CEI Weekly: Looking Back on 2009

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
January 1, 2010

>>In the News: A 2009 Recap
2009 has been noted in CEI’s history as an important year in the fight for liberty. Among the events that occurred in 2009, such as the Waxman-Markey Cap and Trade bill,  the silencing of EPA climate change skeptic, Alan Carlin, and the Supreme Court case against Sarbanes Oxley,
2009 was also a significant year in terms of events that happened in the past. 2009 was the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and also the 25th anniversary of the founding of CEI. But the best is yet to come as CEI’s work becomes more recognized and, thus, reaches more readers. This is evidenced in one example as CEI’s William Yeatman’s article on Copenhagen has been translated into Korean and is also published on Korean news site, Segye.com.

>>Shaping the Debate
Seven Quotes About Communism
Sam Kazman’s op-ed in the Washington Examiner

No Government in the Bedroom
Michelle Minton’s letter to the editor in the Los Angeles Times

>>Best of the Blogs
Is ObamaCare’s “Individual Mandate” Unconstitutional?
by Hans Bader
Obamacare is certainly controversial, with most Americans opposing it. It would reduce lifesaving medical innovation, raise many taxes, drive up insurance premiums and the deficit, break many campaign promises, and impose heavy burdens on state budgets. . . But bad policy is not synonymous with unconstitutionality. If the “individual mandate” is struck down, it will be because of Congress imposed it directly, rather than as a condition of states receiving federal funds, and clumsily drafted the penalties for the mandate in way that takes them outside the reach of its tax powers.

Michigan Senate not “FAIR” and it’s a Good Thing
by Michelle Minton
The Michigan Senate recessed last week without passing the proposed insurance reforms that would, among other things, prevent insurers from using factors such as education level, occupation, credit scores, and would prevent them from setting rates without approval from the state’s insurance commissioner. The proposal which was passed in the House hopes to reduce Michigan’s exorbitant premiums which rank among the highest in the nation.

Say no to EFCA in 2010
by Ivan Osorio
The first calendar year of the Obama administration draws to a close with organized labor not achieving its top legislative priority: the horribly misnamed Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA). That doesn’t mean that union-supported Democrats are going to stop trying. We should expect to see “compromise” proposals that replace EFCA’s most controversial provision, the “card check” provision that would effectively do away with secret balloting in union representation elections, with some form of “expedited” election process, or possibly take out card check and leave the rest of the bill intact.

>>LibertyWeek Podcast
Episode 74: TSA Under Fire
We investigate the Department of Homeland Security’s antiterrorism efforts, China’s climate change conundrum and California’s chance at closing her budget gap. We finish with some dangerous snowballing in the streets and the last echoes in the Ballad of Kwame Kilpatrick.

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Charles Huang
Web and Media Associate
Competitive Enterprise Institute
[email protected]