What is a ‘benchmark average auction charge?’

July 29, 2011

From John Roskam | Thursday, 28 July 2011

What does it take for a government to create a ‘green industrial revolution‘? 718 pages of legislation and 454 pages of explanation, apparently (with many more pages to come, no doubt). That’s what’s in the carbon tax legislation released this afternoon in Canberra.

We’ll all have to get used to things like:

Am I the only person that finds it ironic Australia has a ‘Minister for Deregulation‘?

Depressed? This will either depress you more or make you laugh (or both). It’s 9 reasons why in 1963 Australia couldn’t appoint as woman as a trade commissioner. It follows from this advertisement in Hey last week seeking women to move to Canberra.

Even Michael Barone in The Age today acknowledges President Obama’s budget is designed to make the US more like Europe. And if you’re that worried about the US debt, make a donation.

The 55,000 Australians who identified their religion as ‘Jedi’ in the last census have been warned!  This year’s census won’t count Jedi as a religion.

Miranda Devine in today’s Daily Telegraph has this coverage about the speech of President Klaus in Sydney on Monday night. And here is his speech at the National Press Club in Canberra on Tuesday.  His speech in Melbourne tonight is booked out but there are still spots left for his lunchtime address in Brisbane on Monday – book here.

And if you’re in Sydney on August 1, the CIS is presenting their Big Ideas Forum 2011 at the Grand Lodge, Sydney Masonic Centre. This year’s theme is political correctness. Thilo Sarrazin, Janet Albrechtsen, James Allan (James had this great piece in The Australian today) and Brendan O’Neill are the speakers. For more information and bookings click here.  

And the IPA’s Chris Berg will be in Sydney for the Intelligence Squared Australia debate on 16 August discussing the topic ‘Do we need a Nanny State?’ Click here to book your place. And there are still tickets available for the Spectator Australia climate change debate with Lord Nigel Lawson – more details here

Here’s more of what the IPA said this week:

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The carboncrats are already here

July 21, 2011

As the IPA’s Tim Wilson said in The Australian on Saturday, it’s a great time to be a public servant.

The IPA has calculated the green bureaucrats employed by state governments:

This recruitment pamphlet for the Canberra public service from 1973 will make you laugh.

Apparently 60% of economists support the carbon tax. Is that like the 364 economists who attacked Margaret Thatcher in 1981? I explained it all in my column last Friday in the Australian Financial Review.

Why do the people who want the carbon tax the most know the least about it? Here’s how much Green supporters know.

No sooner did we tell you about Hugh Grant’s dreams of regulating the media last week, then our very own Bob Brown has called for it too. This piece from Tim Blair about it is hilarious. Brendan O’Neill also had a great response to the ‘Murdochphobia’ that has consumed the media and many politicians.

Remember when Chris Berg told you in 2007 how local councils were making it impossible to host a street party? Well, even I was surprised to learn how bad things have gotten in the US state of Georgia – three teenage girls had their lemonade stand shut down last week – by the police!

President Vaclav Klaus arrives in Australia tomorrow, and he was featured in The Australian this morning. His Perth address is already booked out but you can still book for functions in Sydney on 25 July, Canberra on 26 July, Melbourne on 28 July and Brisbane on 1 August. If you’re in Sydney – the Centre for Independent Studies is hosting a lunch with Paul Wolfowitz on 2 August.

And the IPA is excited to be sponsoring the Spectator Australia climate change debate between Lord Nigel Lawson, Ian Plimer and Gary Johns, against John Hewson, Mark Latham and Benjamin McNeil– details here. If you haven’t seen it already, here is Christopher Monckton debating Richard Denniss from the Australia Institute at the National Press Club on Tuesday.

Here’s more of what the IPA said this week:

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Hugh Grant wouldn’t regulate ‘Hey’…would he?

July 14, 2011

From John Roskam | Thursday, 14 July 2011

In the wake of the News of the World scandal Hugh Grant had this amazing rant on the BBC’s Question Time program last Thursday about how ‘tabloids’ should be regulated by the government but ‘the broadsheet press’ should not be.

He’s got a thing against the tabloids (no wonder). Here he is complaining about them in The New Statesman in April – yes – The New Statesman.

There’s a reason the left want regulation of the tabloids – as Tim Montgomerie explained in ConservativeHome and Brendan O’Neill did in Monday’s The Australian.

And here’s a gem from what Hugh Grant calls ‘the proper press’. It’s from Monday’s Guardian. The Euro is actually a right-wing plot!

And if you’re not sick of the UK yet – read this very funny review in The Spectator of a new biography of Labour leader Ed Miliband.

Where to begin on the carbon tax? Well, Australia is going to get five new bureaucracies. No surprise politicians are already fighting to get those bureaucrats to their electorate!

On Tuesday IPA members and supporters (join today!) were sent these quick takes by the IPA’s Tim Wilson and Alan Moran, and this video of Tim debating GetUp! on Sky News on Sunday morning. Here’s Julie Novak in The Australian, Alan Moran in The Drum and Online Opinion, Tim Wilson in The Australian and Professor Sinclair Davidson on The Drum. We sent this press release out on Sunday.

Only in Sweden…a heavy metal fan is now receiving government sick benefits for “heavy metal addiction” – and the government is forcing his employer to allow him to play loud music at work.

The highlights of the IPA’s Freedom of Speech in Australia event with Andrew Bolt are now online here. (IPA members will be getting a DVD with the full evening shortly.)

Next week I’m in Mount Isa on Tuesday July 19 and Cloncurry on Wednesday July 20 for the IPA’s Carbon Tax Information sessions – details here. And book to see President Vaclav Klaus in Perth on Friday July 22, Sydney on Monday July 25, Canberra on Tuesday July 26, Melbourne on Thursday July 28 and Brisbane on Monday August 1.

Connor Court Publishing’s new book The Greens: Policies, Reality and Consequences, with contributions by the IPA’s Sinclair Davidson, Alan Moran, and Ken Phillips is launched in Melbourne on Thursday July 21 – bookings here.

And the Centre for Independent Studies is bringing Paul Wolfowitz to Sydney Tuesday August 2, go here for bookings. The CIS is also hosting prominent Zimbabwean politician, human rights lawyer and pro-democracy activist David Coltart for the annual Acton Lecture in Sydney on July 26 – bookings here.

Here’s more of what the IPA said this week:

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The People’s Republic of the World

July 7, 2011

Bob Brown’s global ‘people’s assembly‘ continues to intrigue me. There’s soon to be 7 billion people in the world.

Brown says it should be ‘one person, one vote, one value’. So if 10 million people each got a representative in a 700 member world parliament the votes would look like this:

On Monday night on the ABC TV’s The Drum I asked the new Greens senator for Victoria whether Brown was serious – apparently so.

President Obama’s ‘stimulus package’ cost $278,000 for each job added or saved in the wake of the GFC. This week’s Weekly Standard explains.

And you saw how the President blamed ATM’s for unemployment? Here’s the video. ATMs have put bank tellers out of a job, just as calculators destroyed the abacus-making sector. Here’s what The Economist said and here’s what The Wall Street Journal said about it.

The video of the IPA’s Genius of Western Civilisation symposium will be up on the web soon. I’ve been asked by lots of people about the details of the books that were talked about at the symposium – here’s three of them:

We have some great events coming up. Tickets are available for the Vaclav Klaus tour in Brisbane, Perth, Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne between 22 July and 1 August. And the IPA is delighted to sponsor the Spectator Australia debate between Lord Nigel Lawson, Ian Pilmer and Gary Johns, against John Hewson, Mark Latham and Benjamin McNeil on climate change – details here. And the IPA’s Chris Berg will be speaking at the IQ2 debate in Sydney on the Nanny State in August.

Here’s more of what the IPA said this week:

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