Energy and Environment
Another day, another brilliant wheeze for nudging the country towards ‘net zero’, the Canute-like plan of the British political establishment to direct the global atmosphere to do their bidding by controlling the choices of 0.9% of the world’s population. This time there will be a national plan for sockets. The insufficiently switched-on British masses are ... Continue reading
MPs will vote today on the Health and Care Bill. This legislation has much to commend it to Conservative MPs. It is not yet another top-down reorganisation of the health service. Indeed, it is not a reorganisation of the NHS at all. Instead, it is designed to integrate the NHS, social care and local authorities ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
In 2010, the new Prime Minister David Cameron, long before his own ill-judged engagement with Greensill Capital, warned that lobbying was “the next big scandal waiting to happen”. The focus of his concern, after a decade of minor scandals mostly involving Labour Ministers, were the lobbyists themselves and their access to Ministers. The reforms that ... Continue reading
Society and Culture
The intellectual comeback of socialism After every single socialist experiment without exception failed over the past 100 years, it should be clear that the last thing the world needs are any new ones. But as memories of the collapse of real-world socialism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe recede, socialist thought is experiencing a ... Continue reading
The Northern Powerhouse Rail (NPR) project, previously known as HS3, was first promised by the Coalition Government in 2014 as an extension to HS2. It was originally intended to be a phased set of links between London, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds, due for delivery between 2029-2033 (and delayed from 2026 for the first phase). NPR ... Continue reading
Energy and Environment
Last week, The Scotsman published an article by the journalist Anastasiia Zagoruichyk. In the piece, Zagoruichyk claims that thanks to climate change, fires, and deforestation in her native Ukraine, her children won’t get to experience childhood joys like “walking in the autumn forest, picking mushrooms and breathing fresh air.” Forest coverage in Ukraine is, admittedly, a niche ... Continue reading
Richard Wellings, who leaves us on 15 November with our very best wishes, has been with the IEA for 15 years. He was initially Deputy Editorial Director and later Deputy Research Director, and twice Acting Research Director. He was also, for many years, editor of this blog. By the time of my arrival he was ... Continue reading
The NHS is being privatised. Everybody knows that. Or at least, every Twitter user does, because Twitter regularly talks itself into a frenzy over the threat of NHS “privatisation”. For example, Jon Trickett, the MP for Hemsworth, tweeted the other day: “There are 22,143 fewer NHS Beds today than there were in 2010 […]  This ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
As recently as 1981, 88 percent of the Chinese population was living in extreme poverty; today it is less than one percent. How was this possible? Never in the history of the world have so many hundreds of millions of people risen from abject poverty to the middle class in such a short time. China’s ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
In The Common Sense of Science, the Polish-British mathematician Jacob Bronowski wrote that, “at the basis of human thought lies the judgment of what is like and what is unlike.” Unfortunately, public policies often mistakenly treat people that are unlike in crucial ways as if they are alike, or those who are alike in crucial ... Continue reading