Steyn on freedom

February 25, 2016

From Peter Gregory

Mark Steyn has left the country. If you missed him, enjoy the next 4:05 – the finale to Mark’s speech in Melbourne last Friday:

Mark joined IPA Adjunct Fellow Tom Switzer on Between the Lines on Radio National last Thursday and Alan Jones on Tuesday.  

Today the IPA released Professor Sinclair Davidson’s new report ‘What politicians need to know about negative gearing‘. Here’s the answer – DON’T TOUCH IT!

Here’s what Sinclair’s research found:

Coverage of the report in today’s Australian is here ($).

Boris Johnson announced on the weekend he wants Britain to escape the “legal colonisation” of the EU – read his piece in The Telegraph here. He was joined in his support for Britain leaving the EU by UK Justice Secretary Michael Gove.

American college freshmen are more willing to shut down free speech they find offensive than at any time in the last 50 years. That’s the key finding of this survey from the Higher Education Research Institute. What’s more, Reason argues that PC indoctrination on college campuses is actually fuelling the rise of Donald Trump. 

But not all young people are authoritarian or Trump supporters (or both) – this young person writes in the British Spectator about being a former “stony-eyed” campus activist.

The Economist has finally gone the full Bernie! In this week’s edition they called for helicopter drop monetary policy and 70s style incomes policy. Hey readers will know this has been a long time coming from The Economist. Remember when they endorsed Kevin Rudd for the 2013 election or when they said Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century was one of the books to read in 2014?

The IPA’s Jennifer Marohasy predicts rainfall more accurately than the BoM. That must be true because the BoM told her as much in 2011. To find out what that means, head to Deniliquin RSL tomorrow night at 6pm. If you can’t make it to Denny, check out Jennifer’s website and a summary on Jo Nova’s blog.   

City Journal’s latest edition featured this thought-provoking and wide-ranging 4000 word long piece from Editor-at-Large Myron Magnet about how liberty requires eternal vigilance.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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What did Mark Steyn expect?

February 18, 2016

From James Bolt

When Mark Steyn heard that the Q&A audience was only 13% Greens, he probably wasn’t expecting such a reaction to him suggesting Bernie Sanders might become President.

You can watch the full episode here, and read Mark’s blog about Q&A here. This is what Mark had to say about Australia’s anti-free speech laws:

If you want to see Mark on his Australian tour, all of his events have now sold out! But you can catch Mark tonight at 7:30 on IPA Adjunct Fellow Tom Switzer’s Between The Lines on ABC Radio National, or download the episode afterwards here.

One of the world’s leading authorities on making bad decisions has finally advised Britain on whether it should stay or leave the EU, and – true to form – Wayne Swan thinks Britain should stay.

If, like me, you’re still scratching your head trying to figure out why Trump remains so popular, you have to read this insightful 2,500 word article from Charles Murray in The Wall Street Journal on Saturday. At least there’s good news for Rubio this week.

The United States lost a legal giant on Saturday with the passing of Supreme Court Justice (and former IPA speaker) Antonin Scalia. Cato published this tribute to him and his tireless defence of the right to privacy. The Washington Post listed his 10 funniest and most scathing quotes, and the most moving tribute came from one of Scalia’s ideological adversaries, fellow Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Zero tolerance policies are making schools in America lose their minds. We’ve told you about kids suspended for building a clock or having a staring contest. This week, two students are facing suspension from school when the fishing gear they kept in their car was discovered.

A charity in Germany where people leave food in fridges for the homeless is about to be shut down because Nanny State authorities are concerned people aren’t packaging the food correctly. I’m sure the homeless are thankful for the intervention. In 2006, former IPA fellow Louise Staley discovered how hard it was for the Red Cross to make lunches for firefighters thanks to the Nanny State.

Many economic commentators are panicking over the falling price of oil. The great Matt Ridley wrote this excellent article in The Times on Sunday arguing this is good news for the world’s poor. As Ridley says, “the fall in the oil price since 2014 has transferred $2 trillion from oil producers to oil consumers.”

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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What do Susan Sarandon, Donald Trump and the IPCC have in common?

February 11, 2016

From Morgan Begg

Raising the GST by 50% won’t fix this graph:

That’s why the IPA’s John Roskam, Chris Berg, Dr Mikayla Novak and Professor Sinclair Davidson said a GST rise would be a terrible idea. As John said in this piece four years ago about the Prime Minister three before the current one, “The last thing the country needs at the moment is the Prime Minister with her hands on more money”. If you don’t believe us, read the definitive argument why we should cut spending rather than increase taxes – from Peter Costello in January.

$1.3bn is a lot of money. It’s how much the Commonwealth government spent on interest on Australia’s gross debt in December aloneThe $15bn of interest we’ll be paying this year compares to:

In another blow to freedom of speech in Australia, it’s been reported that Mike Baird’s office has started deleting some of the 10,300 Facebook comments criticising Sydney’s ridiculous lockout laws. It was all sparked by this 8000 word piece written by Freelancer CEO Matt Barrie which has received 945,964 views. In 2008, the IPA identified that these same Nanny State policies were killing live music in Australia.

If you know any warmist-Trump supporters (if such a person exists) show them:

Trump sounds like just the sort of person who should win the Nobel Peace Prize. Lucky he’s been nominated for this year’s award! Other nominees include Susan Sarandon and Pope Francis – so he’s in good company. (What would Obama and the IPCC say if Trump won it?)

Today The Wall Street Journal had this terrific piece ($) proposing an alternate Black History Month. And if you think what happens on American college campuses has no repercussions for Australia, read this – a student at Brunswick Secondary College in Melbourne has accused her school of “whitewashing black history” for putting on the musical Hairspray.

This is hilarious – Seinfeld co-creator Larry David’s brilliant portrayal of Bernie Sanders on Saturday Night Live this week. If you like that, here’s another one from October last year. And while you’re at it, watch Sanders and Bill Maher discuss what socialism in America even means.

The best thing about the Super Bowl is the ads. My favourite was this oneThe Washington Post lists the 10 best commercials here. And Cato’s Dan Mitchell explains the connection between this year’s Super Bowl and the tax policies which basically make California “the France of America“.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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John Cleese now says you can mention the war

February 4, 2016

From Peter Gregory | Thursday, 4 February 2016

The IPA stands with ABC presenter Jonathan Green. He doesn’t want to see “big name government moving into journalism“. The ship might’ve sailed on that one Jonathan. In Hey in April 2014, James Paterson shared this graph of the make-up of the federal parliamentary press gallery:


Last week, the Bank of Japan imposed negative interest rates. Find out what that means here. (It’s not surprising that the best analysis of wealth-destroying economic policy is found in The Guardian!)

John Cleese has joined the list of comedians (including Jerry Seinfeld and Chris Rock) to criticise authoritarian political correctness on university campuses. Last week spiked featured the brave students fighting campus censorship in the UK.  

This piece in Bloomberg on Tuesday explains how Ted Cruz won Iowa (apart from Iowans obviously reading Hey last week). In part, according to the American Enterprise Institute this week, it was by defeating the powerful ethanol lobby.  

National Review on Tuesday asked whether Donald Trump is finished. Another piece in National Review, also on Tuesday, talks up the Marco Rubio comebackMeanwhile some of the Democrat caucuses were literally decided by the flip of a coin according to The Atlantic this week.   

Watch Tyler Cowen’s 1 hour 21 minute interview with former NBA star and conservative intellectual Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the Mercatus Center this week. It covers everything from the future of conservatism to why no-one these days can shoot a sky-hook. 

Here’s something that will cheer you up. A Dusseldorf court has ruled that the former head of German football is legally permitted to call Qatar a “cancerous growth of world football“.

If you haven’t purchased your ticket already to see Mark Steyn, who last week wrote the finest analysis of Men At Work’s Down Under I’ve ever come across, unfortunately you are too late. Mark’s Restoring Freedom Tour with the IPA is now sold out in all locations.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

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