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OpenMarket: John Berlau

  • George Washington’s Fight (and Ours) against Regulation without Representation

    June 29, 2020
    Those who have followed CEI over the years know that one of our main grievances is “Regulation Without Representation.” The phrase—an apt description of laws effectively made by unelected regulatory agencies instead of the people’s representatives in Congress—also connotes the battle that George Washington and other American patriots fought against taxation without representation.
  • Why George Washington Shouldn’t Be Canceled

    June 26, 2020
    The father of our country is making news, but for disappointing reasons. Washington was trending on Twitter after his statue was toppled in Portland. A private school in Nashville dropped its annual celebration of Washington's birthday, saying it was “not consistent with or relevant to the way that we teach history today.” If anything, current events only serve to make him more relevant than ever.
  • Fedcoin and FedNow are Dangerous and Unnecessary Expansions of Federal Reserve Power

    June 10, 2020
    To counter the financial damage from America’s national lockdown, the Federal Reserve has taken unprecedented stepsy. Most of these moves received grudging acceptance even from many Fed skeptics. But the Fed’s expanded powers are all the more reason to be skeptical of its entering into activities the private sector clearly could do and is doing, such as payments services and cryptocurrency.
  • My Answer to J.K. Rowling on What Cryptocurrency Is

    June 2, 2020
    To paraphrase a famous financial services commercial from the 1970s and 1980s, when J.K. Rowling asks, people answer. When the famed author of the Harry Potter series of books requested an explanation of bitcoin on Twitter in May, hundreds of people raced to reply. On May 17, CEI's John Berlau joined the fray in a tweet thread addressed to Rowling.
  • SEC's Shuttering of Fund Fees - #NeverNeeded and Never Authorized

    April 29, 2020
    Over the past month, CEI and others have pointed to #NeverNeeded regulations that are hindering our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and to economic dislocation. Now CEI has joined with other industry and policy groups to petition the Securities and Exchange Commission to cease regulatory actions that were not only #NeverNeeded, but never authorized.
  • Modified Libra Cryptocurrency Still an Innovation, but Clear away Regulatory Barriers for More

    April 21, 2020
    Libra and other cryptocurrencies could serve functions other than initially imagined. The potential for faster payments from Libra and other cryptocurrencies, at a time when the public and policy makers are looking to move money faster, may be the biggest draw.
  • How SEC Accounting Regulations Hindered National Stockpile—and Still May Be Doing So

    April 9, 2020
    In a new report, CEI experts outline #NeverNeeded regulations that are frustrating responses to the pandemic and its aftermath. Among those is an obscure Securities and Exchange Commission regulatory “guidance” document that may be hindering production and distribution of much-needed medical supplies.
  • Don’t Save Restaurants by Shafting Consumers

    March 20, 2020
    Restaurants are among the hardest—if not the hardest—hit of industries impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Like other industries, restaurants are lobbying Congress and state legislatures for assistance. The proposals of the National Restaurant Association have some healthy policy morsels that will benefit all, but some other items that will give restaurant consumers severe indigestion.
  • Best Books of 2019: Year of Vindication for Mother of George Washington

    December 31, 2019
    August 25 of this past year was the 230th anniversary of the death of Mary Ball Washington, the mother of the first president of the United States. Her life was extraordinary, as she lived into her 80s, seeing her son George lead the Continental Army to victory against Great Britain in the Revolutionary War and then become the nation’s first President in 1789.
  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Should End Frivolous Student Loan Lawsuit

    November 19, 2019
    The efforts of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Director Kathy Kraninger have gone a long way in reversing egregious Obama-era actions that plagued the agency, helping to make it more transparent, accountable, and friendly to consumer choice. However, while these efforts should be applauded, there remains unfinished business that must be taken care of—chief among them the flawed lawsuit levied by the CFPB against the finance company Navient.

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