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In recent years the Supreme Court has decided a spate of cases about the compelled subsidization of speech. All have involved federal statutes creating industry boards empowered to tax producers of specific agricultural products in order to promote and stabilize the market in those products. Some of these statutes were enacted during the New Deal era, whereas others are quite recent. In the past decade these statutes have been challenged on the ground that they compel producers to subsidize objectionable commercial advertisements. The resulting cases have raised conceptually difficult and complex First Amendment questions, which the Court has proved unable to master.
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