Economic Theory
The 2020s will see the introduction of one of the most profoundly transformative technologies for decades: the driverless car. In the world we have inhabited for the past 60 years, most adults own cars that they drive daily, which they then park in their garages, front yards or on the street, or in car parks ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
The analysis of international incidents such as the current US-Iranian standoff is often done by (academic) specialists, commentators, or more recently journalists interviewing other journalists. They all have their underlying premises and theoretical underpinnings in making predictions of the likely next moves by regional and global players.  This begs the question: is there a particular ... Continue reading
Society and Culture
The BBC headline announced the sad news as “Roger Scruton: Conservative thinker dies at 75”.  Many who have heard him speak or read his works will feel that to describe Roger Scruton as merely a “conservative thinker” is to understate his influence on thinkers of the conservative and other philosophical and political traditions. He wrote ... Continue reading
The British public should be wary of the recent fad of lavish infrastructure spending as often they are little more than political enticements with flimsy economic foundations. Throughout the 2019 election, parties across the political spectrum have announced ambitious spending programs in a bid to garner support, especially in regions hurt by austerity. Infrastructure has ... Continue reading
Energy and Environment
The argument made by many such as George Monbiot that the protection of the environment requires the destruction of capitalism has no credibility given the relative success of socialist and market economies when it comes to the protection of environmental resources. However, even on a less dramatic level, it is remarkable how poorly designed government ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
Much has been written already on Number 10 adviser Dominic Cummings’ New Year appeal to “assorted weirdos” to smash up, then rebuild government to make it better. Cato economist Ryan Bourne challenges it from a public choice perspective, left-leaning professor Jonathan Portes on whether he has picked the right targets in civil servants rather than ... Continue reading
One of the larger benefits those of a liberal economics bent often ascribe to trade deals is that they provide an excuse for stripping away dumb domestic laws. A classic scenario is something like the following. At some point decades ago a government found it convenient to ally itself with either producers in some sector ... Continue reading
Society and Culture
2020 marks the 65th anniversary of the founding of the Institute of Economic Affairs, often referred to as the grandfather or mothership of free market and classical liberal think tanks. Classical liberalism has no party-political home, but traces of it can be found in all major parties, so over the years, we have employed staff ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
Dominic Cummings is a funny chap. I admire his iconoclasm, if not his dress sense. The ‘Kevin-the sulky-teenager’ schtick – has anyone ever seen him smile? – amuses. But is he going about his attempts at reforming Whitehall in the right way? Indeed is that what the government should be doing just now? The notorious ... Continue reading
The mission of Network for a Free Society is to encourage opportunity and prosperity by promoting understanding of the principles of a free and responsible society, and the foundations on which it is based: limited government, the rule of law, protection of private property, free markets, and free speech. The organisation is extremely active in ... Continue reading