We need more, not fewer, government Yelps

Source: Blair Levin & Larry Downes, Washington Post (Paid Registration)

Criticism of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau acting director Mick Mulvaney’s recent comments to a banking group has largely focused on his advocating a pay-to-play system for interest groups to access government officials. But similarly disappointing is his wanting to close the CFPB consumer complaint database, on the grounds that he shouldn’t have “to run a Yelp for financial services sponsored by the federal government.”

Mulvaney has it backward. We think governments need more, not fewer, Yelp-like services in their arsenals. And conservatives should be particularly supportive of such innovations. Consumer-supplied information can reduce reliance on regulation and enforcement to protect consumers by encouraging market forces that reward better business practices.

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