Regulation and the Reagan Era: Politics, Bureaucracy and the Public Interest, Roger E. Meiners and Bruce Yandle, (ed). (New York: Holmes & Meier, 1989), 293pp.
Regulation and the Reagan Era: Politics, Bureaucracy and the Public Interest is an analysis of governmental regulation and deregulation, with particular focus on the Reagan administration. The work is a collection of essays by economists and policy analysts and is forwarded by Robert W. Crandall of the Brookings Institute.
Regulation and the Reagan Era: Politics, Bureaucracy and the Public Interest has been required reading for ARSC 5010/7010 as taught by Dr. Guy Burgess and Professor Charles Lester and multiple political science courses at the University of Colorado at Boulder. This work will be of interest to those who wish an understanding of the Reagan agenda which promised substantive changes in governmental regulatory policy and the results of that agenda. The work is divided into three parts with the first being devoted to a discussion of regulation and deregulation in general. The editors begin with an introduction which they hope will illustrate the regulatory lessons to be learned from the Reagan era. This is followed by a review of the economics of regulation: the political process.
The largest portion of the book is the second which focuses upon regulation and the Reagan era. This section begins with an essay on regulatory reform under the Reagan administration. This is followed by an examination of consumer protection at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) during this same administration. Other authors examine antitrust policy under Reagan and the deregulation in telecommunications. The final three essays in this middle section address: the privatization (or attempts at privatization) of federal lands, deregulation at the US International Trade Commission, and the shift of power from the Civil Aeronautics Board to the Department of Transportation.
The final portion of the book addresses the relationship among politics, regulation and bureaucracy. The first essay is devoted to an examination of the regulatory infrastructure which, in effect, creates layers of regulation. Professor Fred S. McChesney addresses the assertion that regulation and taxes amount to political extortion. The next essay examines the politics behind regulation and the institutional bias. The next author offers a "Users guide to the regulatory bureaucracy". The final chapter examines the complexities of achieving change in Washington.
Regulation and the Reagan Era: Politics, Bureaucracy and the Public Interest was published as part of a series: Independent Studies in Political Economy. The essays therein offer the Conservative perspective on regulatory change during the Reagan administration.