CEI - Nanny State Regulations, Ethanol, and Net Neutrality


Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Nanny State Regulations


San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is forcing city retailers to post radiation-emission facts next to cell phones.


According to CEI Vice President Iain Murray, nuisance regulations like this one are what turned the United Kingdom into a "nanny state run amok."


"Laws seeped and snuck into the fabric of British society without much opposition because they weren't recognized as the threats to freedom they are. Insidiously, this encroachment on liberty happened slowly enough to pass by largely unnoticed. Now similar policies threaten to change American society. Instead of federal laws, many nanny-state regulations are coming into effect at the state and local levels, helped along by aggressive campaigns from leftist advocacy groups."






Ethanol groups claim that the government is skewing the market against them by subsidizing fossil fuel production.


CEI Research Associate Brian McGraw points out that renewable energy companies are benefiting far more from government intervention than their oil and gas competitors.


"According to a report by the National Taxpayers Union, future subsidies for renewable energy sources will be much larger than subsidies received by the oil and gas industry. This is because mandated usage of biofuels is expected to increase. The numbers above, from a report compiled by the Joint Tax Committee, calculate an average of $12.5 billion in subsidies for the renewable industry, and $0.9 billion for oil and gas. Even if the amounts are much closer, the renewable industry comes out way ahead on a per unit basis."




Net Neutrality


Online MBA is marketing an infographic "15 Facts About Net Neutrality." One "fact" is that the main opponents of net neutrality are cable and hardware companies.


CEI Vice President Wayne Crews argues that net neutrality will have negative consequences for all internet users, not just those in the telecomm industry.


"Rather than net neutrality, CEOs and Congress need to insist upon Agency Neutrality.  We need hands off, not public policy that picks arbitrarily between the content and infrastructure sectors, creating uncertainty in the communications marketplace seemingly as an end in itself.  The so-called non-discrimination principle, the one FCC is trying to strongarm into place now even without any congressional authority, itself bizarrely discriminates against infrastructure creation as an enterpeneurial phenomenon as such; and the very fact that policymakers allegedly expert in communications don’t know this or care about the creation of customized networks underscores the need to stop them."