Republican Regulatory Recipe

May 23rd, 2012

Inspired by The kind of senators you can bank on (Dana Milbank, Washington Post5/23/12, A21).


“The food is terrible.”
“Yes, and the portions are so small.”


Take 1 proposed regulation.

Add water.


Place regulatory mixture on back burner.

Add water.

Place regulatory mixture on back burner again.

Invite lobbyists to add desired ingredients, to taste, but try to stick to bland ingredients.

Periodically taste regulation and exclaim loudly “this is still much too spicy,” then add more water.

Continue to simmer on back burner at very low heat.


In separate pan, obtain agency and consumer input. Reduce at extremely high heat for long period of time, dilute, then reduce again.

Continue to apply very high heat, stirring continuously, until mixture breaks down into unrecognizable viscous substance.

Smash or remove any still-recognizable pieces of input, add water, then bring to boil at high heat.

Add one-half teaspoon of resulting substance to main regulatory mixture (throw away the rest).


Continue to simmer at very low heat on back burner.

Add more water. If pot becomes too full, pour out half of contents.

Be careful to keep heat very low (otherwise, pot will boil over and create a mess that’s almost impossible to clean up).


Turn off heat, and allow contents to cool to room temperature (tepid).

Let sit overnight.

Refrigerate for 90 days.


When ready to serve, remove from refrigerator and heat to room temperature.

Serve in small portions to industry lobbyists (expect complaints, then add ingredients or dilute accordingly).


Serve in small portions to Congressional Republicans.

Expect complaints about flavor, length of time taken to prepare, and that the portion size is too small to assuage hunger.

Offer to serve additional and/or larger portions (that offer will be rejected).


Await instructions about whether to throw out mixture or return to back burner. Do not expect to be thanked for your hard work.


Ridiculous, I know, but all too true. As Dana points out, Republicans are now attacking federal regulators because they did not know about JPMorgan’s risky trades in advance (they don’t have the authority to find out). They claim that JPMorgan proves that Dodd-Frank is ineffective and should be eliminated, even though (1) they are the ones that weakened it, and (2) most of its provisions are not even in force yet. The solution, according to Pat Toomey: “let the people in the marketplace make the decisions they will make.” Sounds to me like a recipe for disaster.


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