Ladies’ night bar specials are illegal in Minnesota. They are unfair gender discrimination, according to the Minnesota Department of Human Rights.
Of course, few of the people actually affected by this blatant discrimination have a problem with it. Women save money on drinks. Men who buy women drinks save money. And by increasing the female-to-male ratio, ladies’ nights make men happy for other reasons.
If anything, enforcing the ladies’ night ban is a waste of state resources at a time when Minnesota is facing a severe budget crunch.
So why are regulators bothering? Blame lawyers. A separate case in New York has brought publicity to this divisive issue:
New York attorney Roy Den Hollander has for years made his living filing gender discrimination complaints for men, including himself.
Who cares? He does.
“[Men] have to pay more for the services [clubs] offer just because an accident of nature made them one sex or another?” he said. “That’s the basis of discrimination, and it shouldn’t be allowed.”
Or Mr. Hollander could simply choose to patronize bars that don’t do ladies’ nights. Other people seem to enjoy that particular form of gender discrimination. Let them.
Posted in Regulation of the Day
Tagged bars, discrimination, gender discrimination, human rights, ladies night, lawyers, minnesota, minnesota department of human rights, Nanny State, regulation, Regulation of the Day, roy den hollander
While I was away on vacation, the Detroit News ran an article by Hans Bader and me about Intel’s claim that the EU’s $1.45 billion fine against them violates its human rights.
Posted in Antitrust, Economics, Publications, Technology
Tagged Antitrust, detroit news, eu, european union, hans bader, human rights, intel, neelie kroes
Intel’s defense in its EU antitrust case has taken the surprising line that the company’s human rights were violated. Over at Real Clear Markets, CEI colleague Hans Bader and I take a closer look. We conclude that Intel actually has a pretty good argument.
Corporations have human rights because doing so greatly reduces transaction costs: “suppose your company wants to buy some computer chips from Intel. You could have each shareholder sign the sales contract – good luck finding them all – or you could treat Intel as a person with the right to sign a contract, and the obligation to honor it. To deal with one person or millions? That is why corporations have legal standing as individuals.”
In short: no corporate rights, no modern economy. No exaggeration. There is a reason why legal conventions emerge as they do, even if they appear strange at first glance.
Iain Murray was kind enough to point out to me that the idea of corporate human rights has very deep roots. The 18th-century legal scholar William Blackstone, in his revered analysis of the English common law, wrote that corporations have the right “[T]o sue or be sued,, implead or be impleaded, grant or receive, by its corporate name, and do all other acts as persons may.”*
*William Blackstone, Commentaries on the Laws of England, Volume 1: Of the Rights of Persons, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979 ), p. 463.
Posted in Antitrust, Economics, Law, Publications
Tagged Antitrust, cei, coase, commentaries on the laws of england, contract, contract law, eu, hans bader, human rights, iain murray, intel, ronald coase, transaction costs, william blackstone