A filter by any other name

December 11, 2014

From Peter Gregory

It’s gotten worse.

Remember last week we told you how Australia wasn’t a low taxing country after all? The IPA’s Dr Mikayla Novak’s analysis of new data for 2012 released by the OECD in Paris yesterday shows that Australians are being taxed more every year:

Here is the press release Mikayla put out this morning, here is her report on the previous data and here is her Factsheet:

Where have all the entrepreneurs gone? That’s the question the IPA’s Ian Mence Fellow for Entrepreneurship Dominic Talimanidis asked in his recent report featured in The Australian Financial Review ($) on Tuesday:


Here’s the Factsheet on it and here is Dominic’s press release

What filters which internet sites you can view, but is not an internet filter? The government’s new online piracy scheme, according to Malcolm Turnbull and George Brandis. The IPA’s Chris Berg disagrees.

Two weeks ago I said the IPA had made it as a social phenomenon because we got more boos than Rupert Murdoch at a Save the ABC rally – a few days ago, the IPA was attacked by a Nobel Prize winner!

The Economist has picked its best books for 2014. Guess which comes out on top in the economics section? Typical from The Economist

And it was revealed in The Herald Sun on Monday that Melbourne City Council have set up a program whereby Melburnians can email the city’s trees. Yep, that happened.

If you think that’s bad, two weeks ago the Chinese government banned puns on radio and television. For example, jokes about a man from Fruitvale, Colorado being arrested for pointing a banana at police would land you in trouble – even though it actually happened in the same week.

As featured on Friday in The Australian ($), the IPA’s Director of the Legal Rights Project Simon Breheny and Morgan Begg released a report showing 262 breaches of fundamental legal rights in federal laws. Here is their press release and here is Simon’s piece explaining the report in The Australian on the same day.

And, featured in The Australian ($) today, this report from Chris Berg and Darcy Allen argues that over-regulation threatens the sharing economy revolution. Here is their press release.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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Australia low taxing…if you don’t count all the taxes

December 4, 2014

From James Paterson

New Institute of Public Affairs research released today busts the myth that Australia is a low taxing country. Analysis by the IPA’s Dr Mikayla Novak, reported in The Australian this morning ($), shows that including compulsory superannuation and health insurance mandates with federal, state and local taxes puts Australia just under the OECD average tax burden. It’s even worse when compared with our neighbours and major trading partners:

You can download the full report here.

Raising Australia’s already high taxes is not the answer to our budget crisis – especially when there are so many areas of government spending that should be cut, as Family First Senator Bob Day and Liberal Democrat Senator David Leyonhjelm explained in speeches to the Senate last week.

Last week we told you about the Labor and National Party Senators who love Bitcoin. This week you can read Mikayla Novak’s submission to their Senate inquiry, which urges the government not to stifle this exciting innovation.

The Victorian Coalition government lost office on Saturday after just four years in power. On The Bolt Report on Sunday, IPA executive director explained who was to blame (hint: not Tony Abbott):

Writing in The Age on Tuesday, I argued that the government’s policies strayed too far from Liberal values. Also on Tuesday, the IPA’s Simon Breheny argued in The Australian Financial Review that Victoria’s failure to enact economic reform will hold it back for years. And in The Drum, Chris Berg said Victoria’s fixed four year terms are a proven failure.

This is a fascinating essay from the December edition of Standpoint, on why the time is right for Boris Johnson to become leader of the Conservative Party. And I know you will love James Delingpole’s take on ABC cuts, published in Breitbart on Saturday.

Now’s your last chance to secure your ticket to hear David Leyonhjelm, Tim Wilson, Chris Berg and Simon Breheny discuss ‘Liberty in the Digital Age’ in Sydney next Thursday 11 December. Book here.

The IPA is now gratefully accepting donations to our 2014 Annual Giving Appeal. Click here to make your tax-deductible donation to ensure the IPA remains a loud voice for freedom in Australia.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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Flags, white vans and dodgy shirts

November 27, 2014

From Peter Gregory

How do you know you’ve arrived as a social phenomenon? When you get more boos than Rupert Murdoch at a Save the ABC rally. That’s what happened to the IPA in Sydney last Saturday. And that’s even before James Paterson’s article about the ABC in the AFR yesterday.

Christine Milne also chimed in with this tweet saying the IPA runs the government. Her time would be better spent reading this excellent piece in The Times from IPA guest Matt Ridley explaining that Greens’ policies harm the world’s poorest people.

Who knew that flags and white vans could cause so much trouble? 

Click here to find out why this tweeted image cost British Shadow Attorney-General Emily Thornberry her job and made Labour leader Ed Miliband really, really mad. Boris Johnston wrote in The Telegraph on Monday that Miliband should get a ‘Darwin Award‘.

Boris has been busy recently. This week it was flags and white vans. Last week it was dodgy shirts.

This is terrible – a proposal to make speakers at British universities apply to the Home Secretary for a permit to give speeches to students (a permit for politicians to tweet images of white vans I could understand). But as Brendan O’Neill explains in The Spectator, there is a new breed of student that doesn’t want free speech – the Stepford student.

What do the NSW Labor Right and the Queensland Liberal National Party have in common? If you answered ‘Bitcoins’ I’m impressed. This is an interesting piece in yesterday’s Guardian by ALP Senator Sam Dastyari and Liberal National Senator Matthew Canavan about the benefits of competition in currency markets brought about by Bitcoins.

American economist Gary Becker died in May this year. This 3,427 word piece in the current edition of City Journal explains how his influence will grow after his death.

And IPA guest Dan Hannan pondered IPA guest Roger Scruton’s achievements and what it means to be conservative in The Telegraph on Monday.

The Menzies Research Centre is launching the inaugural essay in the RG Menzies Essays series, ‘Quiet Achievers: The New Zealand Path to Reform’ in early December. Here are the details for Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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Cuts to ABC, not to China’s emissions

November 20, 2014

From James Paterson

You’ve probably heard about the ‘gigantic’ and ‘extraordinary’ deal Barack Obama secured with China to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Except there’s just one problem. Only one country has actually promised to reduce emissions:

(Via the IPA’s professor Sinclair Davidson at the excellent Catallaxy Files blog.)

If you’re looking for analysis of the cuts to the ABC and SBS budgets, we’ve got you covered. In The Courier Mail on Wednesday the IPA’s Simon Breheny said the 5% cut is a good start. On ABC Radio National last night I said ultimately both the ABC and SBS should be privatised. And this morning on The Conversation IPA Adjunct Fellow and RMIT professor Jason Potts explained why economic theory proves taxpayers will be better off thanks to the reduced funding.

In America this week everyone’s been talking about the latest scandal to afflict Obamacare: Grubergate. Never heard of it? This is a great rundown from John Fund at the National Review on Monday, and this video compilation chronicles Democrats’ embarrassing efforts to distance themselves from it. In The Washington Post last week Charles Krauthammer outlined what it means for Obama’s presidency.

Billionaire libertarian Peter Thiel has an important new book Zero to One: Notes on Startups, Or How to Build the Future. Watch Thiel discuss the book, and his views on climate change, in this interview with Glenn Beck. And read this fascinating review in Forbes last week on what we can learn from Thiel about economics and why the higher education system is so broken.

Next June is the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo. In the November edition of Standpoint, historian Andrew Roberts reviews two of the best new books examining the battle and its aftermath. Roberts was the keynote speaker at the IPA’s 2011 Foundations of Western Civilisation Symposium – watch his address on the legacy of the English-speaking peoples.

IPA member Peter Fenwick’s new book, published by Connor Court, The Fragility of Freedom: Why Subsidiarity Matters, will be launched in Melbourne on Monday 1 December by former federal health minister Jim Carlton. More details about the book and the launch are available here.

There are still some places available for the IPA’s Sydney event, ‘Liberty in the Digital Age’, on Thursday 11 December with LDP Senator David Leyonhjelm and Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson. Click here to secure your place.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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Institute of Public Affairs | Level 2 | 410 Collins Street | Melbourne | Victoria | 3000 | Australia

 

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