The U.S. government is preparing to transfer the oversight it has had over the Internet—oversight that has helped keep the Internet open and free. Heritage’s Amy Payne explains what’s going on:

If you’re following the debate, the acronym you need to know is ICANN. That stands for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, a nonprofit that manages Internet domain names (website addresses). It has been under the supervision of the U.S. Department of Commerce, but now the Obama administration has begun the process of transferring ICANN into the international arena.

Some countries, like Russia and China, are eager for the United Nations to take over the oversight role. That’s because they favor censorship and other limitations on online speech and commerce.

Heritage legal expert Paul Rosenzweig said in testimony before a House committee last week that lawmakers should be cautious “lest the transition destroy the openness and freedom of the network.”

Watch this video from the Foundry for a primer on the topic:

Do you think the “international community” should play a role in overseeing the Internet?

It shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that two poorly crafted parts of the new farm bill are expected to cost taxpayers billions of dollars. Heritage Foundation experts Daren Bakst and Rachel Sheffield explain: Continue Reading »

Obama greatly understated deficits in his budget

When it comes to managing the deficit, President Obama’s 2015 budget relies heavily on hope. That’s the takeaway from a new analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

The administration makes quite a few convenient and overly-rosy assumptions about our struggling economy. This leads to wildly differing projections about future deficits.

The chart above shows the gaping differences between the CBO’s projections and Obama’s. But even under the White House’s scenario, the deficit will never be less than $400 billion, and the budget will never be close to balanced.

Whose projections do you believe?

Photo: Xinhua/Sipa USA/Newscom

This September, Congress will have the opportunity to terminate a federal “bank” that doles out loans to foreign countries and well-connected major corporations while leaving taxpayers like you are on the hook for any losses.

Heritage Foundation expert Diane Katz explains that the costs of the Depression-era Ex-Im Bank outweigh the benefits:

Continue Reading »

Photo: Thinkstock

Despite trillions of dollars in fiscal and monetary stimulus aimed at boosting employment and economic growth, America’s weak labor market persists.

The numbers are grim: 10.5 million Americans are unemployed, and labor force participation is near 35-year lows. Meanwhile, the Obama administration has overseen 157 major new regulations, which have cost Americans $73 billion annually.

Rather than throw more money and more government at the problem, House conservatives have proposed the JOBS Act, which Heritage Foundation expert Rachel Greszler says would “boost economic growth and employment by freeing up the labor market, reducing unnecessary and harmful regulations, and unleashing federal lands for productive use.”

She continues: Continue Reading »

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