James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

EPA carbon ruling creates an even bigger ‘uncertainty tax’ for business

Dec 7, 2009 20:41 UTC

Call it the Uncertainty Tax. I mean, it is not enough that the American private sector has to deal with the mercurial state of healthcare, financial and tax reform, now it has to calculate the likelihood and impact of  the Obama administration unilaterally imposing draconian carbon rules? Even the EPA calls such efforts inefficient and economically disruptive. A few other thoughts:

1) Expect loads of litigation.

2) Don’t expect this to nudge Congress into passing cap-and-trade in 2010.

3)  Did I mention loads of litigation?

4)  It this looks likely, Congress would probably strip the EPA of its authority to do so.

5)  If Congress does not act, this could be the beginning of a multi-year effort  to regulate climate emissions. So more uncertainty.

James Pethokoukis is the money and politics columnist/blogger for Reuters Breakingviews. Previously, he was the economics columnist for U.S. News & World Report where he wrote the monthly Capital Commerce magazine column. Pethokoukis was also the managing editor of the magazine’s Money & Business section. He has written for many publications including the New York Times, the American, USA Today, Investor’s Business Daily, and TCS Daily. Pethokoukis is also an official CNBC contributor and appears frequently on that network’s Kudlow & Company, Power Lunch, and The Call shows. In addition, he has appeared numerous times on MSNBC, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, CNN, and Nightly Business Report on PBS. A 1989 graduate of Northwestern University where he double majored in Soviet politics and American history and a 1991 graduate of the Medill School of Journalism, Pethokoukis is a 2002 Jeopardy! champion.james.pethokoukis@thomsonreuters.com

COMMENT

The Obama administration is perhaps most remarkable for how it has emboldened the rest of the extreme left. Pelosi and Reid attempt to shove through outrageously dangerous legislation knowing that the anti-American, anti-business president will eagerly sign it. The spokewoman for the EPA could barely mask her glee that this unelected group would soon be forcing draconian regulations on industry and homeowners.

Since the release of the climategate emails the left has confirmed that they are unconcerned with facts or consequences. They march on unashamed with their plan to halt progress and punish success.

Posted by Pat Duggan | Report as abusive

Cost-benefit analysis of jobs stimulus

Dec 7, 2009 17:23 UTC

Hopefully any new plan will have a better ROI than the current stimulus package. Economic analyst  Ed Yardeni runs the numbers:

The Obama Administration is touting that their stimulus program has saved or created 640,329 jobs since it was enacted back in February through the end of October. This number is updated and posted on the Administration’s recovery.gov web site. That amounts to $246,436 per job based on the $157.8bn that has been awarded so far! Total compensation earned by the average payroll employee during October, on an annualized basis, was $59,867. If the government had simply used the funds awarded so far to pay for a year’s worth of labor, that would have paid for 2.6mn jobs!

James Pethokoukis is the money and politics columnist/blogger for Reuters Breakingviews. Previously, he was the economics columnist for U.S. News & World Report where he wrote the monthly Capital Commerce magazine column. Pethokoukis was also the managing editor of the magazine’s Money & Business section. He has written for many publications including the New York Times, the American, USA Today, Investor’s Business Daily, and TCS Daily. Pethokoukis is also an official CNBC contributor and appears frequently on that network’s Kudlow & Company, Power Lunch, and The Call shows. In addition, he has appeared numerous times on MSNBC, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, CNN, and Nightly Business Report on PBS. A 1989 graduate of Northwestern University where he double majored in Soviet politics and American history and a 1991 graduate of the Medill School of Journalism, Pethokoukis is a 2002 Jeopardy! champion.james.pethokoukis@thomsonreuters.com

COMMENT

I agree with the above post, and the post above that. I highly doubt that jabs were actually considered with the health care.

Posted by josephmorris90 | Report as abusive

The TARP slush fund gets slushier

Dec 7, 2009 15:25 UTC

The New Normal may be a bummer, but it’s not life-threatening for the economy. The only systemic risk at the moment is the political prospects of Democratic incumbents on Capitol Hill. They dread standing for reelection in 2010 if the unemployment rate remains anywhere near double digits. The forthcoming jobs bill is a product of political panic. And using TARP to pay for it confirms the fears of those back in the fall of 2008 who thought the bank bailout fund would eventually become a political slush fund.

Tea Party fever! This can’t be good for the Republican brand …

Dec 7, 2009 13:52 UTC

From pollster Rasmussen:

Running under the Tea Party brand may be better in congressional races than being a Republican.

In a three-way Generic Ballot test, the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds Democrats attracting 36% of the vote. The Tea Party candidate picks up 23%, and Republicans finish third at 18%. Another 22% are undecided.

Among voters not affiliated with either major party, the Tea Party comes out on top. Thirty-three percent (33%) prefer the Tea Party candidate, and 30% are undecided. Twenty-five percent (25%) would vote for a Democrat, and just 12% prefer the GOP.

Among Republican voters, 39% say they’d vote for the GOP candidate, but 33% favor the Tea Party option.

COMMENT

Mr Austria,
Re moneterism I was referring to Peth’s preferences which are heavily oriented towards supply side and Friedman worship,not yours. As for the Austrian school I was suggesting keeping its adherents as far way from actual power and contrained solely in blogs like say Mish Shedlock’s as possible. Austrian school stuff is not irrelevant but small doses preferable to the massive doses some ideologues would like.

Posted by Chi Democrat | Report as abusive
  •