Obama’s honeymoon is over, and so is my intermittent blogging, because business groups have finally started their machines! Christopher Conkey reports in the Journal:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce said it will spend $100 million in an effort to stem the “rapidly growing influence of government over private-sector activity,” in a major new move by the powerful business group to counter the Obama administration’s regulatory agenda.
Chamber president Thomas Donohue said his organization is launching its “Campaign for Free Enterprise” because an “avalanche of new rules, restrictions, mandates and taxes” could “seriously undermine the wealth and job-creating capacity of the nation.” Funds from the Chamber’s campaign will be largely spent on advertising and lobbying.
This is reminiscent of a similar campaign, started by the National Association of Manufacturers, to fight the New Deal. And smaller efforts are afoot as well. Frank Davies of the San Jose Merc reports that:
NetChoice, a group backed by AOL, Yahoo, eBay, Oracle and other online companies, launched a campaign Tuesday against proposed laws across the country that it says would harm e-commerce and consumers. The list is dubbed iAwful, a catchy acronym for Internet Advocates’ Watchlist for Ugly Laws.
The list, mostly state proposals, includes North Carolina bills to impose sales tax on digital downloads and on the resale of sports and concert tickets, and New York’s effort to tax job-seeking and rÃ©sumÃ© services.
Yes, choice, that’s what we want. Of course, state laws are a form of democratic choice. But they’re bad choices! Obviously NetChoice will make better ones.
Davies’ report continues: “States are hurting and looking for taxes from anywhere they can,” said Steve DelBianco, executive director of NetChoice. “We’re also seeing more business online, and a disruptive technology that kids understand better than many legislators, so it’s a perfect storm.”
Wait, I recognize that name. Steve DelBianco…isn’t that the same Steve DelBianco that works for the libertarian Association for Competitive Technology (ACT), where he is Vice President for Public Policy? And isn’t it interesting that NewChoice’s postal address is the same as ACT’s?