CEI’s short film I, Pencil, based on Leonard Read’s 1958 essay, won the first annual Reason Video Prize on November 6. The prize honors short-form films on individual rights, limited government and the free market. Nicole Ciandella wrote the adapted screenplay for the film.
George Mason University law professor and Mercatus Center senior scholar Todd Zywicki discusses his paper, “The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Savior or Menace?” His thesis is that this “independent agency inside another independent agency, presided over by a single director who is insulated from presidential removal,” which is also immune to Congress’ power of the purse, is a return to a Nixon-era approach to agency structure. He gives several recommendations for improving actual consumer protection.
During the government shutdown, the National Park Service has barricaded and even closed numerous open-air memorials and parks – including, in some cases, privately owned parks. CEI has filed a series of Freedom of Information Act requests to find out who made the decisions and why. Senior Attorney and Counsel for Special Projects Hans Bader discusses the case.
On Sunday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi opposed the notion of federal spending cuts, saying that “The cupboard is bare” and “There’s no more cuts to make.” This not actually being the case, Senior Communications Director Brian McNicoll lists off a series of programs and departments that should be removed from the very full federal cupboard.
Ron Binz is President Obama’s choice to head FERC, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. William Yeatman, in a new report, shows why Binz’s disregard for reliable, low-priced electricity, along with several ethical and ideological red flags, make him less than an ideal nominee.
Ronald Coase, an extremely influential economist and winner of the 1991 economics Nobel, has passed away at the age of 102. CEI Founder and Chairman Fred Smith discusses Coase’s major works, the animating themes that unite them, and the fact that Coase was always a man of great personal and intellectual humility — a trait that escapes many of his peers. In 2004, Smith sat down with Coase for an extended interview, which you can watch here.