The Competitive Enterprise Institute Daily Update
Issues in the News
The Supreme Court agrees to examine whether public employee unions must obtain permission from members before spending dues on political causes.
“In Washington v. Washington Education Association, [the Washington State Supreme Court] declared unconstitutional a Washington State law that barred public employee unions from spending a teacher’s service charges on political causes, absent affirmative consent from the teacher. The court ruled that forcing the union to get affirmative consent for such political spending, rather than putting the burden on the teacher to formally make an affirmative objection, burdened the union’s own First Amendment rights. The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal of that ruling, and will hear arguments that it be reversed on January 10.”
France announces the launch of an all-news channel to compete against CNN International and BBC World.
A new strain of avian flu spreads to humans, sparking renewed fears of a global pandemic.
“Vaccination to prevent viral and bacterial diseases is modern medicine's most cost-effective intervention. Vaccines to prevent the expected avian flu pandemic could save the lives of millions—if vaccine R&D were not in such a sorry state, as the result of an unfortunate confluence of biology and public policy.”