Deputy Director Sam Bowman spoke to BBC Radio Scotland about the benefits and consequences of the living wage and what could be done instead to put more money in the hands of low-paid workers. Listen to the full interview here. (Starts 1:40:30)
Deputy Director Sam Bowman's CityAM piece on John Whittingdale's appointment to Culture Secretary featured in The i:
The BBC was never meant to be the 5bn behemoth that it has grown into. It needs to be cut down to size, and the new Culture Secretary - John Whittingdale - might be the man to do it.
Deputy Director of the Adam Smith Institute Sam Bowman was quoted in The Metro arguing that the Government’s pledge to crackdown on hate preachers is both illiberal and a threat to free speech. From The Metro:
Extremism crackdown ‘threat to free speech’
David Cameron has announced a crackdown on extremism, with powers to tackle radicalisation. The measures include new rules on immigration, restricting people who seek to radicalise youngsters, and powers to close premises that harbour extremists.
Britain must confront ‘the poisonous Islamist extremist ideology’, said Mr Cameron.
His measures will be in a counter-extremism bill in the Queen’s Speech this month.
Opposition MPs and free-speech campaigners criticised the proposals, with Liberal Democrat MP Tim Farron accusing the prime minister of ‘playing politics on the basis of division’.
Emma Carr, director of Big Brother Watch, said the government needed to outline what is meant by extremist’.
Sam Bowman, deputy director of the Adam Smith Institute, feared the anti-extremism proposals could result in the state being able to ‘pick and choose the ideas that British citizens can express’.
Deputy Director of the Adam Smith Institute Sam Bowman was quoted in Bloomberg Business, arguing that the Government's pledge to crackdown on hate preachers is both illiberal and a threat to free speech.
Sam Bowman, deputy director of the Adam Smith Institute, a research group, said the proposals are “particularly concerning” and could lead to people accused of preaching hatred being banned without trial from speaking in public or using Twitter and Facebook.
For further comments or to arrange an interview, contact Head of Communications Kate Andrews: email@example.com | 07584 778207
The right to free speech cannot be conditional on what is being said. ‘Hate preachers’ may be bad people but unless they are making direct threats or incitements to violence - which we already have laws against - their ideas must be given the full protection of the law. That includes preaching intolerance. Anything less gives the state the power to pick and choose the ideas British citizens can express.
The details of these proposals are particularly concerning – people accused of hate preaching will be banned from speaking in public or using Twitter or Facebook.
These measures are almost certain to be abused as well – stop-and-search laws originally justified on anti-terror grounds are now mostly used to stop conventional crimes, and in 2008 it emerged that half of local councils had been using anti-terror laws to snoop on people who put their rubbish out on the wrong day.
We should hold these ideas up to scrutiny and challenge them in public debate, not push them into the shadows. With these measures Theresa May has crossed a line – if she pushes ahead, significant liberties will be lost.
Deputy Director of the Adam Smith Institute Sam Bowman argued that the appointment of John Whittingdale as culture secretary could be bad news for the BBC in the CityAM debate:
John Whittingdale has described the licence fee as being “worse than a poll tax,” and wants to decriminalise non-payment. That is a good idea: 10 per cent of magistrate court cases are for licence fee non-payment. Every week that means 3,000 people are fined and one person is jailed. Women make up about 70 per cent of convictions and half of those jailed. The BBC was never meant to be the £5bn behemoth that it has grown into. If there is any case for a mandatory public broadcaster at all, it is for one that produces worthy content that the market would not provide otherwise. But most of its budget goes on things like Doctor Who and The Voice, which the private sector would produce if the Beeb wasn’t. The BBC needs to be cut down to size, and the new culture secretary might be the man to do it. Whittingdale is bad news for the BBC – and that’s good news for the rest of us.
The ASI's Dr Eamonn Butler has featured in The Sun one day out from the election debunking nine of Labour's pledges and arguments; topics include zero-hours contracts, inequality, tax rates, cuts to welfare, the NHS, poverty, government spending, the proposed mansion tax and university tuition fees.
Head of Communications at the Adam Smith Institute Kate Andrews argues that the NHS is in need of serious reform that emulate European health systems like Switzerland and Germany on BBC Points West. (Starts 1:30)
Deputy Director of the Adam Smith Institute Sam Bowman gave his analysis of misguided political consensus leading up to the General Election to Hunger TV:
It hasn’t exactly been the most thrilling election – the main parties seem to agree on more than they disagree on. That’s understandable, but here are three areas where the political consensus might be amazingly wrong:
Director of the Adam Smith Institute Dr Eamonn Butler responds to Edinburgh Makar Christine De Luca's poem about Adam Smith in The Scotsman.
Dr Eamonn Butler, director of the Adam Smith Institute, said of the poem: “It’s a nice, sympathetic portrait of Adam Smith, but the economics aren’t quite right. Globalisation is nothing new – Smith himself in 1776 pointed out that even the ‘rough woollen coat’ of a ‘day-labourer’ involved the labour of thousands of people, across many continents. And are we missing the Invisible Hand by which our self-interested market transactions actually produce mutual benefit? A little, but only because markets are being distorted by politicians who mistakenly think they can do better. But the best laid schemes o’ rodents and rulers gang aft agley.”