Planning in a free society

Written by | Thursday 8 March 2012

London as a case study for a spontaneously planned future.

Plain packaging

Written by | Monday 20 February 2012

Commercial expression, anti-smoking extremism and the risks of hyper-regulation.

Christopher Snowdon examines the case for plain packaging of cigarettes, including examples from around the world. He finds that its supposed benefits are, in fact, nonexistant, and plain packaging laws may have significant unintended consequences as well, including making counterfeiting of cigarettes more common. Plain packaging laws could lead us down a slippery slope where alcohol and even fatty foods are also controlled by the government.

Patterns of sustainable specialization and trade

Written by | Friday 3 February 2012

Adam Smith and David Ricardo explained the benefits of trade, based on specialization and comparative advantage. These concepts, says Arnold Kling, also can provide the basis for explaining fluctuations in employment. In this paper Kling proposes that we jettison the Keynesian paradigm of aggregate supply and demand (AS-AD) in favor of an alternative paradigm, which he calls patterns of sustainable specialization and trade (PSST).

The growth agenda: The self-employment option

Written by | Monday 9 January 2012

How one small change in mindset could free millions of SMEs from onerous regulation and tax by allowing more of their employees to register as self-employed. 


The law of opposites: Illusory profits in the financial sector

Written by | Wednesday 14 December 2011

Accurate accounting is at the root of the legal and scrutiny framework; without accurate accounts basic laws are incapable of enforcement. This report argues that international accounting rules have given the impression of illusory profits on bank balance sheets, inflating bonuses and creating perverse incentives for banks to act recklessly.

Renewable energy: Vision or mirage?

Written by | Monday 12 December 2011

The government is spending enormous sums of money on renewable energy. This report assesses the economic and energy security cases for renewable energy subsidies, and finds that there is no prospect that renewable energy will be able to provide a substantial amount of Britain's energy needs.

Reforming the National Health Service

Written by | Friday 9 December 2011

In this report, retired industrial line manager and entrepreneur Chris Davies reflects on his experience of four decades of NHS care, and details the numerous occasions on which Britain's health service has failed him. He argues that the NHS is a fifties-style nationalized service that does “time wasting and inconvenience on a monumental scale" and is fundamentally incapable of serving its customers effectively.

Bank regulation: Can we trust the Vickers Report?

Written by | Thursday 17 November 2011

In this response to the Vickers report, financial experts Tim Ambler and Miles Saltiel argue that the report's findings fail to address the root causes of the financial crisis and would create another layer of bureaucracy. Instead, the government should allow the creation of new "Trust Banks" that would be safely run, reduce arguments for protection of riskier banks, and introduce new competition to the high street.

Briefing paper

Hanging London out to dry: The impact of an EU Financial Transaction Tax

Written by | Friday 4 November 2011

In a follow up his last report on the Tobin Tax, Adam Baldwin assesses the impact of the European Commission's Financial Transaction Tax on Britain. He draws on the EC's impact assessment and independent research and concludes that it would wipe out derivatives trading in the City, hurt economic growth and increase market volatility.


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