Student’s Suspension For Defending Classmate Against Bully Rescinded After Outcry

life lesson: what's right and what's permitted doesn't always matchAn update on
Mark Betterson
, the student athlete in Florida who received a
10-day suspension for intervening in a fight whose instigator was
charged criminally,
via the local NBC affiliate
:

An East Lee County High School student, who was facing
suspension and possible expulsion for hitting a fellow student,
attended a punishment hearing Monday morning. Now, Mark Betterson
says he will be allowed to return to school Tuesday. His
punishment?

… Despite claims of good intentions on Betterson’s part for jumping
to the student’s defense, the principal reminded students rules
were broken.

The kind of zero tolerance policies that don’t distinguish
between aggression and self-defense protect school administrators
from having to make decisions and judgment calls which could be
second-guessed or even pilloried. Even where such policies reflect
the kinds of laws that exist outside of school, they don’t respect
the right to self-defense that precedes and trumps them.

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Cathy Young on the Left’s Soft Spot For Communism

CommunismThe motives behind
the reluctance of the left, including many liberals, to fully
acknowledge communism’s evil are stated with startling candor by
the late leftist writer/journalist Daniel Singer in a 1999 essay in
The Nation reviewing The Black Book of Communism,
the monumental study of communist terror and repression compiled by
a team of historians. Such a one-sided account, Singer
lamented—missing the good bits such as “enthusiasm, construction,
the spread of education and social advancement”—makes it impossible
to understand why so many Western leftists were drawn to communism
and willing to overlook its crimes. Besides, he wrote, communism’s
record of atrocity was being used to discredit “the possibility of
radical transformation” and force people to resign themselves to
the status quo. In other words: coming to grips with communism’s
true nature makes the Western left look bad and discourages the
quest for utopia. For all the revelations of its bloody crimes,
writes Cathy Young, the romanticized view of communism as a failed
but noble venture has yet to get a stake through the heart.

View this article.

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Cathy Young on the Left's Soft Spot For Communism

CommunismThe motives behind
the reluctance of the left, including many liberals, to fully
acknowledge communism’s evil are stated with startling candor by
the late leftist writer/journalist Daniel Singer in a 1999 essay in
The Nation reviewing The Black Book of Communism,
the monumental study of communist terror and repression compiled by
a team of historians. Such a one-sided account, Singer
lamented—missing the good bits such as “enthusiasm, construction,
the spread of education and social advancement”—makes it impossible
to understand why so many Western leftists were drawn to communism
and willing to overlook its crimes. Besides, he wrote, communism’s
record of atrocity was being used to discredit “the possibility of
radical transformation” and force people to resign themselves to
the status quo. In other words: coming to grips with communism’s
true nature makes the Western left look bad and discourages the
quest for utopia. For all the revelations of its bloody crimes,
writes Cathy Young, the romanticized view of communism as a failed
but noble venture has yet to get a stake through the heart.

View this article.

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Video: Charles Nichols Challenges California’s Open Carry Ban

On Thursday, February 13, 2014, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of
Appeals ruled that
California’s longstanding restrictions on carrying concealed
handguns in public conflict with the Second Amendment
, finding
that California’s “may issue” standard, which requires that
applicants demonstrate “good cause” for needing a concealed carry
permit, undermines the Constitutional right to bear arms. Legal
analysts expect the government to appeal the decision, which could
send the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. 

This ruling was made possible, in part, by California’s 2011 ban
on the open carry of unloaded firearms. Without the option to carry
either openly or concealed, the court had few options but to find
California’s gun laws overly restrictive. 

In light of this major gun rights ruling, take a look at Reason
TV’s 2012 interview with Charles Nichols, president of California Right to
Carry
, about his legal challenges to California’s gun laws.
Originally released on March 19, 2012.  The original text is
below.

“It’s unconstitutional to ban an entire class of weapons, one
that the public find most useful for self-defense,” says Charles
Nichols, president of California Right To Carry and the man behind
the first lawsuit to challenge California’s open carry gun ban.

Nichols sat down with Reason.tv’s Tim Cavanaugh to discuss his
lawsuit, which is actually targeting the original ban from the
1970s that prohibited the carrying of loaded weapons. They
discussed his prospects for success, as well as California’s
extremely strict gun control laws and how they might hold up in a
post-DC v. Heller world.

About 6:14 minutes.

Interview by Tim Cavanaugh. Edited by Zach Weissmueller. Shot by
Paul Detrick, Anthony Fisher, and Weissmueller.

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Video: Charles Nichols Challenges California's Open Carry Ban

On Thursday, February 13, 2014, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of
Appeals ruled that
California’s longstanding restrictions on carrying concealed
handguns in public conflict with the Second Amendment
, finding
that California’s “may issue” standard, which requires that
applicants demonstrate “good cause” for needing a concealed carry
permit, undermines the Constitutional right to bear arms. Legal
analysts expect the government to appeal the decision, which could
send the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. 

This ruling was made possible, in part, by California’s 2011 ban
on the open carry of unloaded firearms. Without the option to carry
either openly or concealed, the court had few options but to find
California’s gun laws overly restrictive. 

In light of this major gun rights ruling, take a look at Reason
TV’s 2012 interview with Charles Nichols, president of California Right to
Carry
, about his legal challenges to California’s gun laws.
Originally released on March 19, 2012.  The original text is
below.

“It’s unconstitutional to ban an entire class of weapons, one
that the public find most useful for self-defense,” says Charles
Nichols, president of California Right To Carry and the man behind
the first lawsuit to challenge California’s open carry gun ban.

Nichols sat down with Reason.tv’s Tim Cavanaugh to discuss his
lawsuit, which is actually targeting the original ban from the
1970s that prohibited the carrying of loaded weapons. They
discussed his prospects for success, as well as California’s
extremely strict gun control laws and how they might hold up in a
post-DC v. Heller world.

About 6:14 minutes.

Interview by Tim Cavanaugh. Edited by Zach Weissmueller. Shot by
Paul Detrick, Anthony Fisher, and Weissmueller.

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Brew City Taxi Wars: The Fight for Transportation Freedom in Milwaukee

The Institute for Justice (IJ), the nation’s leading libertarian
law firm, sealed its victory last week in a hard-fought case
that will crack open Milwaukee’s cab industry. Twenty-two-years
ago, Brew City capped the number of cabs permitted to pick up
passengers off the street at 321, which works out to about one taxi
for every 1850 residents. (Washington, Ghaleb Ibrahim, a Milwaukee cab driver who sued the city to lift its cap on taxi permits |||D.C., by comparison, has about
one cab for every 80 residents.) These permits—which aren’t
technically medallions but function the same way—sell for about
$150,000 a piece.
Taxi magnates Joe and Mike Sanfelippo
own about half the total,
which have a combined value of more than $20 million.

In its case, IJ represented three immigrant cab drivers suing
for an opportunity to acquire their own cab permits on the grounds
that the cap violuates the equal protection clause in the Wisconsin
Constitution. Their win means the city will award 100 new
permits
to cabbies in a lottery next month.

Taxi cartels often thwart political reform efforts, but IJ’s
victory demonstrates yet again how the fight can be won in the
courthouse. Over the years, IJ has scored wins to liberalize
transportation poilcy in Denver, Las Vegas, and
New York
City
. It’s currently fighting cases in Portland and Tampa.

But there’s an even more powerful tool for battling
transportation cartels: technology. On Thursday, Uber, the
high-tech car service that’s upending taxi markets in cities all
over the world,
opened for business in Milwaukee
. If the company’s service
proves as popular in Milwaukee as it has in other cities, an extra
100—or 100,000—cab permits won’t matter much.

I’m reminded of the horse-railway operators that bribed their
way into obtaining exclusive operating franchises in
nineteenth-century cities. How much are those franchises worth
today?

Uber App |||Milwaukee’s cab
wars are just getting started. There are
rumblings that the city may sue Uber
, and the Sanfelippo
brothers are considering legal action. In a phone interview, Red
Christensen, a vice president in the Sanfelippo brothers’ taxi
company, told me that “there’s no need for additional taxicabs
in this market,” and that Uber is operating “in violation of city
law.”


“As a company that operates in the public trust,” Christensen
said, “our concern is for passengers getting into a car that
doesn’t have proper insurance, such as what happened with
a six-year-old child in San Francisco.” Christensen
was referring to Sofia Liu, who was killed by an Uber driver
on New Year’s Eve. Taxi cartels in cities all over the country are
shamelessly using this tragedy in an effort to undermine Uber and
protect their own interests. (I recently
wrote about this issiue in The Daily Beast
.)

IJ’s Anthony Sanders, the lead attorney in the Milwaukee cab
case, hasn’t done a formal analysis of the issue, but says he
doesn’t think Uber is violating any laws because the company is
only working with drivers already licensed to operate a car service
in the city. Since Uber drivers don’t pick up passengers that hail
them on the street, they’re not required to have one of the city’s
321 cab permits.

In a statement, Uber said the service it’s providing in
Milwaukee “connects riders with commercially licensed and insured
drivers.”

Sanders says Uber’s entrance into the city “presents all kinds
of opportunities for entrepreneurs including my clients, and
it should be very welcome for everyone except the existing permit
holders.”

Rob Montz recently covered D.C.’s Uber Wars for Reason TV:

Nick Gillespie and I covered a 2011 fight over a proposed
medallion system in the district—a story that briefly landed me in
jail.

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Clean Debt-Limit Increases are for Suckers or, Tomorrow We Scrimp But Tonight We Spend Like There’s No Tomorrow!

 

Earlier in the week, the House and Senate passed a
“clean” debt-limit increase
which allows the federal government
to borrow more money without even pretending to restrain future
outlays.

Last October, when talk of government shutdown was in the air, I
recorded the video above arguing the only good debt deal was a
dirty debt deal.

Click above to watch “3 Reasons We Need a Dirty Deal on
Debt Ceiling.” Here’s part of
the argument
:

As the Congressional Budget
Office (CBO) warns, “increased
borrowing by the federal government would eventually reduce private
investment in productive capital” while also increasing the risk of
a fiscal crisis spurred by jumpy investors worried about the
ability or willingness of the feds to pay back lenders.

None of this is controversial. Indeed, back in 2008, Candidate
Obama was pretty eloquent on the need to “break
that cycle of debt
” created by Republican government under
George W. Bush.“we’ve lived through an era of easy money,” he
crooned in one of his stump speeches, “in which we were allowed and
even encouraged to spend without limits; to borrow instead of
save.” And what was it he used to say about increasing the
debt ceiling when he was just a wet-behind-ears senator? That
raising the debt limit signaled “a failure of leadership” and
“reckless policies” that were “shifting the burden of bad
choices today onto the backs of our children and
grandchildren.”

But today, all Obama can talk about are “clean” CRs and “clean”
debt-limit increases. This is what my colleague Matt Welch calls
“junky logic,” the sort of magical thinking particularly strong
among addicts who are always “gonna
kick tomorrow
”. Really, man, this is the last time.


Read more here.

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Clean Debt-Limit Increases are for Suckers or, Tomorrow We Scrimp But Tonight We Spend Like There's No Tomorrow!

 

Earlier in the week, the House and Senate passed a
“clean” debt-limit increase
which allows the federal government
to borrow more money without even pretending to restrain future
outlays.

Last October, when talk of government shutdown was in the air, I
recorded the video above arguing the only good debt deal was a
dirty debt deal.

Click above to watch “3 Reasons We Need a Dirty Deal on
Debt Ceiling.” Here’s part of
the argument
:

As the Congressional Budget
Office (CBO) warns, “increased
borrowing by the federal government would eventually reduce private
investment in productive capital” while also increasing the risk of
a fiscal crisis spurred by jumpy investors worried about the
ability or willingness of the feds to pay back lenders.

None of this is controversial. Indeed, back in 2008, Candidate
Obama was pretty eloquent on the need to “break
that cycle of debt
” created by Republican government under
George W. Bush.“we’ve lived through an era of easy money,” he
crooned in one of his stump speeches, “in which we were allowed and
even encouraged to spend without limits; to borrow instead of
save.” And what was it he used to say about increasing the
debt ceiling when he was just a wet-behind-ears senator? That
raising the debt limit signaled “a failure of leadership” and
“reckless policies” that were “shifting the burden of bad
choices today onto the backs of our children and
grandchildren.”

But today, all Obama can talk about are “clean” CRs and “clean”
debt-limit increases. This is what my colleague Matt Welch calls
“junky logic,” the sort of magical thinking particularly strong
among addicts who are always “gonna
kick tomorrow
”. Really, man, this is the last time.


Read more here.

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Baylen Linnekin on Montana’s Efforts to Loosen Food and Agricultural Regulations

Farmer's marketMontana is looking to loosen some food
regulations in the state. By passing a 2013 law, HB 630, Montana
legislators required regulators there to find ways to streamline
and loosen the state’s tangled web of food regulations. How complex
are some of the state’s overlapping livestock, produce, and health
regulations? At one of the listening sessions, Joel Clairmont, the
deputy director of Montana’s Department of Agriculture, explained
how in one instance he and several existing businesses were forced
by his fellow regulators to wait more than five years to cut
through the red tape necessary to establish a dried beef business.
In short, writes Baylen Linnekin, there’s no shortage of areas of
food and agricultural regulation that Montana’s legislators can’t
work to improve.

View this article.

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Baylen Linnekin on Montana's Efforts to Loosen Food and Agricultural Regulations

Farmer's marketMontana is looking to loosen some food
regulations in the state. By passing a 2013 law, HB 630, Montana
legislators required regulators there to find ways to streamline
and loosen the state’s tangled web of food regulations. How complex
are some of the state’s overlapping livestock, produce, and health
regulations? At one of the listening sessions, Joel Clairmont, the
deputy director of Montana’s Department of Agriculture, explained
how in one instance he and several existing businesses were forced
by his fellow regulators to wait more than five years to cut
through the red tape necessary to establish a dried beef business.
In short, writes Baylen Linnekin, there’s no shortage of areas of
food and agricultural regulation that Montana’s legislators can’t
work to improve.

View this article.

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