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OpenMarket: June 2011

  • Morning Media Summary

    June 13, 2011
    Tech: Apple sued over use of iCloud name: “I can’t say that I didn’t see this one coming. Apple keeps naming products very simple names like Phone, and Cloud simply with an i in front of them. With that kind of naming convention they are bound to run into some sort of trademark or copyright infringement.” U.S. funding stealth Internets to circumvent repressive regimes: “The revolution will be broadcast, despite efforts by repressive regimes to censor or shut down Internet and cell phone networks.” F.B.I. Agents Get Leeway to Push Privacy Bounds: “The Federal Bureau of Investigation is giving significant new powers to its roughly 14,000 agents,...
  • Baby products objection

    June 13, 2011
    As discussed at Point of Law, CCAF has filed an objection to the Babies "R" Us settlement in McDonough v. Toys "R" Us, Inc., No. 06-cv-242 (E.D. Pa.).
  • Police Celebrate Seized Online Gambling Funds

    June 13, 2011
    Roughly one week ago, an article appeared in The Odenton Patch covering an Anne Arundel County Police Department press conference where our benevolent ruling class is seen gleefully celebrating their "reward" in assisting a federal investigation which seized over $30 million dollars in internet gambling funds. They even ordered a giant Tiger Woods sized check for a photo-op. Note that though the operation was named "Operation Texas Hold'em," it is unrelated to the recent crackdown on online poker sites such as Full Tilt and Poker Stars. The gist of the story is that the police force set up their own online payment processor and processed payments for internet gambling sites as if they were a real legitimate...
  • Alcohol Regulation Roundup: June 10, 2011

    June 10, 2011
    Reporting from around the nation on the ridiculous, the sad, and the sometimes positive news about the state of alcohol regulations. National: BuyaBeerCompany.com, a website set up by two ad execs hoping to purchase Pabst Brewing Co. with donations from individuals, was shut down by the SEC. Michael Migliozzi and Brian William Flatow were able to find 5 million people who agreed to invest a total of $200 million to purchase the brewery. Apparently, they were supposed to register the public offering with the SEC first. Since the men haven’t actually collected money, the SEC reportedly reached a settlement with the two gentlemen, rather than charging them with violations of federal law....
  • Regulation Roundup

    June 10, 2011
    A new Senate bill would make lip-synching to other people’s music a jailable offense, plus more.
  • Breaking Up is Hard to Do for Michigan Brewers

    June 10, 2011
    If you thought leaving a spouse was tough, just be thankful that you're not a brewery in need of a divorce from your dead-beat distributor. A recently released video from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy explains how the mandatory three-tier system for alcohol distribution has resulted in an acrimonious relationship between brewers and wholesalers and the deleterious effects it has had on the state's market. I have been writing for a while on the many problems stemming from the Prohibition-era system of alcohol distribution which, in most states, requires that producers of alcohol (i.e., distillers, brewers, or wineries) to sell their product to wholesalers/distributors (i.e., middlemen) and then those distributors then sell the products to retailers (i.e.,...
  • CEI Weekly: Annual Dinner Is a Night to Remember

    June 10, 2011
    CEI Weekly is a compilation of articles and blog posts from CEI’s fellows and associates sent out via e-mail every Friday. Also included in the weekly newsletter is a brief description of CEI’s weekly podcast and a feature on a major CEI breakthrough made during the week. To sign up for CEI Weekly, go to http://cei.org/newsletters. CEI Weekly June 10, 2011 >>Featured Story Wednesday night's CEI Dinner was a great success -- thanks to our Master of Ceremonies Andrew Langer, our brilliant keynote speaker Daniel Hannan, and, of course, all of our guests. If you weren't able to attend (or if you did attend and want to relive the...
  • Yet Another Way That Obamacare Is Unconstitutional: The Arguments in Florida v. HHS

    June 10, 2011
    In the Washington Examiner, I discuss the brief I recently filed on behalf of Minnesota and North Carolina legislators challenging Obamacare, which highlights a lesser-known constitutional infirmity that plagues the massive new health care law passed in 2010: its Medicaid provisions violate limits on Congress's power under the Spending Clause. Reason's Peter Suderman ...
  • Cato: Downsizing the Department of Labor

    June 10, 2011
    Cato’s latest endeavor, downsizing the Federal Government: Labor Department, emphasizes the ineffectiveness and restrictions put in place by the Department of Labor. DOL has a plethora of regulations and programs hindering the economic recovery of the United States, which Cato’s new site highlights. For a department that's supposed primary function is to create business-friendly environment for job creation and provide assistance to citizens looking for employment, DOL has missed the mark. Downsizing this department is vital to ushering in a sustainable (in reality, not in the "eco-sustainability" sense) economic recovery. As seen on Cato’s site, DOL spending has increased substantially since its creation to an unwieldy $148 billion in FY 2011. However, the increase in spending has little to do with job creation or assisting...
  • Stealing You Blind: Drugging Monkeys on Your Dime

    June 10, 2011
    One of the themes I explore in my new book, Stealing You Blind: How Government Fat Cats Are Getting Rich Off of You, is that government has taken over the funding of scientific research when it has no need to, and thereby indirectly employs lots of researchers studying things of little value. There's another great example today, with the news that taxpayers have spent over $3 million on getting...

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