Economic Theory
Venezuelamania is well and truly over. Like so many other examples before it, the country has entered the unthankful not-REAL-socialism stage. And yet, Britain’s remaining Chavistas, such as Chris Williamson, Ken Livingstone and George Galloway, are doubling down. They have convinced themselves that Venezuela’s crisis has nothing to do with socialism, and everything to do ... Continue reading

Professor Philip Booth writes for CapX

Philip Booth, Senior Academic Fellow at the Institute of Economic Affairs,  has written an article for CapX on the moral case for free markets. Good policy depends on a well-informed population. The contribution of business to the formation of the intellectual climate is important. Businesses have a social responsibility to ensure that they do not ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
In 1992, the economist Gary Becker received the Nobel Prize for extending economic analysis to spheres of human behaviour previously considered the sole domain of sociologists and psychologists. These included topics as diverse as education, racial discrimination, medicine, drug addiction and even traffic flows. Becker’s ‘people-centric’ approach has been hugely influential. According to his protege ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
I can only assume that Netflix is bidding for rights to Brexit: The Saga. You might as well download the past 48 hours’ worth of news coverage, upload to the streaming site, and advertise it as how Breaking Bad would have unfolded if set in Westminster instead of New Mexico. The news is pure entertainment. Arguably, that’s ... Continue reading
Economic Theory

Shanker Singham features on NPR

Shanker Singham, Director of the International Trade and Competition Unit at the Institute of Economic Affairs, featured in an article by NPR on foreign interest in the midterm elections. Shanker said; "There may be a narrow window here where actually — contrary to sort of received wisdom — a strong Trump administration is actually very much in ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
…continued from Part 1 My IEA paper “The Mirage of Democratic Socialism: An Alternative History” describes a hypothetical socialist state, which tries, and fails, to reinvent itself. It starts with bold reform measures, but in the end, it ends up once again pretty much where it started. Some of my socialist detractors on social media ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
Two out of five people under the age of 35 have a positive opinion of socialism. Two out of five (presumably largely the same people) also agree with the statement that “communism could have worked if it had been better executed”. My IEA paper ‘The Mirage of Democratic Socialism: An Alternative History’, published about two ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
Continued from part 1 (here).  In 1789 France was a rural country with 55% of the population dependent directly or indirectly on agriculture. That industry, however, was backward in both tools and techniques – much of it was stuck in routines. Unlike many other countries in Europe, for example, France was slow to adopt the ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
The ‘success’ of the French Revolution has typically divided historians. Yet when invited to comment on the bicentenary of the French Revolution, Margaret Thatcher had no such qualms: “Human rights didn’t begin in 1789”, she remarked, recalling that these had already been part of the English Constitution for a century when the French Revolution broke ... Continue reading
Economic Theory
Across the political spectrum, support is growing for the idea of a Universal Basic Income (UBI) - broadly defined as an unconditional payment from the state to its citizens, regardless of their wealth, employment or marital status. Yet UBI ‘divides the crowd’, often triggering strong and visceral reactions. For many, government funding to stimulate entrepreneurship ... Continue reading