Elementary concepts of fairness demand that musical artists and performers remain free to negotiate…
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Congress Should Oppose the So-Called "Local Radio Freedom Act"

Elementary concepts of fairness demand that musical artists and performers remain free to negotiate performance rights with broadcasters that seek to play their songs.  Indeed, current law allows artists to mutually bargain with satellite, Internet and cable stations.

The only exception:  traditional AM-FM radio stations, which are unfairly protected by federal law from having to negotiate with artists for performance rights.  This is precisely the sort of crony capitalism against which the American electorate is increasingly irate.

Unfortunately, rather than advocating market reform, some in Congress wish to cement the current protectionist status quo.  Under the so-called "Local Radio Freedom Act," whose very name contradicts its real-world effect, terrestrial radio's unjustifiable…[more]

July 28, 2015 • 03:51 pm

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Notable Quotes
 
On the Democrats' 2016 Presidential Nominee:
 
 

"While in all probability Clinton remains the prohibitive favorite to win the nomination, it is true that her favorable ratings have taken a tumble. For over four years, from 2009 until well into 2013, Clinton's favorable ratings in the Gallup Poll were in the 60's, but a few months into 2013 they started a plunge down to 43 percent. Arguably, her favorable ratings were unsustainably high during her tenure as secretary of State, when she was a diplomat more than a politician. Yet it does raise the question of what happens if the USS HRod begins taking on water. What would Democrats do? Is there an emergency 'break the glass' option if real questions of Clinton's electability arise? It seems extremely unlikely that any one issue could bring Clinton down, but what if she begins to suffer 'death by a thousand cuts'?

"Would Vice President Joe Biden and/or Sen. Elizabeth Warren jump in? Or would/could someone not being currently mentioned throw a hat into the ring, like say, Sen. Sherrod Brown or former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg? Presumably Bloomberg would need to join the Democratic Party, but then again, has Sanders joined yet? Or would O'Malley effectively win the political Powerball by being the only plausible alternative running? While all of this is just idle speculation, it is an interesting hypothetical."

 
 
— Charlie Cook, The Cook Political Report Editor and Publisher
— Charlie Cook, The Cook Political Report Editor and Publisher
Posted July 28, 2015 • 12:22 pm
 
 
On Continuing to Make Light of the IRS Targeting Scandal:
 
 

"No sooner did President Obama claim last week the IRS scandal was just a mirage than new evidence emerged to show it was anything but.

"The conservative group Judicial Watch says documents it obtained 'confirm' the agency targeted the donors of certain tax-exempt organizations. And the Government Accountability Office faulted IRS procedures, saying they failed to prevent bias in the selection of nonprofits for audits. That's key, since the agency has been accused of targeting conservative groups. ...

"Of course, the biggest scandal of all is that Team Obama has managed to stonewall and leave the public hanging. And that no one has been held accountable."

 
 
— New York Post Editorial Board
— New York Post Editorial Board
Posted July 27, 2015 • 12:24 pm
 
 
On Opening a Criminal Investigation into Clinton's Email Account:
 
 

"WASHINGTON -- Two inspectors general have asked the Justice Department to open a criminal investigation into whether sensitive government information was mishandled in connection with the personal email account Hillary Rodham Clinton used as secretary of state, senior government officials said Thursday.

"The request follows an assessment in a June 29 memo by the inspectors general for the State Department and the intelligence agencies that Mrs. Clinton's private account contained 'hundreds of potentially classified emails.' The memo was written to Patrick F. Kennedy, the under secretary of state for management.

"It is not clear if any of the information in the emails was marked as classified by the State Department when Mrs. Clinton sent or received them."

 
 
— Michael S. Schmidt and Matt Apuzzo, The New York Times
— Michael S. Schmidt and Matt Apuzzo, The New York Times
Posted July 24, 2015 • 11:59 am
 
 
On Regretting the Iran Nuclear Deal:
 
 

"A few years from now -- after Iran has used its negotiated breathing space to rearm, ratchet up its terrorist operations, and eventually gain a bomb to blackmail its neighbors -- the current deal will be deeply regretted. Expect a Nobel Peace Prize for Secretary of State John Kerry now, followed by Chamberlain-like infamy later. ...

"China and Russia will never again see any advantage in joining the West in embargoing and sanctioning a would-be nuclear state -- not when such a hard-won common front can become utterly nullified at any moment by a fickle United States. Both powers will grow closer to Iran.

"In 2015, we naively hail peace with honor, but by 2020, sadder and wiser, we will lament war and shame."

 
 
— Victor Davis Hansen, Hoover Institution Senior Fellow and Nationally Syndicated Columnist
— Victor Davis Hansen, Hoover Institution Senior Fellow and Nationally Syndicated Columnist
Posted July 23, 2015 • 12:26 pm
 
 
On Hillary Clinton's Primary Season:
 
 

"She's still an obvious favorite for the nomination, but it's telling that the Clinton campaign is already trying to lower expectations for the New Hampshire primary and Iowa caucuses, suggesting that Bernie Sanders might win some early bouts.

"The point is that personality matters a lot, and no one would confuse Clinton's personality for a secret weapon. It's been a cliche for three decades for Clinton's defenders to say, 'If only you could know the Hillary I know.' That's an unintentionally damning defense. It may be true that she's a wonderful friend to her friends, but as a candidate, she is a remarkably uninspiring, un-charming and un-compelling woman who has every bit as much of a problem connecting to ordinary people as Mitt Romney did. Indeed, like Romney, she has polled poorly (June, CNN) on the question of whether she 'cares about people like you.'"

 
 
— Jonah Goldberg, National Review Senior Editor
— Jonah Goldberg, National Review Senior Editor
Posted July 22, 2015 • 12:05 pm
 
 
On the UN Security Council's Unanimous Approval of the Iran Nuclear Deal:
 
 

"President Obama thinks he has the U.S. Congress right where he wants it as the Members consider his nuclear deal with Iran. Not only do opponents need a two-thirds majority in both houses to stop it, the President has maneuvered to box them in by having the United Nations approve it first.

"That's the meaning of Monday's unanimous vote by the U.N. Security Council approving the deal less than a week after negotiations were completed. ...

"Congress shouldn't fall for it. Other than Israel and the Sunni Arab states, the U.S. has the most to lose from a bad nuclear deal. Iran doesn't call China 'The Great Satan,' and its proxies haven't murdered Russian soldiers. The ballistic missiles that Iran will be able to build with impunity after eight years won't be aimed at Paris. They'll be aimed at U.S. allies, troops and the American homeland."

 
 
— The Editors, The Wall Street Journal
— The Editors, The Wall Street Journal
Posted July 21, 2015 • 12:01 pm
 
 
On the Death of Kate Steinle:
 
 

"The lethal confrontation between African-American Trayvon Martin and 'white Hispanic' George Zimmerman elicited a presidential editorial about the shared racial affinity between the victim and the president. (The president did not include the half-Peruvian George Mesa Zimmerman in such ethnic intimacy.) 'Ferguson' is casually dropped as a racial fillip by the president, as if he is unaware that his own Justice Department did not find officer Darren Wilson culpable in the shooting of strong-armed robber Michael Brown, who rushed him. Even Sandra Fluke, in her quest for cosmic justice in campaigning for the federal government to cover her own birth-control expenses, earned a presidential phone call, as warranting her Susan B. Anthony-like struggle.

"There was no such outreach concerning the tragic fate of Kate Steinle. Her senseless death, for the president, proves so far not a wake-up call about any dubious government policy or dangerous trend in American social life. He apparently does not believe that arbitrarily suspending federal law is scary (cf. his own executive orders), much less that doing so in the case of convicted felons is only doubly so.

"Perhaps the president, who is an advocate of the sort of de facto amnesty that empowered Francisco Lopez, was embarrassed over Kate Steinle's death, and so kept uncharacteristically mum. Perhaps the ethnic divide this time around was not rich enough to be mined -- a felon and shooter of color and an innocent victim without color. Perhaps Obama was afraid that he might say something inane and untoward, in Trayvon Martin style, about the physical resemblance or non-resemblance of the victim to one of his possible offspring. It was this president, remember, who established the principle that, in controversial criminal matters, the chief executive would seek political traction, and thereby has found himself morally wanting through his abject silence in the Steinle case. ...

"Let us be honest: San Francisco's legal nullification is not an act of racial blindness and fairness under the law, but one of political pandering, ethnic chauvinism and misplaced liberal narcissism....

"San Francisco has become one sick city."

 
 
— Victor Davis Hansen, Hoover Institution Senior Fellow and Nationally Syndicated Columnist
— Victor Davis Hansen, Hoover Institution Senior Fellow and Nationally Syndicated Columnist
Posted July 20, 2015 • 12:40 pm
 
 
On ObamaCare's Surging Prices:
 
 

"Americans who purchase health insurance on the Affordable Care Act's exchanges should buckle up. Within the month, state regulators will begin approving premium hikes for plans sold in every state. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has already released the premium increases that health insurers have requested for their 2016 plans. By law, insurers must receive regulatory approval for any increase more than 10% -- and more than 10% is what many of them want.

"The numbers are staggering. According to the rate requests posted on Healthcare.gov, nearly every state has multiple plans that are facing a more than 10% premium increase. Many plans -- including some offered by state-market leaders -- could see hikes of more than 30%, 40% or even 50%. Though most of these requests have not been approved, nor have all of the rate hikes that are less than 10% been unveiled, it is undeniable that millions of Americans are facing double-digit premium increases for health insurance next year."

 
 
— Stephen T. Parente, Health Finance Professor and Univ. of MN Carlson School of Management Associate Dean
— Stephen T. Parente, Health Finance Professor and Univ. of MN Carlson School of Management Associate Dean
Posted July 17, 2015 • 12:56 pm
 
 
On the Need to Reevaluate Sanctuary Policies:
 
 

"A little bit of common sense and discretion might have prevented the killing this month in San Francisco of Kathryn Steinle -- a victim not only of random gunfire but of the mindless handling of the city's immigration policy. ...

"Kathryn Steinle's death ought to be a cause for sober reevaluation of sanctuary policies. Without a cease-fire and a working agreement in this war that has pitted local law enforcement against federal immigration authorities, there will be more innocent casualties."

 
 
— USA TODAY Editorial Board
— USA TODAY Editorial Board
Posted July 16, 2015 • 12:18 pm
 
 
On Tehran's Nuclear Triumph:
 
 

"President Obama was right on Tuesday to hail his nuclear agreement with Iran as historic, though not because of his claim that it will 'prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.' The agreement all but guarantees that Tehran will eventually become a nuclear power, while limiting the ability of a future President to prevent it. ...

"[T]his means that the deal leaves Tehran as a nuclear-threshold state even if it adheres to the terms, able to continue its nuclear research and retain its facilities while it waits for U.N. supervision to end. The other nations of the region will take that point, no matter Mr. Obama's assurances. Instead of eliminating a revolutionary regime's nuclear ambitions, the Vienna accord promises to usher in a new age of nuclear proliferation."

 
 
— The Editors, The Wall Street Journal
— The Editors, The Wall Street Journal
Posted July 15, 2015 • 11:57 am
 
Question of the Week   
Which one of the following became the nationwide symbol of support for the 52 Americans held hostage by the Islamic Republic of Iran for 444 days between 1979 and 1981?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"While in all probability Clinton remains the prohibitive favorite to win the nomination, it is true that her favorable ratings have taken a tumble. For over four years, from 2009 until well into 2013, Clinton's favorable ratings in the Gallup Poll were in the 60's, but a few months into 2013 they started a plunge down to 43 percent. Arguably, her favorable ratings were unsustainably high during her…[more]
 
 
—Charlie Cook, The Cook Political Report Editor and Publisher
— Charlie Cook, The Cook Political Report Editor and Publisher
 
Liberty Poll   

If the campaign for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination were only between Donald Trump and John McCain, for whom would you vote?