CEI Daily - Union Hypocrisy, Federal Spending, and Internet Poker


Union Hypocrisy


A union in Seattle is combating an altruistic offer by a private company because it would mean the loss of a union contract.


Research Associate Trey Kovacs explains.


"Cleanscapes, a private trash-collection company, offered its services free of charge to the city of Seattle to clean the Westlake Park. The altruistic offer was met with firm opposition by local union officials of state workers. This should seem out of character for unions, considering the recent publicizing of coalitions with Rainbow/PUSH and the Blue-Green Alliance. These coalitions are supposed to highlight how unions help build stronger and cleaner communities. Dmitri Iglitzin, attorney for Local 1239, Public Service and Industrial Employees union, said, 'This is an effort by a commercial company to move in on a potential city contract.'"




Federal Spending


Obama talks about lowering the federal debt; but he hasn't provided a clear plan for changing the culture of spending in Washington.


Vice President Iain Murray talks about what's next for the country if the government continues in its current direction.


"So the battle in Washington must continue, and be fought to a decisive end. We should be clear, however, where the president and the Democrats want to take us. They want to make the U.S. into just another European country, with high levels of publicly-provided social services maintained by excessive taxes on the wealth-producing class. Vast numbers would be dependent for their livelihood — either via welfare or employment — on a government that exists as a gigantic money-go-round."




Internet Poker


The largest internet poker websites were suspended last week.


Policy Analyst Brian McGraw responds to news of the sites' shutdown.


"It is a sad day for a free society. This might be the final straw for online poker. A bill to move forward with federal legalization and regulation failed in Congress last year, though may still succeed this year. Various state legislatures, including the District of Columbia, are moving forward with patchwork regulations. Unfortunately, the outlook is dim on the state level as many such programs will be run by government monopolies — supporting the paternalistic idea that we can only gamble under the watchful eye of government."