Policy Laundering: how the US Trade Rep is trading away America’s right to unlock its devices

Some of America’s worst copyright laws were passed through a profoundly undemocratic process called “policy laundering.” This is what happens when an administration can’t get Congress to pass a bad copyright law, so the US Trade Representative instead signs the US up to international treaties requiring America to pass the unpopular law. The 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act is one of the policy-laundered laws that has done enormous harm to the country.

Now the USTR is busy again, signing America up to treaties that undermine attempts by Congress to make phone unlocking and jailbreaking legal. America’s official representative is going to other countries and telling them, “If you want to do business with America, you must ban jailbreaking and phone unlocking, and in return, we promise to keep those activities on the banned list, too.”

In other words, America’s trade reps are cramming a massively unpopular, harmful policy down the throats of its trading partners, while simultaneously locking America into the same policy, undermining Congress at the same time.

Click to read more, including a call to action.

‘His Horse Was Named Death’

Ten years after the invasion of Iraq, Tim McLaughlin’s remarkable diary of the war reveals a personal, untold history of America’s fraught adventure in the Middle East.


The letter he wrote to an injured soldier’s parents was, well, you’ll have to read it yourself. The quote is <loosely> from Johnny Cash’s The Man Comes Around and the book of Revelations.

Click for the Foreign Policy piece: Iraq War Diaries.

F1 2013 – Mercedes AMG – Pit stop training with Hamilton & Rosberg

This isn’t even a race, it’s just training.

Sounds good, too.