As we've highlighted, the dangerous effort to weaken critical patent protections for U.S. pharmaceutical…
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Image of the Day: Private Sector Pharmaceutical Investment Propels Innovation

As we've highlighted, the dangerous effort to weaken critical patent protections for U.S. pharmaceutical innovators often minimizes the role of private investment and exaggerates the role of public funding.  This offers a critical corrective at a moment when American drug and vaccine innovation is more important than ever:

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="530"] The Critical Role of Private Pharmaceutical Investment[/caption]…[more]

May 14, 2021 • 09:16 AM

Liberty Update

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Dude, Where’s My “Blue Wave?” Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, November 19 2020
[E]ven in the most dysfunctional blue states, voters chose to put the brakes on leftist governance.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D – New York) never has been one whose visage might be confused with Ronald Reagan’s trademark sunny demeanor.  

As the dust settles following this year’s elections, however, Schumer has assumed an even more dour expression than normal.  The shock of realizing that a new Democratic Senate majority he anticipated will instead likely remain a minority understandably has that effect.  

Meanwhile, over on the House side of Capitol Hill, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D – California) assumed a similarly grim appearance after the expanded House majority that she anticipated instead became a substantively narrowed margin.  It even generated speculation that her status as Speaker may be insecure.  Republicans could ultimately gain up to 13 seats upon vote count certification, after Democrats openly predicted a gain of 20 seats.  

Even the leftist-cheerleading Washington Post grimly lamented the outlook for Schumer, Pelosi and potential president Joe Biden:  

Assuming Republicans maintain control of the Senate by winning one or both of the runoffs in Georgia on January 5, which many strategists in both parties expect them to pull off, Biden would be the first president since George H.W. Bush in 1989 to take office without controlling both chambers of Congress.  In fact, Biden would be the first Democratic president since Grover Cleveland in 1885 to take office with his party not in control of both chambers…  But Biden appears to have won the presidency with the weakest House coattails of any president since John F. Kennedy in 1960.  

So much for that anticipated “Blue Wave.”  

Just as importantly, leftist hopes crumbled ruinously across state elections as well, including gubernatorial races, legislative races and critical ballot issue initiatives.  

Currently, Republicans control 59 legislative chambers, both houses of 29 state legislatures and in 21 states control both legislative houses as well as the governor’s mansion.  Democrats, by comparison, control just 39 legislative chambers, fully control only 19 legislatures and in just 15 states control the governor’s mansion as well as both legislative chambers.  Entering this election, Democrats eyed flips in numerous states, including Texas, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona, North Carolina and Minnesota. 

Instead, Democrats didn’t flip a single one.  Republicans, in contrast, added two states – Montana and New Hampshire – to their 21 states in which they control both houses of legislature and the governor’s mansion.  Accordingly, leftist dreams of achieving state-level policy gains have also crumbled this month.  

Those Republican gains at the state level will play out at the federal level as well.  That’s because they will exert more rather than less control in Congressional redistricting maps following completion of the 2020 decennial census.  So get ready for more leftist complaints that “gerrymandering” somehow afflicts them unfairly, never mind that gerrymandering has been around since the early 19th century, and that such complaints were never heard following the 2000 census and others.  Regardless, the left’s dreams of achieving even greater gains in future years through redistricting after capturing more statehouses are now dashed.  

Just as critically, and perhaps even more visibly, left-wing ballot initiatives failed across the nation, even in the deepest of blue states.  

In California, for instance, voters approved a ballot measure protecting “gig economy” workers’ contract-worker status, against labor union and leftist efforts to reclassify them as traditional employees.  A contrary result would’ve threatened the existence of ride services like Uber and Lyft, as well as food delivery services like DoorDash and Grubhub, amid an ongoing coronavirus pandemic when such services are more vital than ever.  

Also in California, voters rejected the effort to reinstitute discriminatory “affirmative action” racial preferences, as well as a proposal to increase property taxes in an already-overtaxed state.  Illinois also rejected a proposed income tax increase, showing that even in the most dysfunctional blue states, voters chose to put the brakes on leftist governance.  

Returning to the federal level for a moment, leftists hold out hope that a potential Biden Administration can govern via executive order and administrative agency fiat in the same “pen and phone” manner that Barack Obama infamously popularized.  With three new Supreme Court justices appointed by President Trump, however, anticipate far less judicial deference toward Obama-style attempts to circumvent Congress to achieve policy ends.  

So much for that approaching dawn of leftist governance.  At the Congressional, state legislative and ballot initiative levels, the “Blue Wave” we were promised didn’t even approach the shore.  

Quiz Question   
What was the last year in which gold was used as the basis for valuing the U.S. dollar?
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Notable Quote   
 
"We've heard calls in recent years for an ever-widening category of 'terrorists' to encompass groups from the Jan. 6 rioters to antifa to the the Ku Klux Klan. So it is surprising that the White House and the media have referred to the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attackers simply as 'hackers.' 'DarkSide' is not just a collection of hackers -- it's a group of terrorists. And the only thing more concerning…[more]
 
 
—Jonathan Turley, George Washington University Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law and Practicing Criminal Defense Attorney
— Jonathan Turley, George Washington University Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law and Practicing Criminal Defense Attorney
 
Liberty Poll   

Which one of the following do you view as the greatest threat to the U.S. economy as we recover from the coronavirus disruption?