Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, hand sanitizer has been in high demand. The FDA has stringent regulations about the ingredients for hand sanitizer. This guidance was relaxed somewhat to allow more production from a variety of alcohol industries, such as fuel alcohol manufacturers. After these industries invested time and money preparing to produce hand sanitizer, the FDA revoked the initial guidance and dictated that all hand sanitizer must comply with the usual standards. Are the actions of the FDA justified out of a concern for safety, or should some regulations be re-evaluated in times of emergency?
T. Elliot Gaiser is an Associate at Boyden Gray & Associates PLLC.Watch this video
Data is being collected on each of us every day by the apps that we use, the websites that we visit, and the services we subscribe to. How is this data used by companies and organizations? What is the difference between data security and data privacy? Where should the balance be struck between privacy and the benefits of increased data collection? This video will discuss these questions and more.Watch this video
Lower prices are generally assumed to benefit consumers. However, predatory pricing – which artificially lowers prices and eliminates competition – is a bad thing for the consumer in the long run. In Brooke Group, the Supreme Court established guidelines for courts to determine when lower pricing is actually predatory pricing. In this video, Charlie Beller discusses the Brooke Group case and its impact on our digitized economy, which is increasingly dominated by free or zero-priced services.Watch this video
Copyright infringement laws dictate serious penalties for digital works that have been reproduced and downloaded. However, streaming has become the new method of choice for illegal piracy. “Display and public performances” laws – which cover streaming – only carry trivial penalties. This is called the “streaming loophole.” Copyright advocates say that new laws must be passed to close the loophole, while internet freedom advocates insist that new laws could harm consumers.
Kevin Madigan is VP, Legal Policy and Copyright Counsel at the Copyright Alliance.Watch this video
Commercial drone services are evolving rapidly but who regulates how and where they operate? The Federal Aviation Administration is authorized to oversee “navigable airspace.” On the other hand, drones fly low to the ground which would implicate property rights, which are governed by state laws. How might these regulatory issues be assessed and resolved, and how could they affect the future of drone technology and usage?
Brent Skorup is a Senior Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.Watch this video
In 2019, California passed AB-5, a law that mandates that most workers should be considered “employees” rather than “independent contractors.” Advocates claim that this law will offer more protection for all workers. Opponents state that this law will stifle innovation and deprive workers of the independence to structure their own relationships.
Alida Kass of the New Jersey Civil Justice Institute explores how the California law compares to other states and the issues that it may raise for workers.Watch this video
Certificate of need laws are state regulations designed to control medical costs. New medical facilities must be assessed and approved by a state board which determines whether such a facility is needed by the community.
Christina Sandefur of the Goldwater Institute explores whether such laws have successfully controlled costs or if they have hindered the competition required to balance healthcare prices.Watch this video
Many national security experts argue that lawful surveillance activities, such as those authorized by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), are necessary to protect the national security of the United States.
In this Fourth Branch video, Matthew Heiman takes a deep dive into this issue from the national security perspective.Watch this video
Did Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations hamper the fight against COVID-19 at a critical juncture? In this short video narrated by Roger Klein, we explore the relationship between the FDA and the CDC in regulating and conducting diagnostic tests.
In 2016, in response to the Zika virus, the FDA designated the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as the country’s only diagnostic test manufacturer. In early February 2020, the CDC was ordered to distribute tests for COVID-19 which were faulty and had to have results verified by the CDC laboratory. Only in mid-March 2020, did the CDC loosen regulations which then allowed private hospitals and labs to develop and conduct their own tests.
Could more have been known about the disease at an earlier date if private testing and treatment had been allowed and encouraged? Should the COVID-19 emergency force us to reevaluate the purpose and use of public health regulations and policies?Watch this video
Across the country, housing in larger cities is becoming more expensive. Lower and middle-class families are being priced out of many of them. This video tells the story of Seattle residents Kip and Michelle Klemz and discusses the role that zoning regulations, specifically those that limit housing density, play in this trend.Watch this video