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OpenMarket: March 2018

  • Track How Humans Are Making Progress around the World

    March 30, 2018

    For several years now, HumanProgress has been an excellent source of data and scholarship on major demographic trends around the word. As longtime fans know, over the long term and in most places, human quality of life has been increasingly steadily on every measure, from poverty to literacy to longevity to leisure time. And in the places in which the opposite appears to be happening, we often have clear evidence that oppressive and economically illiterate government policies are to blame.  

  • Investigate Labor Relations Board Confidentiality Breach

    March 30, 2018

    Earlier this week, the Competitive Enterprise Institute sent a request to the National Labor Relations Board Office of Inspector General to investigate NLRB member Mark Pearce for publicly disclosing confidential Board information about the status of a pending case. The case, Hy-Brand, in question involves important Board precedent related to joint employer relationships, which impact thousands of businesses across the country.

  • Chef Geoff Tracy Fights Virginia's Happy Hour Ad Ban

    March 30, 2018

    Local D.C.-area chef Geoff Tracy is a bacon-lover, popular food Instagrammer, and a budding legal activist. This week he and his attorneys at the Pacific Legal Foundation announced that they are suing the state of Virginia’s Alcohol Beverage Control Authority over its alcohol advertising ban.

  • Wayfair Supreme Court Case Could Upend How We Buy and Sell Things Online

    March 30, 2018

    In April, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a case, South Dakota v. Wayfair, Corp, that could have a huge impact on people who sell and buy things online. At issue is the necessity of a physical presence to trigger sales tax obligations. That is, does a seller have to have a store, office, or warehouse in a state before that state can force it to calculate, collect, and remit sales taxes to that state? According to the 1992 decision in Quill Corp. v. North Dakota, the current answer is yes.

  • Hope for Reforming Obama-Era Fuel Economy Mandates at EPA

    March 29, 2018

    The Environmental Protection Agency is approaching the April 1st deadline to complete its Midterm Evaluation of the Obama administration’s fuel economy and motor vehicle greenhouse gas emission standards for model years 2022-2025.

  • European-Style Tech Regulation Not the Answer to Facebook Privacy Concerns

    March 28, 2018

    The fallout at Facebook continues to grow after it was revealed that millions of Facebook users’ data was used by the consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, in violation of Facebook’s policies. While reactions have been varied, we're beginning to hear loud calls for European-style privacy regulations to be imposed on companies like Facebook. This would deliver a stunning setback to a largely free, innovative, and prosperous tech sector in the United States.

  • Tax Complexity a Major Headache for Small Businesses Online

    March 27, 2018

    For a lot of small businesses in America, taxes are not just an expensive hassle but a scary, anxiety-inducing ordeal. Taxes are the number-one concern for small businesspeople in general, and especially so for the smallest entrepreneurs—individuals with a one-person business that may not even be their full-time living.

  • Obama Holdovers Work to Save EPA Junk Science

    March 27, 2018

    Obama administration holdovers at the Environmental Protection Agency are doing their best undermine efforts to drain EPA’s bureaucratic swamp. And thus far, unfortunately, they’re succeeding. A recent example is Congress’s failure to cut, or even reduce, funding of one of EPA’s controversial research programs known as the Integrated Risk Information System, or IRIS.

  • Commonwealth Nations Beating America on FinTech Regulation

    March 27, 2018

    While the United States continues to have healthy development of financial technologies—thanks predominately to unparalleled access to capital and technology—it is at risk of falling behind to nations such as the United Kingdom, Australia, and many others who provide greater accommodation to technological disruption. 

  • Cracking Down on Automated Vehicles Would Mean More Death and Destruction

    March 26, 2018

    Real-life road testing is the best way to continue improving the performance of automated driving systems, thanks in part to the gathering of real-time road data. Throughout that process, engineers will have the time and information to write technical standards to better inform any future regulatory changes. But cutting off or greatly curtailing automated vehicle road testing would only forestall the radical safety improvements that can help end much of the death and destruction that occur on America’s roadways due to driver error.

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