My testimony focuses on the Social Security program’s incentives—specifically, how the current structure provides disincentives to work and save. I will also discuss how Social Security reform, if done correctly, can increase US savings, labor force participation, economic growth, and federal revenues.
Good morning, Chairman Murray, Ranking Member Sessions, and members of the committee. Thank you for the chance to discuss the effect of tax increases and spending cuts on economic growth. I appreciate the opportunity to testify today.
There is insufficient effort to establish the current state of food safety practices and little to no connection is made between those practices and public health. The FDA has not even presented a careful economic modeling of what an optimal set of rules for food safety practices would look like. Rather, the FDA wants to impose a “shotgun” approach on all covered foods rather than one that focuses on those foods or farms that pose the greatest risks. The FDA has acknowledged that it is required by law, by the Food Safety Modernization Act, to pass these standards. However, it is also required by OMB guidelines to analyze options that are not currently legal so as to inform the President and Congress when there are more efficient ways of solving a particular social problem than Congress had envisioned. The FDA should rethink its proposed regulation since there is little to suggest that it is the most efficient or effective option to improve public health.
The FDA has failed to conduct a thorough and quantitative analysis. The FDA admits it is unable to quantify health benefits derived from this rule. Instead, the FDA has developed a qualitative assessment that describes how implementing this rule would likely reduce the level of foodborne illness. The FDA estimates the “breakeven illness percentage” for each of three closely related regulatory options that are not developed within a model of optimal food safety. The FDA thus does not conduct an in-depth benefit-cost analysis of this major revision of our nation’s food safety regulations.
The proposed rules would implement sections 806(a) and (c) of Dodd-Frank, which allow the Board to authorize Reserve Banks to establish and maintain accounts for, provide certain services to, and pay interest on balances maintained by or on behalf of financial market utilities (FMUs) that are designated by the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) as systemically important or likely to become systemically important.
I do not believe that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage can be issued in large volume without taxpay- ers becoming liable for interest-rate risk. Conversely, if we reform the housing system so that the private sector truly bears the risk, then borrowers would encounter a large differential between the cost of a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage and the cost of a loan with an interest rate that is fixed for only 5 years. Borrowers should be making their choices based on this true cost differential.
Even if Do Not Track takes root and some consumers turn it on, many will be incentivized by ad networks or publishers to opt right back in to “tracking” to retain access to sites and services they desire. In doing so, they may end up sharing even more information than they do today. Moreover, this may drive still greater consolidation since larger players will be in a position to grant Internet-wide opt-in exceptions, while smaller providers cannot…
Two significant problems have become evident through this lengthy period of slow job growth. First, there has been an unprecedented disengagement from the labor force with current participation at its lowest level in almost 35 years. This means there are currently 102 million jobless people in the United States, but less than 12 million are still actively looking for work and therefore counted as unemployed. Second, the number of long-term unemployed is at a record high. They currently represent over 4.6 million people, and the long-term unemployment rate (the share of the labor force unemployed for over six months) remains well above historical levels at 3.0 percent.
In analyzing the proposed policies being developed to carry out Congress’s mandate, it is important to remember that the purpose of the mandate is to open America’s skies to commercial UAS use in order to reap the social benefits that such use will bring.
Even if NHTSA does not develop a more cost-effective alternative, Congress and the public deserve an accurate assessment of the likely benefits and costs of the proposed rule. An accurate assessment of benefits would(1) acknowledge that benefits to blind and vision-impaired individuals are just a fraction of the figure in the preliminary RIA, (2) recognize that there are no benefits to pedalcyclists at the speeds covered by the regulation, and (3) base any benefit estimates for people with normal vision on research that identifies the causes of hybrid vehicle collisions with such individuals.