September 13, 2018

AFF Community

Weekly Writers Round-Up: Social Media Regulation, Online Sales Tax, and Zoning Laws

By: Josh Evans

Each week, we’ll be featuring the work of the alumni and current participants of AFF’s Writing Fellows Program. A few highlights from the past week are below. For more information on the program, see here.

Regulating Social Media Giants Is a Road to Big Tech Tyranny by Tyler Grant (Summer 2018) in The Washington Examiner
Last week, President Trump tweeted about potentially exploring regulation for companies such as Google, citing a report that claimed searching for “Trump News” pulls up disproportionately left-leaning results. Seemingly overnight, some conservatives like Laura Ingraham have made an about-face from their usual skepticism of government intervention in private business to floating full-throated support for government regulation of Google on national television…

America’s New Sales-Tax Mess by Andrew Wilford (Spring 2017) in National Review
Following the Supreme Court’s decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, one of the smallest states in the country — South Dakota, ranked 46th in population and 47th in GDP — has unfortunately been allowed to define what it means to be a big business or a small business when it comes to corporate sales taxes. Now, overzealous bureaucrats across the country are rushing to use the court’s decision to beef up state tax revenue…

Light and Air, Sound and Fury; or, Was the Equitable Life Building Panic Only About Shadows? by Nolan Gray (Fall 2015) in Market Urbanism
When I first became interested in urban planning, I believed a piece of professional mythology that went like this: “For all its faults, Euclidean zoning was a well-meaning effort to expand nuisance regulation in the face of the urban industrialization. It was later practitioners who used zoning for selfish and exclusionary purposes.” While not totally without basis, I now think this view is wrong. Today I would like to show how the iconic example of a nuisance that supposedly motivated Euclidean zoning—the Equitable Life Building in New York City—was in large part controversial because it threatened the interests of existing landlords…