Watchdog members, Christine Berry and Stephen Devlin, New Economics Foundation, have authored anextremely readable, yet comprehensive, report on the impact of ‘better regulation’ in the UK.
In the report “Threat to Democracy” they show how:
‘Better regulation’ is bad for the economy. The UK is already one of the least regulated economies in the developed world, and there is little evidence that regulation hurts the economy: on the contrary, good regulation (for example, high environmental standards) can drive innovation and create new markets. Many enlightened businesses recognise that regulation is essential to tackle economic threats such as climate change. Protecting the profits of the regulated is not the same thing as protecting our economy.
Better regulation’ is bad for society and the environment. By reorienting the policy machine around the goal of driving down costs to business, it explicitly prioritises the interests of business – and the most short-term, socially irresponsible businesses at that – over those of workers, consumers and the environment.
‘Better regulation’ is bad for our democracy. With little or no scrutiny or democratic debate, the policy-making process has been brought under an unprecedented level of control by private economic interests. Debates about lobbying transparency have little meaning when corporations are simultaneously being invited to write their own rules