It’s still early in the 2016 presidential race, but voters are making one thing abundantly clear: they’re fed up with Washington and its cronyism.
And with a revolving door allowing professional activists with an eye toward government overreach and job killing to move back and forth between lobbying the Administration and working for the same federal agencies, it’s not hard to see why voters are disgusted with the status quo.
Take the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). It’s the five-member federal board in charge of determining when employees have the right to join a union, overseeing union elections, and preventing unfair labor practices. The members who sit on the board almost exclusively come from firms who have represented or worked for labor unions, and over the past year the NLRB has issued a host of decisions considered major wins for Big Labor, and losses for America’s small business owners.
One of the most glaring examples of the NLRB’s revolving door problem is Craig Becker. Before serving on the NLRB, he worked for two of the nation’s largest unions, the AFL-CIO and the Service Employees International Union. After his tenure on the NLRB, he returned to the AFL-CIO as the union’s general counsel.
Unfortunately, the NLRB is far from the only federal agency staffed with former employees of big-moneyed special interest groups. The Environmental Protection Agency’s political appointees are pulled almost exclusively from the nation’s big environmental activist groups, including the Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), according to an investigation from E&E Legal.
These environmental activist groups run major campaigns aimed at completely eliminating fossil fuels in favor of renewables like wind and solar, which provide a paltry 5 percent of nation’s electricity generation, and would jack up power costs for both families and businesses. With the agency stacked with environmental group cronies, the current administration has issued a host of strict new environmental regulations expected to cost the economy over a trillion dollars.
In fact, these groups have been so involved with the EPA that the New York Times reported the agency used the NRDC’s draft carbon proposal as the “blueprint” to create the Clean Power Plan rule issued by the agency this summer.
Even our newest federal agency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) suffers from this revolving door problem. The CFPB was set up after the mortgage crisis and recession in the last 2000s to increase oversight of the financial services industry. The agency is stacked with employees from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac—the lenders blamed for causing much of the sub-prime mortgage crisis and activist groups such as the Center for Responsible Lending, which push to severely tighten restrictions on financial services companies and lenders. Its employees regularly take their knowledge of the CFPB’s goals and regulatory plans to more lucrative positions in the private sector.
Earlier this month, Brian Webster, senior staff in the CFPB’s mortgage division, announced he was leaving the agency for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. Before working in mortgages for the CFPB, Webster worked for Freddie Mac.
The revolving door problem is so bad at the CFPB it prompted inquiries from Congress after the CFPB’s deputy director and several senior staffers left the agency to start a new company using “extensive regulatory, industry, and capital markets expertise to provide unique counsel” to financial services companies.
After helping the Administration enact costly rules that advance their ideological agenda at the expense of job creators, these activists at the NLRB, EPA, and CFPB move into cushy, high paying private sector careers. Is it any wonder voters are fed up with Washington politics?
This story originally appeared on BREITBART.com, click here to see the original article.
Sometimes examples of Crony Capitalism happen right in front of us and we don’t notice it. Other times it is blatantly obvious. Last week Jim Cramer criticized Solar City for just that, “This is crony capitalism, because the only way these guys make money is through tax credits.”
Solar City calls 19 States in the US home, including Arizona. And while they promote “No upfront costs” and “lower energy rates”* they fail to disclose that they do so through government issued subsidies. These government backed loans and subsidies are paid for by tax payers and create a rigged market.
Watch his warning about these Crony Capitalists below…
Grassroots lobbying is when people at a local level engage in efforts to influence public policy by directly contacting their legislators.
One of Market Freedom Alliance’s commitments to the State or Arizona is voter education. In that spirit we have created our own how-to guide to Grassroots Lobbying. Learn how you have be a lobbyist from your own home and see how one person and make a difference.
Our goal is to enpower Arizona voters to effectivly communicate what issues are most importaint to other voters, LD Chairs, Legilators, and community members.
To get your FREE copy of The Free Market Guide to Grassroots Lobbying join our mailing list here.
January 19, 2016 Luke Bernard, Brand Ambassador from Page Springs Cellars
While the Wine Fight is shaping up to be one of the most importaint bills affecting small businesses in Arizona, it is also one that many people still don’t know about. “While promoting enhanced access, it would in hand increase higher margins for wineries of all sizes. This bill would also remove certain caps that simply hold back the developmental growth of wineries such as PSC” – Luke Benard, Page Springs Cellars.
Read more from one of our own wineries about this importaint cause here.
Despite widespread support for expanding consumer choice in wine, many consumers are still prohibited by state law from purchasing the wines they want directly from wineries and retailers.
Thirty years ago, only four states allowed for legal, regulated winery-to-consumer wine shipments. Now, 41 states allow such shipments from out of state wineries, although just 12 allow retailers to do the same. The U.S. Supreme Court, Federal Trade Commission, state alcohol regulators, and state legislators have joined consumers to help update archaic laws. Many of these laws were merely designed to entrench state-sanctioned monopolies in wine distribution.
Interstate wine shipments using a common carrier, from a winery to an adult consumer 21 years or older, are now allowed in 41 states, which cumulatively represent 90% of wine consumption. Such shipments are still prohibited in the following 9 states as of September: AL, DE, KY (felony), MA (to open 1/1/15), MS, OK, PA (special interstate by 3-tier only), SD, and UT (felony for winery to direct ship).
What’s driving this consumer rights issue?
Each vintage, more wines are produced than can be stocked or sold by wholesalers or retailers. The number of U.S. wineries has increased by over 500% to more than 7,000 in the past 30 years – there is at least one winery in every state. But U.S. wineries produce thousands of new wines each vintage, and nearly all wineries are small, family-owned and operated producers. The top 50 largest wineries produce more than 90% of America’s wine. But less than 17% of U.S. wineries have national distribution (source: Wine Institute member survey, 2003).
Consumer demand for these wines is thriving. Consumers expect to be able to purchase the wines they want, in the manner of their choosing: from retailers, at the winery, and remotely by telephone, fax, and online. The U.S. Supreme Court, Federal Trade Commission, and many state legislators support them, and support expanding consumer choice in wine, especially using the “model direct shipping bill,” a proven piece of legislation used by the majority of states.
But wholesaler middlemen seek to protect their state-sanctioned monopolies. The number of wholesalers decreased by over 75% during the same 30-year period. Now, two or three wholesalers alone determine what wines are available in most states. The 10 largest wholesalers control more than 60% of the U.S. market (source: IMPACT newsletter).
Solution The Model Direct Shipping Bill satisfies consumer demand for choice in wines and how they are delivered, satisfies regulatory requirements and creates a new source for state tax revenues. The solution was cited by the U.S. Supreme Court in its May 2005 ruling (Granholm v. Heald), by the Federal Trade Commission on numerous occasions, and is working successfully in the legal states.
Proponents Millions of wine enthusiasts, regulators and tax collector officials in states that have passed favorable legislation as well as America’s mostly family-owned winery farms located in all 50 states, support limited, regulated direct-to-consumer shipments.
What are consumer supporters doing to support the cause? Citizens and winery plaintiffs have worked together to sue in numerous states and took the case successfully to the U.S. Supreme Court. On May 16, 2005, the High Court ruled that it is unconstitutional for states to allow their wineries to ship to their consumers, and deny that same privilege to out-of-state wineries.
Opponents Wine wholesalers (aka distributors) and their national trade association, the Wine & Spirit Wholesalers of America..
What you can do Check out our Take Action page here where you can find the links and letter to send to your local Legilators. Also make sure to check out our friends at freethegrapes.org for more information and to stay current.
Still want more, read this article published by the Arizona Republic!