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OpenMarket: August 2018

  • Judge Strikes Down Trump Executive Orders on Federal Employment

    August 28, 2018

    In a lengthy decision, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia effectively struck down a package of executive orders issued by President Trump that sought to ensure the efficient administration of public business. All that remains of the orders are broad policy statements that do not hold the force of law or provisions not challenged by labor unions. It is a near certainty that the Department of Justice will appeal this decision.

  • Ditch Antitrust Regulation in Favor of Competing Bigness

    August 28, 2018

    The Federal Trade Commission (born in 1914, fathered by Woodrow Wilson) is hosting a series of hearings and discussions on “Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century,” particularly as these are affected by emerging business models in the modern high-tech economy. We at the Competitive Enterprise Institute provided a brief filing and there will be more opportunities for the public to weigh in.

  • Australian Government Calls for Interchange Fee Ban

    August 27, 2018

    One would expect that years of failing policy would force policymakers to reconsider the wisdom of their actions. But not for the Australian Productivity Commission, the Australian government’s think tank, which recently advocated for doubling down on a decades-old policy of price controls for payment cards.

  • Brexit Britain Provides Opportunity for New Style of U.S. Trade Agreement

    August 27, 2018

    Despite its reliance on raising tariff barriers as a weapon in trade negotiation, the U.S. will soon have the opportunity to negotiate a new free trade deal based around some of the principles Ryan Young and I outline in our recent study “Traders of the Lost Ark.” Assuming it does not arrange to stay within the European Union’s customs union, the UK will regain full power to negotiate trade deals when it leaves the EU in March 2019. The administration should jump at the chance to create a new model for future trade deals.

  • This Week in Ridiculous Regulations

    August 27, 2018

    Lawyers are having a field day in Washington, and not just in cases involving associates of a certain member of the executive branch. Over at regulatory agencies, new regulations from the last week range from military support for special events to the economic impact of duck hunting.

  • EPA Proposes Rule To Replace 'Clean Power' Plan

    August 26, 2018

    The Environmental Protection Agency on August 21st released its proposed rule to replace the “Clean Power” Plan (CPP). The rule, which is called the Affordable Clean Energy Rule (ACE), would get rid of the CPP’s takeover of the grid and concentrate on “inside the fence” regulation of greenhouse gas emissions from individual coal and natural gas power plants. 

  • Growing Human Organs for Fun and Profit

    August 24, 2018

    Our friends at Freethink Media have an excellent new video out about medical innovation—in this case, how a new company is developing genetically modified pigs that can grow human organs. 

  • Reform Federal Process for Environmental Permits

    August 24, 2018

    The Trump administration has initiated several steps to streamline the federal permitting process for major projects, including resource extraction and infrastructure. In particular, it has focused on the need to fix the problems surrounding the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), which can add years of delays and tens of millions of dollars to the cost of job-creating projects and serves to kill some worthy projects outright. 

  • Trade Made Renaissance Art Possible

    August 24, 2018

    Trade and specialization make all kinds of life-enriching innovations possible. In fact, Italian Renaissance art was one of them, a gift that continues to inspire us five centuries later. Re-opening trade with the Middle and Far East is what allowed Europe to climb out of the Middle Ages and into the Renaissance. Venice, in particular, was a hub of trading activity, as Peter Frankopan points out in his 2016 book The Silk Roads: A New History of the World.

  • Senate Should Pass on Joan Claybrook’s Advice and Pass AV START Act

    August 23, 2018

    Why are self-styled safety advocates opposing the first legislative step that could help usher in the greatest automotive safety improvements in history? This is a question to ask a handful of senators, led by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), who are holding up Senate passage of the bipartisan AV START Act, which would establish the first nationwide regulatory regime for highly automated vehicles (HAVs), often called self-driving cars. The House’s companion bill, the SELF DRIVE Act, passed that chamber by voice vote in September 2017.


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