Today’s Links: February 29, 2012


LAWRENCE LINDSEY: “Geithner and the ‘Privilege’ of Being American
“Last week Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner said that the “most fortunate Americans” should pay more in taxes for the “privilege of being an American.” One can debate different ways of balancing the budget. But Mr. Geithner’s argument highlights an unfortunate and very destructive instinct that seems to permeate the Obama administration about the respective roles of citizens and their government. His position has three problems: one philosophical, one empirical, and one logical.”

MATTHEW LASAR: “Why Wait? Six Ways That Congress Could Fix Copyright Right Now
“The fight against copyright maximalism has largely been negative. To offer something more positive, Public Knowledge (PK for short) has released an Internet Blueprint—six bills that the group says could ‘help make the internet a better place for everyone’ and that ‘Congress could pass today.’ We’re not expecting Congress to pass them today (or tomorrow), but they’re at least an intriguing start point for debate. Here’s a quick version each.”

HEATHER HORN: “What the World Can Learn From Germany’s Debate Over Gender Quotas
“Gender quotas are a terrible idea: They respond to diffuse injustice with directed injustice, reinforce stereotypes they’re meant to combat, and don’t necessarily address the most insidious examples of sexism. But the fact that they’re being proposed in Germany right now might be one of the better things for bourgeois gender inequality in quite some time.”


FIREWORKS – One of the Last States With Fireworks Ban, Mass. Weighs Legalization Bill
“Legislation enabling cities and towns to legalize fireworks sales and usage would lead to more fires, traumatic injuries and greater property damage across Massachusetts, according to the state fire marshal and a burns surgeon.”

FANNIE MAE – Fannie Asks Gov’t For Almost $4.6 Billion After 4Q Lost
“Mortgage giant Fannie Mae said Wednesday that it lost money in its fourth quarter and is asking the federal government for $4.57 billion in aid to cover its deficit.”

FIRST AMENDMENT – House Passes Bill That Would Make Protesting Illegal at Secret Service Covered Events
“The new legislation allows prosecutors to charge anyone who enters a building without permission or with the intent to disrupt a government function with a federal offense if Secret Service is on the scene, but the law stretches to include not just the president’s palatial Pennsylvania Avenue home. Under the law, any building or grounds where the president is visiting — even temporarily — is covered, as is any building or grounds ‘restricted in conjunction with an event designated as a special event of national significance.'”