February 16th, 2018 at 12:21 pm
Image of the Day: SpaceX Also Means Lower Cost to U.S. Taxpayers
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Earlier this week, we continued our efforts to highlight how Elon Musk and SpaceX have propelled American space exploration from the private sector.  In that vein, UnbiasedAmerica illustrates vividly how this month’s SpaceX Falcon Heavy launch also means significant savings for U.S. taxpayers over equivalent predecessors:

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SpaceX Success

SpaceX Success


February 12th, 2018 at 3:34 pm
SpaceX: Private Sector Propels Space Exploration
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Quick:  Name some areas in which government outperforms its private sector counterpart.

Give up?  Don’t be too hard on yourself.  It’s difficult, even impossible to recall any.

That includes space technology.

Last week, Elon Musk’s SpaceX launched the most powerful rocket in the world, the Falcon Heavy, as reported by The Wall Street Journal:

Space Exploration Technologies Corp. successfully launched the Falcon Heavy rocket Tuesday on its initial test flight, marking another coup for founder Elon Musk…   With throngs of spectators on hand, the closely held Southern California company defied industry critics by flying the world’s most powerful rocket since U.S. astronauts landed on the moon almost five decades ago.  The 230-foot rocket, which featured 27 engines with the combined thrust of some 18 Boeing Co. 747 jumbo jets, climbed into clear skies at 3:45 p.m. local time.  It carried a Tesla roadster as a dummy payload and publicity stunt.”

Importantly, the article notes that cost-efficiency stands among the Falcon Heavy’s paramount accomplishments:

Large, reusable rockets such as the Falcon Heavy are ideal for deep-space transport from a cost perspective, according to Howard McCurdy, a space historian who teaches at American University.  ‘That’s where the heavy-lift design truly shines,’ he said before the launch.  Given President Donald Trump’s official policy of combining federal and private assets to explore the Moon, Mr. McCurdy called the SpaceX rocket ‘a very important step in that direction…  SpaceX has revolutionized the launch business by vertically integrating operations, slashing prices and reusing the main engines and lower stage of its existing workhorse rockets, the Falcon 9 fleet.”

Additionally, SpaceX’s success marks further progress in remedying a problem that we at CFIF have highlighted for some time:  the dangerous and embarrassing U.S. reliance upon Russian rocketry to continue our space program.

So congratulations to Mr. Musk and SpaceX.  Going forward, it offers cause for optimism and yet another example of private sector success and superior efficiency.


February 12th, 2018 at 2:52 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Ross Marchand, Director of Policy at the Taxpayers Protection Alliance: Sugar Subsidies;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: Robert Norton, Vice President and General Counsel of Hillsdale College: President Trump and Religious Freedom;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Ilya Shapiro, Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies and Editor-in-Chief, Cato Supreme Court Review: SCOTUS Half-time Report;

4:45 CDT/5:45 pm EDT: Alex Brill, Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute: Entitlement Reform and Tax Reform;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Andrew Och, Award Winning Television Producer, “First Ladies Man” and Author of Unusual for their Time: On the Road with America’s First Ladies Volumes 1 and 2: Valentine’s Day and Romance in the White House;

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: Timothy Lee, CFIF’s Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Affairs: Economic Growth in America; and

5:15 CDT/6:15 pm EDT: Cecily Welsh, Member of Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida: GLOW Fun Run/Walk5K.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


February 5th, 2018 at 1:47 pm
Music Industry Fairness – 2018 Offers a Perfect Opportunity for Reform
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

We at CFIF have long advocated greater fairness for musical performers in securing fairness for their performance rights.

Under byzantine laws, artists receive just compensation whenever their post-1972 recordings are played, but in many cases not for their pre-1972 recordings.  That’s an indefensible and arbitrary artifact that has persisted far too long.  Why should Neil Diamond receive payment whenever “America” is played, but not classics like “Solitary Man?”

Fortunately, the opportunity to correct that unfairness has arrived.  Even better, legislation to correct the existing flawed system arrives alongside other music legislation that galvanizes the coalition to finally correct the situation.  As a result, a broad coalition of music organizations representing everyone from songwriters, composers, performers, publishers and labels support three new pieces of legislation, as summarized cogently by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA):

The Music Modernization Act would be the most significant update to music copyright law in over a generation, and represents unprecedented compromise across all aspects of the music industry.  The bill reforms Section 115 of the U.S. Copyright Act to create a single licensing entity that administers the mechanical reproduction rights for all digital uses of musical compositions – like those used in interactive streaming models offered by Apple, Spotify, Amazon, Pandora, Google and others.  It also repeals Section 114(i) and, consistent with most federal litigation, utilizes random assignment of judges to decide ASCAP and BMI rate-setting cases – two provisions that will enable fairer outcomes for songwriters and composers.

The CLASSICS Act (Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, Service, & Important Contributions to Society Act) would benefit artists and music creators who recorded music before 1972 by establishing royalty payments whenever their music is played on digital radio.  SoundExchange would distribute royalties for pre-1972 recordings played by Internet, cable and satellite radio services just as it does for post-1972 recordings.  Currently, only sound recordings made after 1972 receive payments from digital radio services under federal law.

The AMP Act (Allocation for Music Producers Act) for the first time adds producers and engineers, who play an indispensable role in the creation of sound recordings, to U.S. copyright law.  The bill codifies into law the producer’s right to collect digital royalties and provides a consistent, permanent process for studio professionals to receive royalties for their contributions to the creation of music.”

Unfairness has persisted too long in America’s system of compensating musicians for performance of their songs.  The emerging coalition coalescing around these key pieces of legislation, which CFIF strongly urges all members of the House and Senate to support, and the White House to sign, allow a unified effort to finally bring reform in 2018.


February 1st, 2018 at 12:38 pm
Image of the Day: Good News on Middle-Class Shrinkage
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

We often hear lamentations regarding the shrinking U.S. middle class, and toxic prescriptions from people like Senator Bernie Sanders on how to “save” it.  Courtesy of American Enterprise Institute, using U.S. Census data, that shrinkage has actually been a largely positive thing:

Middle Class Moves Up

Middle Class Moves Up

It’s another testament to how America remains the Land of Opportunity, and that Ronald Reagan’s famed optimism remains applicable today.


January 29th, 2018 at 4:09 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Show Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print
Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Tommy Binion, Director of Congressional and Executive Branch Relations at The Heritage Foundation: State of the Union Address;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: John P. Bailey, Visiting Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute: Artificial Intelligence and Job Skills;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Catherine Engelbrecht, Founder of True the Vote: IRS Lawsuit and Legislative Action;

4:45 CDT/5:45 pm EDT: Quin Hillyer, Contributing Editor of National Review magazine, Senior Editor for The American Spectator magazine, and Political Commentator: Bipartisanship and Divisiveness in America;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Chris Hand, Speechwriter, Author, and Campaign Press Secretary and Senate Press Secretary for former Florida Governor and then-U.S. Senator Bob Graham: “American: The Owner’s Manual, You Can Fight City Hall-And Win”; and

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: William J. Conti, Partner at Baker & Hostetler and Political Expert: Government Shutdown, Immigration Policy and President Trump’s relationship with Justice Department Special Counsel Robert Mueller.


Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


January 23rd, 2018 at 11:42 am
Myth Versus Fact: Paying “Fair Share” of Taxes
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Are wealthier Americans paying their “fair share” of taxes?

No.  Assuming that one measures “fair share” as a rough equivalency between income earned and income taxes paid, wealthy Americans pay far more than their fair share, as helpfully illustrated by the Tax Foundation:

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Fair Share?

"Fair Share?"

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January 17th, 2018 at 1:07 pm
Image of the Day: Myth Versus Fact Regarding Corporate Profits
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

An instructive myth-versus-fact visual when it comes to public assumptions regarding corporate profits, courtesy of AEI:

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Myth Versus Fact:  Corporate Profits

Myth Versus Fact: Corporate Profits

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January 12th, 2018 at 8:16 am
Image of the Day: Obama Apologists Seek Credit for Roaring Trump Economy
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

Since World War II, the U.S. economy has averaged 3.3% growth per year.  Under Barack Obama, we never even hit 3%, instead averaging below 2%.  His apologists rationalized that “secular stagnation” had made 3% an unattainable goal, but both quarters under President Trump have already averaged over 3%.  So like clockwork, leftists attempt to credit Obama for something they claimed was no longer possible:

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January 11th, 2018 at 10:02 am
Ramirez Cartoon: Seriously?
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.


January 9th, 2018 at 11:05 am
NY Times Continues Its Surrender March to Trump Economic Bump
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

In last week’s Liberty Update, we highlighted how when even The New York Times acknowledges how Trump Administration policies have turbocharged the sluggish economy he inherited, the debate  over whether the economy benefits from more federal regulation or less federal regulation is won.  This is the same Times that features far-left economist Paul Krugman, who predicted upon Trump’s election that markets would crash and “never” recover.

Well, we’re happy to highlight how the slow surrender march at the Times continues under the headline “Companies Are Handing Out Bonuses Thanks to the Tax Law.  Is It a Publicity Stunt?” Their snarky addendum is understandable coming from them, but their introduction acknowledges reality:

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The big corporate tax break that became law last month is great news for companies and their investors.  But what about employees?  How much of the corporate windfall will go to workers via higher wages?

Since President Trump signed the $1.5 trillion tax cut into law on Dec. 22, nearly 20 large companies have announced some form of bonus or wage hike for their employees.”

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It proceeds to list some of those companies, including AT&T, Comcast, Southwest Airlines, American Airlines and others.

In last week’s Liberty Update feature we noted how their January 1 story admitted that  the good economic news it detailed occurred before the tax reform legislation had even passed.  Now that it has, we’re glad to see that the Times at least continues its sudden trend of acknowledging reality.


January 8th, 2018 at 3:59 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Show Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print
Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.”

Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Marc Scribner, Senior Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute: Infrastructure Spending and Drones;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: Dr. Susan MacManus, Professor in Political Science at the University of South Florida: 2018 Legislative Session and Business Incentives;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Tzvi Kahn, Senior Iran Analyst at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies: Iran;

4:45 CDT/5:45 pm EDT: Pete Sepp, President of National Taxpayers Union: The Days Following Tax Reform;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Michelle Minton, Senior Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute: Trump Marijuana Policy;

5:15 CDT/6:15 pm EDT: Jarrett Stepman, Editor for the Daily Signal at The Heritage Foundation: Fake News; and

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: Raheel Raza, President of the Council for Muslims Facing Tomorrow and Clarion Project Advisory Board Member: Trump’s Decision on Jerusalem.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


January 4th, 2018 at 9:42 am
Image of the Day: Gallup Illustrates Trump Economic Bump
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

In our weekly Liberty Update, we highlight how in just one year, the deregulatory Trump economic bump is now so inescapable that even The New York Times acknowledged it in its January 1, 2018 edition.  Given that consumer spending accounts for approximately two-thirds of the U.S. economy, Gallup’s annual average U.S. economic confidence index is similarly illustrative.  For 2016, despite years of supposed prosperity under Barack Obama, the index stagnated at -10.  In just one year since Trump’s deregulatory and lower-tax administration began?  Already +6 for the year, the first time in over a decade:

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Instant Trump Bump

Instant Trump Bump

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December 27th, 2017 at 5:37 pm
Ramirez Cartoon: National Disgrace
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.


December 19th, 2017 at 3:38 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn Radio” Show Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print
Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.”

Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Ryan Mauro, Clarion Project’s Shillman Fellow and National Security Analyst: NYC Terror Attacks/ISIS;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: Hadley Heath Manning, Director of Policy at the Independent Women’s Forum: Individual Mandate;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: William J. Conti, Partner at Baker & Hostetler and Political Analyst: Tax Reform and Alabama and the Effect on 2018;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Andrew Och, Award Winning TV Producer, The First Ladies Man and Author: Unusual For Their Time: On the Road with America’s First Ladies, Volume Two; and

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: Timothy Lee, CFIF’s Senior Vice President for Legal and Public Affairs, and Mike Bates, Radio Show Host at WEBY 1330AM: Debate on Net Neutrality.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


December 19th, 2017 at 6:16 am
CFIF Joins Coalition Urging Strong IP Protections for Any Renegotiated NAFTA Deal
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

In a letter sent to Ambassador Robert E. Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative, the Center for Individual Freedom joined with a coalition of 25 organizations to urge strong intellectual property protections for any renegotiated NAFTA deal.

The letter, which was organized by the American Conservative Union, can be read by clicking here.


December 13th, 2017 at 10:33 am
The Jerusalem Recognition: Before and After
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.

Tags:

December 11th, 2017 at 4:42 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn Radio” Show Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print

Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Glenn Lammi, Chief Counsel, Washington Legal Foundation Legal Studies Division: Food-Labeling Class Action Lawsuits and FDA’s Return to National Regulation of Consumer Products;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: Peter Cove, Advocate for Private Solutions to Welfare Dependency and Author of “Poor No More”: Why Entitlement Programs Should Have a Work Component;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Representative Francis Rooney (R-FL): Offshore Drilling in the Gulf of Mexico Not a Fit for Florida;

4:45 CDT/5:45 pm EDT: Robert J. Smith, Distinguished Fellow, Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute: Federal Land Use and the Antiquities Act;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: James Phillips, Senior Research Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at The Heritage Foundation: Trump’s Decision on Jerusalem;

5:15 CDT/6:15 pm EDT: Cleta Mitchell, Partner, Foley & Lardner LLP: Donor Privacy from Government Abuse; and

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: Sally Pipes, President and CEO, Thomas W. Smith Fellow in Health Care Policy at the Pacific Research Institute: HHS Nominee Alex Azar.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.


December 5th, 2017 at 12:26 pm
Image of the Day: Leftist Net Neutrality Illogic
Posted by Timothy Lee Print

This actually captures the illogic among those who advocate tighter federal government control over the internet fairly well:

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Net Neut Illogic

Net Neut Illogic

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November 27th, 2017 at 2:20 pm
This Week’s “Your Turn” Radio Show Lineup
Posted by CFIF Staff Print
Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: Former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, Spokesman for Right on Crime: Criminal Justice Reform;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: Jessica Melugin, Adjunct Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute: Net Neutrality and the FCC;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Quin Hillyer, Contributing Editor of National Review Magazine, a Senior Editor for The American Spectator magazine and Author: “Mad Jones, Heretic”;

4:45 CDT/5:45 pm EDT: Andrew Moylan, Executive Vice President of National Taxpayers Union Foundation: Tax Reform;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Phil Kerpen, President of American Commitment: Senator Bob Melendez Corruption Trial Update;

5:15 CDT/6:15 pm EDT: Travis Korson, Director of Communications at the Frontiers of Freedom: EPA Reforms; and

5:30 CDT/6:30 pm EDT: Timothy Lee, CFIF’s Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Affairs: Donor Privacy.

Listen live on the Internet here. Call in to share your comments or ask questions of today’s guests at (850) 623-1330.