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OpenMarket: April 2010

  • Supreme Court Overturns Ban on Cross; Gay-Marriage Opponents Will Lose Privacy Battle; Controversial Judicial Nominees; Wal-Mart Faces Mega-Lawsuit

    April 28, 2010
    In a splintered ruling, the Supreme Court ruled that a trial judge erred in issuing an injunction against a cross honoring veterans. It left open the possibility that the judge could issue an injunction all over again if he makes certain findings, although it suggested that the cross could probably remain in the midst of public land as long as the parcel of land immediately around it is transferred to private hands. (The trial...
  • Regulation of the Day 135: Mustache Nets

    April 28, 2010
    Just like church and state, hair and food are best kept separate. Which brings us to the latest fad in Brooklyn’s trendy Cobble Hill neighborhood: mustache nets.
  • Goldman Sachs Endorses Trojan-Horse Financial "Reform" Bill; Bill Has Payoffs for Special Interests

    April 28, 2010
    The CEO of Goldman Sachs, the Wall Street firm accused of fraud by the SEC, has endorsed the so-called financial "reform" bill backed by President Obama and congressional leaders.
  • FDA Salt Statement Leaves a “Mistaken Impression”

    April 28, 2010
    Some 80 years ago this month, Mahatma Gandhi led tens of thousands on a 240-mile march in protest against a British salt tax, inciting millions to engage in widespread acts of civil disobedience.  In a seemingly unintentional display of historic irony, the Food and Drug Administration made national headlines on April 20th for its efforts to forcibly restrict the amount of salt that can be added to processed foods.  The Washington Post was among the first to pick up the story, and was subsequently chastised for its efforts in a statement from the FDA, released later that day.  The FDA accused the Washington Post story of “[leaving] a mistaken impression” in the minds of readers.  But examination of the facts shows that The Washington Post got it right, and that it is the FDA statement itself which leaves the mistaken impression. The event that triggered media interest was the release of...
  • ObamaCare Vastly Expands IRS Red Tape and Power, Raises Medical and Insurance Costs, Taxes, and Deficits, and Harms Very Sick People

    April 27, 2010
    "Billions of more documents" will be have to be filled out by small businesses for the IRS so that a "spendthrift Congress can shake a few extra bucks out of" them to pay for ObamaCare. They will have to spend countless hours to "gather information," such as about the person they buy a used car from, and the mom-and-pop landlords who lease space to them, even if the small business has to spend more money gathering the information than the IRS will collect in taxes as a result.  (The new health care law will raise far more revenue by...
  • Regulation of the Day 134: Not Voting

    April 27, 2010
    Despite its flaws, democracy has worked tolerably well in this country for a long time. Perhaps the best part of our particular democracy is that people are free to choose their level of engagement with it. That should be your choice. Not Tom Hennessy’s.
  • As financial vote fails in Senate, Florida shows how to really protect consumers from deception

    April 27, 2010
    Yesterday, the Senate failed to achive the 60 votes necessary to move forward on the Restoring American Financial Stablity Act. All Republicans present and Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) voted against the bill in a 57-41 that was three short of cloture. CEI, along with a broad spectrum of groups in the Center-Right coalition, signed a letter expressing opposition to the bill's bailouts, taxation and overregulation. On the latter point, there is widespread concern about a giant new bureaucracy created by the bill called the Consumer Financial Protection Agency that would have a $700 million budget and little oversight by Congress or other agencies. What alarms many market-minded individuals is that advocates of the CFPA say it will not just police financial products that are fraudulent or...
  • Fixing America's Immigration Black Market

    April 27, 2010
    In today's American Spectator, Alex Nowrasteh and I make the case that lowering the cost of legal immigration through liberalization will reduce the amount of illegal immigration, and shrink cruel black markets.
  • ObamaCare Will Raise Insurance Premiums and Health Care Costs, Perhaps Bankrupt Hospitals, Federal Officials Admit

    April 26, 2010
    "Economic experts from President Obama's own Health and Human Services Department have released a devastating report noting that Obamacare 'will increase national health care spending by $311 billion from 2010-2019,' according to the Associated Press. Even worse, 'Medicare cuts may be unrealistic and unsustainable, driving about 15 percent of hospitals into the red and 'possibly jeopardizing access' to care for seniors.'"  This contradicts Obama's claims that the health care law would "bend the cost curve down" and cut the cost of health insurance.  Starting in 2013, the health care legislation will also dramatically increase the taxes of "...
  • Class Action Lawyers Ripped Off Their Clients, With Approval From Federal Judge

    April 26, 2010
    Class-action lawsuits all too often benefit only the lawyers, not the allegedly victimized consumers they claim to represent.  The Center for Class Action Fairness takes aim at such abuses. Today, it filed a brief with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals "appealing a district court's controversial approval of a class action settlement where attorneys recovered a $850,000 fee for themselves despite failing to provide any benefit to the class." The lawsuit, "In re Bluetooth Product Liability Litigation, No. 07-ML-1822, alleged that three manufacturers of Bluetooth headsets for cell phones committed consumer fraud because consumers might not be aware that extensive use of headsets at high volume could...

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