CEI Daily - The Durbin Amendment, the Government Shutdown, and Alcohol Regulations


The Durbin Amendment


In The New York Times this week, economist Simon Johnson defends The Durbin Amendment, which places price controls on what credit unions and banks can charge retailers for debit card transactions.


Director of the Center for Investors and Entrepreneurs John Berlau explains why Johnson is essentially promoting the interests of big retailers over the interests of consumers.


"It’s unfortunate that — in contrast to prominent liberals in Congress such as House Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Barney Frank and incoming Democratic National Committee Chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz — Simon is allowing his dislike of the big banks to drive him into bed with giant retail chains such as Wal-Mart and Home Depot who are demanding corporate welfare at the expense of consumers, community banks, and credit unions."




Government Shutdown


The Washington Post has recently tried to drum up public concern about the threat of a government shutdown.


Director of Communications Christine Hall criticizes the Post's take on the shutdown.


"The paper is freaking out over the prospects of, wait for it, a  shutdown of the Washington Monument, the Cherry Blossom Parade, and national parks. Oh, and there’s the Blackberry conundrum and the possible closing of the historic Ford’s Theater.  Now, I am not thrilled about the prospect of these inconveniences. I’m sure loads of tourists have travel plans to D.C. this month and will not be pleased, either. But, two sections over, over on the the WaPo Style section, there’s a helpful article about “10 Things Tourists Can Do — Without Their Uncle Sam.” Whew!  Before reading the Style section, one might have thought life as we know it would come to an end.  It turns out there are alternatives to ogling pandas at the zoo. [...]

    It’d be nice if the WaPo seemed nearly as concerned about the very real fiscal need for spending cuts (a la Paul Ryan’s budget) or at least understanding about why some Americans might be, finally, really peeved at Congress for its profligate taxing, spending and regulating."




Alcohol Regulations


In the most recent "Alcohol Regulation Roundup," Policy Analyst Michelle Minton outlines what lawmakers around the country are doing to increase or cut back on alcohol regulations.


Read "Alcohol Regulation Roundup: April 6, 2011" here.