You are here

OpenMarket: September 2013

  • Worker Centers Collecting Federal Funds

    September 19, 2013
    This summer, worker centers gained public notoriety with staged strikes at fast-food restaurants and Wal-Mart. Their effectiveness in gaining media attention has not been lost on labor unions, as the likes of SEIU, UFCW, UNITE-HERE and other unions are worker centers' primary benefactors.
  • Executive Branch Review of Federal Regulations -- Still Highly Incomplete

    September 19, 2013
    In the 2014 fiscal budget proposal, the White House praised regulation of auto safety, energy efficiency and credit cards, and claimed, "In fact, the net benefits of regulations issued through the third fiscal year of the first term have exceeded $91 billion." Well, let's look at that. Rules officially reviewed by OMB...
  • A Victory for Property Rights in Virginia

    September 19, 2013
    Over a year ago, I highlighted an eminent domain abuse case in Virginia. To recap: The Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority and Old Dominion University conspired to seize private property to support ODU's expansion efforts. One affected property owner, Bob Wilson, was justifiably upset by the land grab and hung a banner on the side of his business protesting the city's actions. City inspectors then found the banner to be too large, ordering Wilson to remove the banner or face a $1,000 per day fine. Wilson fought both the eminent domain condemnation and the banner take-down order, being represented by our friends at the Institute for Justice in the latter case. Wilson's First Amendment case is still pending, but fortunately he...
  • Ignoring the Government's Role in the Financial Crisis, Five Years Later

    September 19, 2013
    When it comes to reporting on the 2008 financial crisis, many journalists are experts at ignoring the elephant in the room: the government's role in spawning the crisis through perverse mandates and incentives. Peter Wallison, who predicted years earlier that mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would run into trouble, highlights this in The Wall Street Journal. As he observes, on "the fifth anniversary of the Lehman Brothers collapse, the media have been full of analyses about what happened in those fateful days." But "any discussion of the government's central role in the disaster is neatly avoided. This historical airbrushing is something of a feat...
  • We Must Take a More Active Role in Challenging the FCC

    September 19, 2013
    On September 9, 2013 I entered the E. Barrett Prettyman Court house, which houses the federal Court of Appeals for the District of Colombia Circuit. It was 8:30am and in one and a half hours, oral arguments in Verizon v. FCC were slated to begin. I assumed that arriving an hour before the doors would open would be time enough to get a seat for the case. However, I encountered a line of over a hundred people already waiting to enter the courtroom, and by the time I entered the court room, space was limited to standing room only. As oral arguments proceeded, the panel asked a litany of questions about the question...
  • DOL Finalizes Companionship Rule

    September 18, 2013
    With little notice, on September 17, Labor Secretary Thomas Perez finalized a rule to extend the Fair Labor Standards Act--minimum wage and overtime protections--to nearly 2 million direct care providers.
  • More Harm from "Disparate Impact" Regulations

    September 18, 2013
    Earlier, we wrote about the Obama administration's attempt to inject a race-conscious "disparate impact" provision into colorblind anti-discrimination laws like the Fair Housing Act, and how that could lead to risky, race-conscious lending, bad loans, and future bank failures, mortgage meltdowns, and financial crises. Now, Ohio University economics professor Richard Vedder highlights an additional area where disparate-impact rules may be having a negative impact: higher education. (“Disparate impact” is a term in anti-...
  • A Thorough Education in Mediocrity

    September 17, 2013
    Success can pertain to personal satisfaction, an intangible, or outside validation (whether via spoken word, wealth, or popularity). Personal satisfaction may spring from accomplishing a task at a pre-set standard, thus prompting outside validation and so qualifying it as a success. Dissatisfaction with the status quo can drive success, when tasks are accomplished only through the motivation to change a current reality. Even if the only goal is attaining wealth, the drive stems from dissatisfaction with one's current fiscal situation. Yet turning dissatisfaction with the status quo into real world action requires a clear worldview and engagement with one’s surroundings. Education serves to prime youth for such engagement—or at least, it should. The public education system often disillusions students, indirectly encouraging them to tune out a world that is presented as uninteresting,...
  • Mississippi Should Tell CFPB to "Stop Spying on Me"

    September 17, 2013
    The federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is coming to Mississippi Wednesday and Thursday with a public forum on "access to information." A vital question for Mississippians to ask leaders of the bureaucracy at the venue, being held from 11 AM to 1 PM tomorrow at Mississippi Valley State University in Itta Bena, is why the CFPB wants so much access to their personal information. Here is the CFPB's meeting agenda for Mississippi. This Facebook page tells about the privacy violations and other problems with this uniquely unaccountable governmental entity. The CFPB, created by the Dodd-Frank financial overhaul to defend consumers in the credit card and mortgage markets, is building a database of sensitive individual financial information...
  • Mid-September update

    September 17, 2013

Pages

Subscribe to OpenMarket: September 2013