Stan Crader

Author & Lecturer on Writing About Rural America



In a recent tweet I claimed that the regulatory agencies had evolved into a fourth branch of government that essentially combines legislative, judicial, and executive all into one neat body accountable to nobody. I was surprised at the number of people that didn’t understand the tweet, replying that only Congress can make laws. I’ll explain.

It’s true, only the State’s and the US Congress can make ‘law.’ However, agencies can make rules that if not complied with, can result in penalties that cost money which is tantamount to a fine. Laws passed by Congress generally include a range of penalties… Continue reading

Flummoxed, Frustrated, but not Fooled

The top 500 companies in America grew their profits last year by 31.7%. Meanwhile, they added only .7% to their workforce. Wal-Mart, the nation’s revenue leader kept their headcount level. Why all of this record growth with little or no addition to the workforce?

Earlier this year the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the Hobby Lobby vs. Sebelius case. Hobby Lobby is faced with what some would call a moral dilemma. Hobby Lobby wishes to provide healthcare for their workforce of over 22,000. But they don’t choose to offer coverage for aborticant drugs. Their choice is to either drop… Continue reading

Ethanol Supreme?

The following is a reprint, with permission, of an article by Dan Shell of Power Equipment Trade magaine.

Some say the United States Supreme Court has better things to do than help adjudicate a court case concerning the EPA’s decision to approve E15 15% ethanol-blended gasoline, but I say what better place to help affirm that the great American task of “gassing up”—a job most of us learned by our early teens if not younger—remains safe for both autos and power equipment and that consumers won’t be putting their lives into their hands along with the gas pump handle when… Continue reading

The Paradoxical gasoline and Internet Sales Tax Conundrum


Even if you don’t agree with my blog you have to admit that’s a heck of a title. I love paradoxes and conundrums. The falling gasoline tax collected as a percent of miles driven and the fall of sales tax revenue as a percent of total retail sales is a huge problem, but it’s not being discussed. I have my ideas on why it’s not being discussed. That’s for another blog with political overtones.

The EPA has foisted lofty CAFÉ standards upon the US car manufacturers. Auto manufacturers have indicated that the standards can be achieved. The cost of… Continue reading

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