Government unions: the Praetorian Band of the government

America’s founding fathers knew their ancient history well. The experiences of Greece and Rome were almost the only guides they had when fashioning a government that wasn’t a monarchy. And one thing they feared was what they called “Caesarism”: the … Continue reading

Opening salvos in the teacher union dues case

The briefing in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association is underway. You’ll recall that this Supreme Court case presents the issue of whether public employee unions can garnish the wages of non-union members to support the unions’ collective bargaining and other … Continue reading

President’s weekly report — September 4, 2015

Endangered Species Act:  Delist the Kangaroo Rat The federal government’s intransigence when it comes to delisting recovering species reveals both the government’s disregard for the rule of law and the underlying real goal of so much environmental legislation: to restrict … Continue reading

PLF sues Corps of Engineers for First Amendment retaliation against Duarte Nursery

Today, after the federal court granted leave to file an amended pleading, Duarte Nursery, Inc., and its president, John Duarte, filed this amended complaint against the United States and the Corps of Engineers, to add a claim for First Amendment … Continue reading

Will the Supreme Court value individual rights over public employee unions?

One of the big cases of this Supreme Court term is Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, which will decide if public employee unions can garnish non-union workers’ wages to pay for activities ostensibly related to collective bargaining without the workers’ … Continue reading

President’s weekly report — July 31, 2015

Free speech in Texas We filed this amicus brief asking the Supreme Court to take up Hines v. Alldredge (Texas Board of Veterinary Examiners).  Texas law forbids vets from offering advice without first physically examining the animal. And even though this … Continue reading

NRO piece on PLF suit challenging Oakland’s public art exaction

Earlier this week, National Review Online ran my piece on PLF’s lawsuit against the City of Oakland. The lawsuit challenges an illegal ordinance requiring builders of residential and commercial projects in the City to either produce public art displays on … Continue reading

The government can’t call speech “conduct,” then require a license for it

If the First Amendment means anything, it means the right to speak freely without asking for permission first. Yet in Nebraska, you have to get a government license before advertising.  PLF client Leslie Young helps people to sell their homes … Continue reading

PLF sues to stop unconstitutional public art fee on new homes

Today’s money-no-object urban planning elite have a long list of things they think no modern city should be without, but many have no money to buy the stuff on their list. And, city residents tend not to support tax increases to pay for … Continue reading

Supreme Court orders three U.S. Courts of Appeals to reconsider cases upholding restrictions on speech

On Monday, the Supreme Court ordered three federal appellate courts to reconsider their decisions upholding sign restrictions in light of its recent decision in Reed v. Town of Gilbert. The Court emphasized in Reed that government regulation of speech is … Continue reading