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Best of the Blog 2016

We’ve had a great year here at Open Market, your source for timely blog commentary on politics and public policy since 2006. We’ve also covered a lot of ground policy-wise, with popular posts on topics from TSA body scanners to what climate change policies the President-elect should pursue in the next administration.  

Certain topics, however, were especially popular with readers in 2016, so I’d like to give special recognition to those contributors before we close out the year.

CEI Will Surmount Crimethink Persecution from April 13th by Kent Lassman:

Feisty, aggressive, unwavering, and sometimes unconventional—all terms I heard prior to joining CEI last week as president. The descriptions were spot-on. But before the first conversations ended, CEI had a new opportunity to showcase why it is the leading organization making the uncompromising case for individual and economic freedom.

Last week, an intimidation campaign led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and former Vice President Al Gore reached CEI’s doors. We received a subpoena from U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude Walker demanding CEI, a nonprofit and private organization, turn over a massive amount of documents on climate change policy work from 1997-2007, nearly 20 years ago. Needless to say, we will fight the subpoena.

Democratic Party Platform Seeks to Curb Worker Choice and Opportunity from July 25th by Trey Kovacs:

Right to work laws provide workers with a choice. In states without such laws, an individual is forced to financially support an organization they disagree with or risk being penalized.

Forced dues are inappropriate because most workers never voted for the union that represents them. Once a union organizes a workplace, it remains the monopoly bargaining agent over the workforce and never stands for reelection. As I’ve noted in the past, “[A]s little as less than 7 percent of the current private sector workforce has ever voted for the union that represents them in contract negotiations that determine their pay and workplace conditions.”

Q&A on the FDA’s New E-Cigarette Rules from August 5th by Michelle Minton:

After years of waiting and fighting, the new rules put forth by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on electronic cigarettes and other non-cigarette products go into effect Monday, August 8th, 2016. The rule change, purportedly to protect public health, sets new restrictions on packaging, sales, and marketing of vaping products in addition to requiring compliance with Agency filing and approval processes. With upwards of 35,000 vape-related businesses and thousands of popular products at risk, people are understandably anxious about what the changes mean.

Obama’s Worst Power Grab Yet from September 16th by William Yeatman:

Friday’s announcement might be the worst of Obama’s executive overreaches. Only minutes after a private party vindicated its right to build an infrastructure project on private land, the President swooped in and effectively overturned the court’s decision. We already knew that he thinks the President can write laws (see, e.g., the “Clean Power” Plan). Now we learn that Obama thinks the President is empowered to reverse judicial rulings with which he disagrees.

Obama’s 2016 Federal Register Just Topped Highest Page Count of All Time from November 17th by Wayne Crews:

Well that didn’t him take long.

President Barack Obama’s Federal Register, the daily depository of rules and regulations, added 572 pages today, and stands at 81,640 pages for 2016. 

This is the all-time record. Ever.

Obama also held the prior record, 81,405 pages in 2010.

The 80,000 page mark has been passed in only three previous years (2010, 2011, 2015).

And an enthusiastic honorable mention goes out to all of the posts from previous years which continue to perform well long after they were originally published. Blogging is, by its nature, primarily a medium of the now rather than one for the ages. It’s good to know, however, that sometimes our posts have a longer shelf life than expected. Whether you want to know how much caffeine a can of Four Loko had in 2010, how many federal agencies existed in 2015, or what font the new Harry Potter book used in 2007, our database of posts is here to help.