CEI Daily - New Tone, Wisconsin, and Toxic Substances


New Tone


Though commenters on both sides of the political aisle have called for a "new tone" in politics, people continue to frame debates with ad-hominem attacks on partisan figures.


Fellow in Regulatory Studies Ryan Young explains why the public should stop focusing on controversial political figures.


"The Kochs, Soros, and all the other partisan bugbears are interesting people. But they are mere distractions in the search for public policies to promote freedom, prosperity, and human dignity. Anyone genuinely interested in setting a new tone should treat them that way."







Yesterday, Wisconsin Republican senators passed an amended version of Governor Walker's budget bill, which strips workers of collective bargaining rights.


Policy Analyst Vincent Vernuccio explains exactly what the bill does.


"Governor Scott Walker's emergency budget will allow workers to opt out of joining a union and still keep their jobs. It would allow workers to vote every year on whether they want to keep their union. And it would take away the unions' ability to automatically deduct dues from workers' paychecks. All of these threaten organized labor's power by giving workers more choice."



Toxic Substances


Republicans and Democrats seemed to have reached a consensus on modernizing the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).


Director of Risk and Environmental Policy Angela Logomasini explains what the act is--and why Americans should be concerned that our leaders agree on how to modernize it.


"Originally passed in 1976, TSCA is designed to ensure the safe use of industrial chemicals (excluding chemicals regulated on the federal pesticide and cosmetics laws) by granting the EPA authority to review both new and existing chemicals and to regulate any chemical that the agency found posed an 'unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment.' According to a 2007 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, TSCA covers 82,000 chemicals, of which 62,000 were already in commerce when EPA began implementation in 1979. EPA has reviewed 45,000 new chemicals and has placed 20,000 in the inventory as those allowed in commerce, while restricting the use of five existing chemicals."