September 20 roundup

  • Oregon: “Union-Backed Ballot Initiative Would Limit Grocery Stores to 2 Self-Checkout Machines” [Christian Britschgi, Reason]
  • Not unexpectedly, given its own precedent, Ninth Circuit rules Idaho inmate entitled to sex reassignment surgery [Amanda Peacher and James Dawson, NPR; pre-ruling (July) KRCC/NPR podcast and interview with Peacher, I’m quoted as in earlier coverage; earlier]
  • I wrote a personal recollection at Cato of philanthropist David Koch;
  • “Flight attendants and airport staff now get trained to intervene in what federal officials (falsely) portray as an epidemic of airline-based sex trafficking which can be spotted by good Samaritans who know the ‘signs.'” And mistakes will happen [Elizabeth Nolan Brown, Reason]
  • Population growth has caused the Ninth Circuit to bulge at the seams. Left-right political advantage isn’t a good reason to break it up, but there are plenty of nonpolitical reasons that are good [Ilya Shapiro and Nathan Harvey, George Mason Law Review]
  • “The legal profession was regarded by both the authors of The Federalist and Alexis de Tocqueville as the anchor of the republic —- a barrier to destabilizing innovation and a constraint on excessive democratic passions.” What happened? [John McGinnis]


  • In re Oregon: “Union-Backed Ballot Initiative Would Limit Grocery Stores to 2 Self-Checkout Machines” – Where does the government get the authority to tell a grocer exactly how much technology it can use to conduct private business? Ipso dixit?

    In re “The legal profession was regarded…” – This is a well written article (and it reminds me I need to read de Tocqueville).

  • Self-checkout limits: Unions are convinced that the way to gain jobs is to reduce efficiency (stopping automation, featherbedding), whereas the only true path to wealth is an increase in efficiency. They are convinced of this in spite of business after business that closes during a strike or moves out of Portland or Seattle or NYC in response to a higher min wage.

    The idea that people are using the airlines for sex trafficking is beyond stupid. Sex trafficking is kidnapping–someone is going to take their kidnap victim through an airport full of cops and people where they could scream for help? Really? Most arrests for “sex trafficking” are actually just plain old prostitution, dressed up with a scary name anyway.