Donald Trump may not be the most dignified man to occupy the White House, understates James Freeman in the WSJ, but the results of his first year as president have been blockbuster for liberty in the United States.
The largest rate cut in the history of the U.S. corporate income tax, along with individual tax cuts up and down the income scale, arrive on top of a year-long effort to reduce America’s regulatory burden.
What’s especially encouraging is that many of the new rules are simply rolling back earlier government-imposed burdens rather than creating new ones.
As a recent WSJ editorial explains:
Ten days after his inauguration, Mr. Trump issued an executive order directing his departments to scour the books for rules they could rescind or repeal without damaging the law. He also directed that for each single regulation issued, agencies should identify at least two for elimination. In one his best appointments, he named Neomi Rao to run the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs that must clear new rules.
The results have been impressive. Ms. Rao reported this month that through Sept. 30 the Trump Administration had taken 67 deregulatory actions but only three new significant regulatory actions. That’s a 22 to 1 ratio. She also reported that since fall 2016 more than 1,500 planned regulatory actions have been withdrawn or delayed.
Yes, free marketers should break out the Champagne, because the rollbacks are remarkable, perhaps even unprecedented. Nonetheless, Mr. Freeman reminds readers, the 2017 rollbacks are relatively modest. There’s much work still to be done. Bring on the New Year!