America’s legacy of unparalleled copyright protections and free market orientation has cultivated…
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“Blanket Licensing” – a Collectivist, Bureaucratic, One-Size-Fits-All Deprivation of Property Rights Proposal

America’s legacy of unparalleled copyright protections and free market orientation has cultivated a music industry unrivaled in today’s world or throughout human history.

From the first days of the phonograph, through the jazz age, through the rock era, through disco, through country, through hip-hop and every other popular musical iteration since its advent, it’s not by accident that we lead the world in the same manner in which we lead in such industries as cinema and television programming.  We can thank our nation’s emphasis on strong copyright protections.

Unfortunately, that reality doesn’t deter some activists from periodically advocating a more collectivist, top-down governmental reordering of the music industry in a way that would deprive artists and creators of their…[more]

July 06, 2020 • 02:32 PM

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Chuck Schumer Is Right: Why Democrats Are Flailing Print
By Troy Senik
Thursday, December 04 2014
During Obama’s tenure, he’s lost a total of 79 seats in the House, more than any president since Harry Truman. ... This is more than just the center not holding. This is the bottom falling out.

Here’s a basic fact about modern American politics: a diverse party is a successful party. This isn’t diversity as measured by race, gender or any of the other variables characteristic of identity politics; it’s diversity of ideas.

When Democrats lose elections, there’s always carping about the fact that their candidates were just “GOP lite.” Similarly, when Republicans go down to defeat, there is often grumbling about the fact that not enough “true conservatives” were running. Both sides are deluding themselves.

There isn’t a majority of American voters at either ideological extreme (although conservatives dramatically outnumber liberals). That means that for a party to win elections nationwide, it has to build coalitions consisting of its most fervent supporters and more moderate elements.

Republicans, for instance, can win with strongly conservative candidates in the South, the Plains, and parts of the Interior West, but they tend to need more centrist figures to win in the Upper Midwest or make even slight inroads into the West Coast or the Northeast. For Democrats, that equation is reversed.

There was a time, late in the George W. Bush Administration, when leading Democrats realized this. Foremost among them was Rahm Emanuel, then a congressman from Illinois, who was leading the recruitment of Democratic congressional candidates.

Emanuel, whose political acumen shouldn’t be underestimated, realized that recruiting Democrats who were pro-life, in favor of Second Amendment rights or tough on immigration would be necessary for the party to have a shot at winning across the country. The result: startling Democratic majorities coming out of the 2006 and 2008 elections.

One man blew all that success to hell: Barack Obama.

During Obama’s tenure, he’s lost a total of 79 seats in the House, more than any president since Harry Truman. And things haven’t been much better in the Senate. If, as expected, Mary Landrieu loses her runoff election in Louisiana this weekend, Obama will have seen his party drop 15 seats in the upper chamber during his tenure. This is more than just the center not holding. This is the bottom falling out.

What happened? Well, the Democratic Party governed in a way that only satisfied the ideological core of its coalition. If you’re a liberal on the West Coast or in the elite precincts of the Northeast, you likely don’t see much to object to in a progressive agenda that includes government-run healthcare, amnesty by fiat and anti-global warming measures. If you’re the sort of blue-collar everyman who’s supposedly the heart and soul of the party, however, you may be left feeling a little cold.

This dynamic is precisely why New York Senator Chuck Schumer — another liberal pol with electoral instincts far sharper than the president’s — recently copped to the fact that ObamaCare cut against his party’s core political interests, noting, “After passing the stimulus, Democrats should have continued to propose middle-class-oriented programs and built on the partial success of the stimulus, but unfortunately Democrats blew the opportunity the American people gave them. We took their mandate and put all of our focus on the wrong problem—health care reform."

Putting aside the “partial success” dodge about the stimulus (it’s telling that even Schumer feels the need to qualify his praise), this analysis is almost entirely sound. Democrats would have been politically safer — and, in truth, on much sounder policy footing — if they had limited health care reform to an effort to take care of the uninsured. Instead, they overhauled the entire American health care system. The goal was never just to care for the poor. The goal was to make health care into a public utility.

Schumer, of course, is a little late to the party. The dynamic he’s describing would have been obvious to any seasoned political observer before ObamaCare ever passed. So why did the White House miss it? They probably didn’t. They probably just didn’t care.

For all of his talk about being a unifying figure, Barack Obama falls squarely into the left-progressive camp of the Democratic Party, a product of a blue state urban center marinated in academia and community organizing. He has no cultural or ideological affinity with the voters who can swell Democratic ranks to majority status. One need only look at the Democratic bloodbath in the Midwest — where 10 of the 12 governors (only Missouri and Minnesota are exceptions) are now Republicans — to see the electoral costs of that hubris.

Obama and his coterie fell for all of the hype about the “Coalition of the Ascendant” — the alliance of minorities, millennials, and unmarried women that fueled his electoral success — as the lynchpin of Democratic success. While those groups helped, they were insufficient for victory without an assist from the white working class. Now that Obama’s numbers have plummeted amongst that group (his approval is at 27 percent amongst whites without college degrees), the Democratic coalition is in mortal peril for the short term.

The scions of the coastal media centers have long demonstrated a blindness to the fact that they’re not representative of the rest of the country. That sentiment is pervasive throughout the Obama White House, which has none of the common touch that the Clinton Administration once possessed. As a result, Democrats are left representing a tiny fraction of the nation.  You could drive from deep blue California to deep blue New York and only pass through two states in between — Colorado and Pennsylvania — with Democratic governors. As long as that remains the case — as long as Democrats are all Whole Foods and no Kroger — they shouldn’t expect their fortunes to change.

Question of the Week   
John Adams, then-delegate to the Continental Congress and signatory to the Declaration of Independence, said this “… will be the most memorable in the history of America …” with regard to which historic day?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
"Never before has a speech extolling America's virtues and the marvels or the nation's heroes played to such poor -- and completely dishonest -- reviews.At Mount Rushmore on Friday night, President Trump gave a speech that was very tough on the woke Left, while largely celebrating America -- its Founders, its ideals and freedom, its capacity for self-renewal, its astonishing variety of geniuses, adventurers…[more]
—Rich Lowry, National Review Editor
— Rich Lowry, National Review Editor
Liberty Poll   

Has Covid-19 significantly changed your family's typical July 4th weekend activities or are they essentially the same as in previous years?