Jane Chastain : Politically Direct

Archive for the ‘Regulations’ Category

Trump and the Fire Swamp

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Donald Trump went to Washington promising to drain the swamp.  The swamp is winning.  That’s because it is a lot more complicated than simply pulling the plug and watching the whole mess go down the drain.

No, the swamp in Washington is more like the fictional fire swamp in the movie “The Princess Bride.”   Washington, like the swamp in this movie classic, has three elements:  the fire (obvious), lighting sand (dryer and quicker than quicksand) and the dreaded R.O.U.S. (rodents of unusual size).  Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Jane Chastain

August 23rd, 2017 at 5:30 pm

Report Card on President Trump’s First 12 Days

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Hate him or love him, you must admit that President Trump has been working overtime to do the things he believes will make this country great again.   In his first 11 days,  he has signed more executive actions that any other president in modern history.  In addition, he rounded out his cabinet, held meetings with business and union leaders, spent hours in person or on the phone with world leaders and gave us a Supreme Court nominee.

President’s can’t make law.  Therefore, Trump will have to depend on Congress to see that his major policy proposals become reality.  However, presidents have wide discretion how our laws are implemented and many of his moves have already changed the status quo.

Some initial actions are perfunctory and done by every president.   Therefore, for this report card I am focusing only on those that have a direct bearing on policy.

Cabinet Picks —  Tells us a lot about how serious a president is about keeping his campaign promises.  Trump’s picks, unlike Obama’s policy wonks, have real world experience.  They have achieved tremendous success and are willing to give the agencies they run the benefit of that experience.  Others such as Jeff Sessions and Betsy DeVos have spent years working to advance the policies on which Trump campaigned.

Grade A+

Executive Order 13765  —   Minimizes the economic effects of Obamacare by directing federal agencies to give states, insurance companies and consumers the maximum amount of flexibility in complying with the law.  Trump is laying down a marker that he intends to see Obamacare repealed and replaced.

Grade A

Presidential Memorandum:  Withdrawal from the Trans Pacific Partnership — Trump is making good on his promise to negotiate trade deals to make sure they are both fair and profitable.

Grade A

Presidential Memorandum:  Mexico City Policy — Trump not only reimplemented the policy put in place by President Reagan that prevents our tax money from going to overseas family planning agencies that perform abortions, he expanded it.

Grade A+

Presidential Memorandums on the Keystone and Dakota Access Pipelines — Ordered agencies involved to expedite these projects.  Also ordered the Department of Commerce to review ways to mandate the use of American-made steel in all pipeline projects in the U.S.

Grade A+

Executive Order 13766  — Expedited Environmental Reviews for Infrastructure Projects.  Remember all those “shovel-ready” jobs that Obama promised?  By the time they saw the light of day they were loaded down with millions of dollars of bureaucratic waste.

Grade A

Presidential Memorandum:  Streamlining Permitting and Reducing Regulatory Burdens for Domestic Manufacturing — The first step to bringing manufacturing back to the U.S.

Grade A+

Executive Order 13767:  Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements —

Build the wall and hire more border security officers.

Grade A+

Executive Order 13768: Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior — Cuts off federal funds to Sanctuary Cities and gives immigrations officers the authority to deport any noncitizen judged to be a threat to pubic safety.

Grade A+

Executive Order: Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States  —  Immediate travel ban for the seven countries judged to be most dangerous for 90 days until we can reform the vetting process. Despite what you may have heard, the threat from refugees is real.  Since September 11, 2001, at least 40 people admitted to the U.S. as refugees have been implicated in terrorism. http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/08/10/jeff-sessions-highlights-20-vetted-terrorist-refugees-obama-ramps-admissions-terror-hot-spots/ Trump was criticized for not giving our security agencies time to thoroughly brief all those involved with implementing this order.  However, this would have leaked and given those intent on doing us harm an opportunity to sneak in before the ban.  There was no perfect way to do this without inconveniencing the people affected by the ban.

Grade B

National Security Presidential Memorandum 1: Rebuilding the U.S. Armed Forces —Pentagon and Office of Management and Budget are to come up with a plan to bolster the military, examine our nuclear arsenal and missile-defense capabilities.

Grade A

National Security Presidential Memorandum 3 — Plan to Defeat ISIS to be delivered in 30 days

Grade A

Executive Order:  Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs —  Requires agencies to rescind two regulations for every new one.  Total cost of all new regulations for 2017, including those repealed, to be 0.

Grade A+

The Nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court —  Another campaign promise delivered.  He picked this nominee from the list he presented to the voters which he compiled with the help of the Federalist Society.  Indications are that Judge Gorsuch is a strict constructionist in the mold of Antonin Scalia but only time will tell.

Grade Incomplete

Written by Jane Chastain

February 1st, 2017 at 5:30 pm

The Democrats Terrible, Tumultuous Temper Tantrums

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The hallmark of democratic governments is the smooth transition of power from one duly elected leader and duly elected legislature to the next.  Never before in our history have we seen an outgoing president and the leaders of his losing political party so hellbent on tripping up those who will succeed them.

Obama set the stage by inviting the president-elect to the White House for a friendly chat and then snatching the welcome matt right from under his feet as he was leaving the White House.

After jetting off to Hawaii for another luxury vacation, costing taxpayer millions of $$$ ( http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/dec/22/obamas-hawaii-christmas-vacations-cost-taxpayers-3/), it became obvious that Obama left land mines for his successor, hoping they will blow up during some portion of  Trump’s initial stay in the White House.  Between rounds of golf, he gave orders to throw Israel under the bus at the United Nations.  He expelled 35 Russian diplomats.  He used an arcane statue to block oil drilling in much of the Arctic and portions of the Atlantic Ocean in an obvious attempt to keep Trump from making good on his promise to use all available fuel reserves and take actions to allow more off-shore drilling.  He used another arcane statue to grab 1.6 million acres of valuable land in Utah and Nevada, two states that helped put Trump over the top.

Obama is going to extreme lengths to make it difficult for Trump to roll back job killing federal regulations that have been crippling economic growth by releasing hundreds more in the waning days of his administration.  Word Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Jane Chastain

January 4th, 2017 at 5:30 pm

The Best News out of Iowa

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The best news out of Iowa is not that Ted Cruz won or that Donald Trump’s political gamble of skipping the last debate, like a sulking child, likely cost him a win there.

It’s not that the long predicted surge of Marco Rubio finally happened.

No, the best news out of Iowa is that a candidate who had the courage to boldly proclaim his opposition to federal mandates and subsidies for ethanol — which comes from corn — the top crop in the state, actually won there.

Be it Ted Cruz or Joe Blow, it turned the conventional political wisdom on its head.  It proves that you don’t have to pander to get elected.  If you are willing to make the case that these government handouts keep you under the thumb of Washington and wind up hurting everyone, eventually enough reasonable people will listen. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Jane Chastain

February 3rd, 2016 at 3:30 pm

Obama Surrenders to Iran; Boehner Surrenders to Obama

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave John Boehner a lesson in leadership by risking his political career to come here to address a joint session of Congress. In that speech, Netanyahu made a compelling case for our country standing up to Iran over nuclear weapons.

With the Israeli election just two weeks away, Netanyahu faced enormous pressure in Israel and here in the United States from those urging him to stay home. Nevertheless, he threw caution to the wind and used his time to lecture Barack Obama on the dangers of striking a dangerous deal with Iran which will allow that country to remain a hair’s breadth away from becoming a nuclear power and essentially get nothing in return.

Unfortunately, this lesson was lost on Boehner. Shortly after Netanyahu left the House Chamber, Boehner offered his unconditional surrender to Barack Obama over his illegal amnesty and, in return, got nothing, nada, zilch! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Jane Chastain

March 4th, 2015 at 5:30 pm


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