Government and Institutions
Wales having control of its own judicial powers should not be an exception, but the norm. On 24 October, the Commission on Justice in Wales published its report outlining that Wales should be granted full control over its justice system, including over police, prisons and the appointing of its own judges. The proposals conclude that ... Continue reading
Society and Culture
You can’t escape it; capitalism has a bad rap. Last night, thousands of anti-capitalist protestors took to the streets in capital cities across the world. Wearing V for Vendetta-inspired Guy Fawkes masks (most of which are made in China), these self-styled “anti-establishment” demonstrators, who took part in annual Million Mask March, sought to express their ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
YES - says Ralph Buckle, Acting Director of Education, Outreach and Programmes, Institute of Economic Affairs. Taxation without representation Perhaps the strongest argument for lowering the voting age to 16 rests on the principle of “no taxation without representation”. If you are in employment at the age of 16, you are added to PAYE and ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
After a long delay of more than four decades, the Chilean people are finally rising up against neoliberalism. They demand an end to the economic legacy of the Chicago Boys, the US-trained liberal economists who occupied key economic policy positions during Pinochet’s dictatorship. The socialist project of Salvador Allende, the Marxist president who headed Chile’s ... Continue reading
Whenever a government campaign, NGO or well-meaning public figure endorses lifestyle changes that can benefit the environment, there is a predictable outcry from the usual suspects. “Don’t blame everyday folks!”, they cry. “Just 100 companies are responsible for over 71% of global emissions!” While on the surface this claim stands up to factual scrutiny, digging ... Continue reading
Last weekend I had a boneshaking ride on one of Northern Rail’s notorious Pacers. These trains, dating from the mid-1980s, were built cheaply in the last days of British Rail. They are essentially buses on rails, using a Leyland Motors bus body mounted on a modified freight vehicle. They are often fitted out with the ... Continue reading
Government and Institutions
What's happened? The EU Commission and UK have agreed a new Protocol for Ireland/Northern Ireland and a new Political Declaration in respect of the future relationship. It is expected that the Council will endorse it at the summit this week, and UK Parliament will vote on it on Saturday. The main body of the Withdrawal ... Continue reading
Extinction Rebellion (XR), the movement using direct action to seek to persuade the Government to adopt a headline 2025 net zero target to tackle climate change, has been banned from protest in London, after a week of law-breaking activities that have drained resources away from front-line policing. In practice this means XR protestors can be ... Continue reading
Energy and Environment
“I don’t want you to listen to me – I want you to listen to the scientists. I want you to then unite behind the science – and take action.” These were the words spoken by Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg to the US Congress last month. At face value, they are eminently reasonable. There ... Continue reading
Tax and Fiscal Policy
In an article in the Times earlier this week I suggested Sajid Javid take a bold approach to tax reform. I argued that we should strive for lower and simpler taxes. On its own, the former would probably make our tax system less progressive overall, while the latter would make it more progressive. Because the ... Continue reading