The life of an Italian, New Zealand and Australian public servant

July 31, 2014

From Peter Gregory

Do you lie awake at night worrying about how Australia’s top public servants are scraping by?

Well don’t! This graph demonstrates just how well Australia’s top public servants do compared to their OECD counterparts (and there are more amazing graphs here):


In June, the IPA’s Sinclair Davidson revealed on The Catallaxy Files that the CEO of cutting edge communications company Australia Post earns almost $5 million a year. And remember when the RBA governor had his pay increased to over a million dollars during the GFC?  

This might be the weirdest paragraph in Hey ever. Watch the IPA’s Chris Berg on The Drum last night (skip to 3:53) talk about the suppression order no-one is allowed to talk about (including people who write Hey). And here’s a carefully-worded report in The Sydney Morning Herald from yesterday about the scandal. If you ever doubted that Australia has a problem with freedom of speech – this is proof that it does.

Liberal Democrat senator David Leyonhjelm wants young jobseekers to be able to negotiate their own contracts (like the top public servants) under the award. In March the IPA’s Aaron Lane and Dr Julie Novak submitted this important report to the Fair Work Commission arguing that the minimum wage causes unemployment for low income earners and should be abolished.

And Julie has also been busy this week battling iconic American rapper Coolio over the ACT’s infrastructure priorities. Really. Here’s Coolio last week on the matter. Here’s Julie’s response in The Canberra Times on Monday.

This is James Paterson in New York telling Mary Kissel and The Wall Street Journal about how Australia ditchedthe carbon tax:

And on Friday former IPA guest Matt Ridley had this fascinating article in the WSJ about Bjørn Lomborg’s (another former IPA guest) quest for smarter foreign aid. 

A fortnight ago in Hey I told you about the awful case of a woman in America being jailed for letting her child go to the park. Sadly, Reason reports it’s happened again – this week a Florida mother was arrested for letting her seven-year-old son go to a park half a mile away by himself.

For those of you unable to attend the IPA’s launch of Ian Plimer’s new book Not for Greens last week, here is the video of Ian’s terrific address. And if you’re in Sydney on August 6 get along to the Quadrant Dinner with Roger Kimball.

The IPA is privileged to host Robert Bryce to deliver the 2014 HV McKay Lecture on Tuesday September 9 in Melbourne. Robert is a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research in New York and in May published a remarkable new book called Smaller Faster Lighter Denser Cheaper. You can read a review of it in The Boston Globe here. Terry McCrann will be giving the vote of thanks. Click here to book.

Here’s what else the IPA said this week:

 

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Revenge of the Green Blob (and Mr Men)

July 24, 2014

From John Roskam

Today’s Hey is coming to you from someone who last week in parliament was called a ‘climate criminal‘! (I bet you can’t guess who called me that – well – I think you can actually. They’re a special friend of the IPA and a Hey regular!)

Economic growth is egalitarian! And global income inequality is falling as Professor Tyler Cowen said in The New York Times on the weekend.

This from the World Bank shows what’s happened in the 20 years between the fall of the Berlin Wall and the GFC. The first graph is how much the income of people in each income group has increased. The second graph reveals how much still remains to be done.

(In case you’re wondering – an annual income of US $34,000 gets you into the richest 1% of the world.)

Because there’s so much material for it we’re thinking of introducing a new section in Hey called ‘What left-wing academics say about the IPA in The Guardian‘. This week’s entry is from Warwick Smith at the University of Melbourne who accuses the IPA of having ‘ideological motives’! Really? You think?

Michael Gove, the British education minister who criticised the way Mr Men books were used to teach the Second World War was sacked in a Cabinet reshuffle last week.

Gove also wanted children to learn Shakespeare. This from Standpoint on Monday explains why Gove was Britain’s best ever education minister.

The environment minister who took on ‘The Green Blob’ was also sacked. He wrote a brilliant dummy-spit after his sacking about ‘anti-capitalist agitprop groups’ who want to take us back to the ‘Stone Age’. Not surprisingly the Green Blob is upset!

Last week confirms what I wrote about British PM David Cameron last year in my column in The Australian Financial Review. He’s pretty hopeless.

Last month is the 10th anniversary of Fahrenheit 9/11. Mark Steyn teams up with Jean-Luc Godard to explain that Mike Moore is good at making propaganda not movies.

Meanwhile this Iraq war veteran is told he’s not allowed to keep 14 ducks.

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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Parks and naughty corners – not safe for children

July 17, 2014

From Peter Gregory

Greens leader Christine Milne finally cares about Tasmanian jobs! Last week, she was worried that scrapping the carbon tax would cost jobs…at Hydro Tasmania. It’s just as well she’s come around, given this remarkable chart:

If you think the Tasmanian and South Australian governments’ handling of the economy is bad, take a look at the Singaporean government’s hilarious attempt to deal with problem gambling:

This is a terrible story from Reason of a mother in the US being jailed this month for letting her nine-year-old child go to the park by herself. And here is our FreedomWatch post on the academics who think sending children to the naughty corner is an abuse of their human rights.

The bizarre operation to remove smoking from the historical record of World War Two continues. In March we showed you these photos of Winston Churchill with and without his trademark cigar. Now, American viewers of George Clooney’s new movie The Monuments Men, set during World War Two, are being warned it contains ‘historical smoking’ (FreedomWatch post here).

Still in the states, read this amazing story from Mark Steyn on Monday about an Independence Day float, the Department of Justice and an outhouse.

But it’s not all bad news from America – Reason released a report last week showing that increasing numbers of millennials think government is wasteful and inefficient.

And here’s something else that will cheer you up! After a 10 year legal battle, Amazon has gotten around France’s law against companies offering free shipping of books – by charging 0.01 euros per shipment.

If you’re in Melbourne on 8 and 9 October then you should go and see the IPA’s executive director John Roskam speak at the Council of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences National Forum. Details here.

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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Bill Gates is rich for a reason

July 10, 2014

From James Paterson

While we wait for the Senate to get around to repealing the carbon tax, here’s three things from our elected representatives this week that you’ll love:

1. LDP Senator (and IPA member) David Leyonhjelm’s brilliant maiden speech, delivered in the Senate last night:

2. This entertaining speech, delivered by Queensland MP George Christensen in Las Vegas this week at the Heartland Institute’s 9th International Conference on Climate Change. Christensen laments climate alarmism has become like science fiction – and not the good Star Trek of old kind.

3. Motoring Enthusiasts Party Senator Ricky Muir’s step-by-step guide on how to make the best home-made beer-battered onion rings (who said the Motoring Enthusiasts were a one-issue party?):

In his Australian Financial Review column on Friday, IPA executive director John Roskam said Ricky Muir doesn’t deserve the disdain he’s received from the political class in Canberra. And on The Drum on Tuesday Chris Berg said it isn’t such a bad thing this new Senate resembles ordinary Australians more closely than the last one.

It’s no wonder Bill Gates is one of the world’s richest men. He’s worked out that cheap energy is good for poor people. Who’d have thunk it? It’s like the time Bono worked out capitalism was good for getting rid of poverty.

This is a remarkable speech by Anthony Daniels, who writes as Theodore Dalrymple for The Spectator, delivered at Hillsdale College in May on the decline of England.

This week’s crazy Conversation article really takes the cake. Apparently CCTV surveillance is all the fault of…wait for it…Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman.

The IPA has just published the latest book in our Foundations of Western Civilisation monograph series. Richard Allsop’s Liberalism: A Short History was sent to IPA premier members last week, and is now available for purchase. You can read more about this important new book, and order it online, here.

Former IPA research fellow Asher Judah’s new book from Connor Court, The Australian Century, will be launched in Melbourne on Wednesday July 30th. And don’t forget to RSVP for the IPA’s launches of Ian Plimer’s latest book, Not For Greens, in Melbourne on Tuesday 22nd July and in Brisbane on Monday 28 July.

And finally, it must be opposites day over at the Human Rights Commission – they’re holding a conference on free speech! And they’ve even invited Chris Berg to speak. Full details here.

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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