Hermes Birkin Handbags, NFTs, Trademark Law, and Rothschild (but not Controlling the Weather)

From Hermes Int’l v. Rothschildan opinion issued today by Judge Jed Rakoff (SDNY): Around December 2021, defendant Mason Rothschild created digital images of faux-fur-covered versions of the luxury Birkin handbags of plaintiffs Hermes International and Hermes of Paris, Inc. (collectively, “Hermes”). Rothschild titled these images “MetaBirkins” and sold them using so-called “NFTs” (non-fungible tokens), explained … Read more

Pennsylvania Democrats Say Doug Mastriano Is a Danger to Democracy. Why Did They Help Him Win?

During the chaotic 2016 Republican presidential primary, it was something of an open secret that many Democrats were rooting for Donald Trump to emerge as the GOP nominee. Trump, the story went, would be a complete disaster as a general election candidate and would make Hillary Clinton’s inevitable ascent to the even presidency more of … Read more

Biden’s Plan To Link Federal Transportation Spending to Zoning Reform Could Make the Housing Shortage Worse

President Joe Biden has a new idea for reducing regulatory barriers to new housing construction. Contained within the White House’s expansive new Housing Supply Action Plan is a proposal to tie federal transportation grants to state and local governments reforming their zoning codes. Proponents of this approach argue that the massive amounts of money that … Read more

No, Gas Prices Didn’t Spike Because of ‘Corporate Greed’

The price of gas keeps rising. “The reason for that is because of Putin’s war,” said President Joe Biden. But that’s impossible. Most of the price rise came before Russian President Vladimir Putin attacked Ukraine. So some politicians simply blame “corporate greed.” Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D–RI) accuses the oil industry of collecting “excess profit.” Sen. … Read more