CEI Planet: January – February 2009

View the new Montly Planet by downloading the PDF of the issue. Below you’ll find previews of the articles in this issue:

From The President The Third Way Has Failed By Fred Smith “The Market Has Failed!” is a slogan fit for a bumper sticker. It is simple and concise, and politics is often dominated by imple narratives. Our challenge is to advance an alternative, more ccurate narrative that shows how the global economic crisis flows not from any failure of capitalism, but from the steady blurring of lines between the private and the political worlds. We need our own bumper sticker!

A New Year’s Wish By Sam Kazman Sometimes we’re happy, Sometimes we’re sad. The last few months of bailouts Have really gotten us mad. Those hundred$ of billion$ Of squandered TARP bucks Would make a sane person think We’re governed by yucks, By idiots and laggards. And vultures and dolts; It’s almost enough To make you want to revolt.

Obama Preview: World Trade By Frances B. Smith Increasing liberalization of world trade is one engine behind the dramatic increase in global prosperity since the 950s, yet the country is faced with a negative view of trade and globalization. Much of this was spurred on by the lengthy presidential primaries, where populism and protectionist rhetoric held sway.

Obama Preview: Environment By Iain Murray At this writing, news of President-elect Obama’s first appointments to his environmental team are beginning to trickle in. If the appointments of former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Carol Browner as energy/climate “Czar” and Los Angeles Deputy Mayor Nancy Sutley as chair of the Council on Environmental Quality are anything to go by, that trickle may have become an alarmist flood by the time you read this.

Facebook for Libertarians Bureaucrash launched a social networking site called Bureaucrash Social in early October2008, which is now at the heart ofits operations. Called the “Facebook for libertarians” by some active on the site—which has gained over 100 members per week since it was launched—it’s a place for crashers to share ideas, plan and document activism, and share resources.m, and share resources.

The Good: Free the Oklahoma Three! The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in December declared unconstitutional an Oklahoma law that had been used to indict activist Paul Jacob and two others for the heinous crime of gathering signatures to place a taxpayer bill of rights on the ballot without being a resident of the state. The case may be appealed but CEI Legal Counsel Hans Bader points out that such restrictions have been struck down by a number of federal appeals courts.

The Bad: Bush Seeks to Bail out The Big Three It could have been worse— probably. Yes, President George W. Bush and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson decided in mid-December to use some of the $700 billion in alreadyapproved funds to bail out Detroit’s cash-strapped auto makers. There were two silver linings to this clouded decision. First, Ford refused to take the bailout money. Second, the Senate voted down additional funds for automakers, perhaps signaling bailout fatigue that could carry over into the next Congress.

The Ugly: NBC Pushes “Green Week” In mid-November, NBC held “Green Week,” an annual effort to show viewers ways to “green your routine.” It sounds innocuous enough, but “Green Week” is actually part of a manipulative business strategy employed by General Electric (GE), the owner of NBC.

Media Mentions Compiled by Richard Morrison General Counsel Sam Kazman questions the thinking behind Chevron’s latest ad campaign: “But what Chevron now calls “found energy” is as far removed from discovering oil as a dieting book is from producing food. Chevron seems to have become more apologetic about oil than drug pushers are about drugs. Has it been taken in by the notion of our alleged ‘addiction to oil . . .'”

-Investor’s Buisness Daily, November 13