The debt is high but the beer is cheap!

September 27, 2012

From James Paterson

I thought we had problems with free speech in Australia. But just try accusing someone of having the “charisma of a damp rag” and the “appearance of a low-grade bank clerk” in the EU parliament and you’ll be in serious trouble. We wonder how long Winston Churchill would have lasted given these classic insults. (The Clement Atlee ones are my favourite).

Perhaps we should just be thankful the EU isn’t proposing a global ban on criticising religion, like the UN. The IPA’s Simon Breheny responded to this crazy idea yesterday on The Punch. It’s nice to see even Barack Obama agrees with the IPA. Well…mostly.

Last week we told you Australia outranked the United States in economic freedom. But on one important measure they’re way ahead – how much work it takes to buy a beer. Aussie Nanny Staters probably think that’s a great thing – but it isn’t if you’re worried about surviving a nuclear war.

The second instalment of the Atlas Shrugged movie trilogy is out in the US next month. You’ll love the trailer. And this interview with the producers explains why America needs to watch this movie. (If you think America’s doing fine, try this amazing debt-calculator. US Debt increased by $428,674,564 in the time it took us to write Hey).

Here’s some great long reads: this month’s New Yorker on the invention of political consulting and the October edition of Vanity Fair on how the $5 billion James Bond franchise was created. (The latest Bond, Skyfall, is out in Australia this November).

And finally for some good news. Hayekians are winning the ideological war in China says The Economist, India is embracing free market reform and a new private city in Honduras aims to be the “most economically free entity on Earth“.

If you’re in Melbourne next Thursday you might like to attend the launch of Kevin Andrews’ new book with special guest Andrew Bolt.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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