Today in the News: Marketplace Privacy Protection, Rising Insurance Rates and the Regulation of the Day
Look to the Marketplace for Stronger Privacy Protection
A series of recent high-profile privacy gaffes involving internet firms such as Google, Microsoft and Facebook has spurred a public outcry for stronger privacy protections. Politicians in Congress have responded with a slew of blustering letters, hearings, and legislative threats.
"E-commerce and online advertising sustain over 3 million U.S. jobs and $300 billion in annual economic activity, according to a 2009 study by two Harvard Business School professors. Strict privacy mandates could decimate this industry. This has already happened in the European Union. According to a recent Massachusetts Institute of Technology paper, after the EU implemented a data-privacy law in 2002, the effectiveness of online advertising fell 65%."
Insurance Regulators Approve Increases Based on Obamacare
In Connecticut, insurance rate regulators have approved hikes in insurance premiums of up to 20 percent, agreeing with insurers that Obamacare increased their costs. Some people will now pay thousands of dollars a year more as a result.
CEI’s Counsel for Special Projects Hans Bader notes that this contradicts claims made by President Obama and his aides that the new health care law would cut health care costs and bend the cost curve down.
"As noted earlier, the health care law raises taxes on the middle-class and investors in future years. Obamacare will cause many harms, such as reducing life-saving medical innovation and increasing state budget deficits."
Regulation of the Day
Samuel Burgos is 8 years old. One day he brought a toy gun to school in his backpack. That got him expelled from his Miami school for two years. Toy guns violate his school district’s zero-tolerance policy for weapons.
"The Burgos family has suffered enough. Toy guns are not weapons. They are toys. The school board should exercise a bit of common sense and reinstate Sam immediately."