Partly Free Speech


New at Reason: The Institute for Justice's Rick Elgendy laments the Supreme Court's failure to close the "commercial speech" loophole in Nike vs. Kasky, and shows what happens when people without Nike's deep pockets get singled out for commercial speech prosecution. Jonathan Rauch summarized Nike vs. Kasky, and its First Amendment implications, back in June.


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  1. Since this is really a “comment” posting, I probably shouldn’t. But, to copy Socrates during the Apology, I will anyway.

    Everyone has made good points against the special category of “commercial” speech, but they haven’t thought of the downside that is specific to the Nike case. I live in Chicago, and here in Illinois we have a law that forces you to disclose any problems with a house. Now the law has been mixed, but it does force the owner to answer truthfully if asked.

    If the Supremes had sided with Nike, it most certainly would have invalidated that law. I like this law. Now again I will agree with everyone concerning the abuses, but I can see really serious problems if, in trying to sell you something I can lie. Isn’t it bad enough we allow politicians to lie on thier applications?

    I could, for instance, lie about my school history, on the basis that an F was not a real F, but was instead a politically motivated F. And now I am protected. Well, actually I would never be allowed to do this. But Enron? No, we need to look at this issue seriously, but lets not encourage newspeak.

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