock down at a time when we need them to expand. The committee has found that the problems created by this regulatory tsunami goes far beyond the cost of the regulations themselves, but also include breakdowns in the regulatory process itself that is having a severe impact on large and small businesses alike.”