The 17 year old who’s crazier than Kevin Rudd

June 27, 2013

From James Paterson

As you might have heard Australia has a new prime minister. In case you forgot how bad he was, read Chris Berg’s forensic analysis of the Rudd Government from the March 2009 IPA Review, and Sinclair Davidson’s demolition of Rudd’s response to the GFC in the August 2010 edition.

This kid sounds like he’s been listening to Kevin Rudd too much. His real quote in this amazing New York Times story after he was denied becoming student president at his high school sounds eerily familiar:

“Students call me every night, asking me to keep fighting. They’ve compared this to China, Russia, Venezuela.”

Then again, maybe he’s right and America is becoming like a dictatorship – you can’t even rescue a bald eagle without jail time these days. And it’s now apparently compulsory to mow your front lawn in Chicago. But on the bright side the scourge of police describing suspects based on gender is about to end.

If you’re already looking forward to the new Superman movie, here’s another reason: it’s pro-freedom!

If you’re in Melbourne on Tuesday, 2 July at 6.30pm come to what will be a great event: Nick Minchin launching a new book by Professor Bob Carter and The Age cartoonist John Spooner, ‘Taxing Air: Facts and Fallacies About Climate Change’. Details here.

And on 24 July John Roskam will help Connor Court launch the new biography of former NSW Premier Nick Greiner in Melbourne – RSVP here.

There’s just a few days left till June 30 – so now’s the perfect time to make a tax-deductible donation to the IPA’s End of Financial Year Appeal.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

 

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Civil libertarian extremists

June 20, 2013

From John Roskam

If the Gillard government’s change to the constitution is just ‘housekeeping’ and ‘common sense’ and ‘moderate’ why does it need to spend 20 times as much money promoting the ‘Yes’ case as the ‘No’ case?

Because of the IPA! Literally. Here’s what the minister, Anthony Albanese said on ABC radio on Tuesday.

The government and the opposition are as bad as each other.

At least Albanese didn’t accuse the IPA of having a ‘one-eyed view of extreme civil liberties’ on government surveillance. He left that to his colleague Michael Danby MP.

This from me in The Australian Financial Review last Friday and this from Chris Berg in The Sunday Age is what gets Danby so upset.

Yep – we’re guilty – like all those other civil libertarian extremists who think the NSA revelations in America are a scandal – George Will in The Washington Post last Wednesday, Peggy Noonan in The Wall Street Journal on Friday, and of course Mark Steyn in the National Review Online also last Friday.

On the funny side this 2.47 minute music video from ReasonTV on the NSA is pretty good – and quite catchy too.

Here’s a fascinating 5,000 word piece on Rand Paul from this week’s New Republic. According to this great piece via Real Clear Politics Paul’s foreign policy is like Robb Stark’s in Game of Thrones. If you like GofT read the whole thing.

When government officials come out with things like ‘We want to prove that we are, in fact, smarter than the dinosaurs’ you’ve got to worry.

Maybe NASA could tell us who’d win a fight between a bear and a shark – the answer will shock you.

Helen Hughes, one of Australia’s great economists has died. This is a fitting tribute by the IPA’s Julie Novak on The Catallaxy Files.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

 

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The least untruthful Hey

June 13, 2013

From James Paterson

This week everyone’s talking about the US government’s massive surveillance programs. This is a great summary from Reason, and the WSJ explains who the key players are. Senator Rand Paul wrote the best critique of the Obama Administration. Here is our media release on why Australians should be worried. But this and thisare the funniest responses.

But really, what’s everyone complaining about? The White House gave “the least untruthful answer” to Congress. And it might have even helped Australia get a temporary seat on the UN Security Council!

Labor MP Andrew Leigh apparently wants to ban journalists making predictions and forecasts. Wayne Swan would be in big trouble if that applied to politicians. Actually, so would Andrew Leigh.

Normally we wouldn’t advocate Australia following Europe, but if Tony Abbott wanted to follow Greece’s lead and implement this sensible public policy measure, we wouldn’t complain. (The Greek government must’ve read Hey last week!)

Last week Hey readers loved this video with Mary Kissel on the threat to freedom posed by cyclists. If you didn’t agree with it you’ll probably enjoy this response from Jon Stewart on The Daily Show.

Nobel prize winning economist Robert Fogel passed away this week. This 2008 IPA Review article by Louise Staley explains some of his most important work.

The IPA is now fundraising for our End of Financial Year Appeal – and we’d be very grateful for your tax-deductible donation to help fund our research.

There are still places available at the HR Nicholls Society annual conference in Melbourne on 8 July. RSVP here to hear speakers including Paul Fletcher MP on the union-dominated superannuation industry.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

 

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We don’t condone heroics…or swapping footy cards

June 6, 2013

From John Roskam

Here’s proof the Eureka Stockade – the only anti-government riot in Australian history – failed.

It’s from the new research paper by the IPA’s Dr Julie Novak on how government has got so big.

There’s nothing like shielding school children from the realities of life. Which is why Southmoor Primary School in Melbourne has banned the trading of football cards. Apparently students are getting ‘distressed’. Instead students will do ‘games’. (Presumably those games won’t be competitive – just in case, you know, someone loses and gets ‘distressed’.)

Here’s another great school story. In Canada they don’t ‘condone heroics‘.

Talking of heroics…this has to be the best excuse ever for the police not charging someone – ‘We took into account that he saved the boy’s life’.

If you like Game of Thrones you’ll enjoy this 5.22 min video from Reason TV last week on the economics in the show.

If you hate cyclists you’ll enjoy this 4.59 min video from Mary Kissel on WSJ Live last week about the totalitarianism of bike-sharing schemes.

If you haven’t heard of the new Kevin Spacey TV political thriller House of Cards you soon will. This is the great 2.29 min trailer (it’s had 1.6 million hits). This is Graeme Blundell’s review of it in The Australian last month. Then watch the 6.29 min spoof video of it shown at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner back in April.

Looks like ABC Management got to B1 and B2 before I could. You’ll remember this advertisement last month from our friends at GetUp after this article (and its 617 comments!) in The Age where I talked about selling the ABC.

This morning we found out the ABC had pressed the blend button.

If you’re one of the IPA’s 3,346 members you would already have got your latest edition of the IPA Review in the mail. If you’re not a member you’re missing out on pieces like this great review by Richard Allsop of two new books on the history of the UK in the 1970s covering Thatcher, football hooliganism, and The Clash.

You’ve seen the IPA’s Factsheet on how bad the local government referendum is. Here’s the website on why Canberra shouldn’t run local councils – www.nopowergrab.com.au.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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