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The Recession: Causes and Cures

Type: ReportsWritten by David Simpson | Thursday 18 June 2009

In The Recession: Causes and Cures, economist David Simpson analyzes the current recession and the government's responses to it. He finds that the widely-held conventional view of the economic cycle – which suggests recessions are caused by external shocks and can be remedied by a government-applied stimulus – is inadequate in the present circumstances, and is leading policymakers both to misunderstand the causes of the crisis, and to advocate the wrong cures. This report examines the real causes of the recession, and suggests policiy opyions which could bring it more quickly to an end.

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Regulatory Myopia

Type: ReportsWritten by Tim Ambler & Keith Boyfield | Thursday 18 June 2009

This response to Financial Services Authority Discussion Paper 09/2 argues that regulators, not under-regulation, are to blame for the financial crash. It points out that the banks are already minutely regulated, but that the regulators became so preoccupied with form-filling that they did not see that the whole financial system was at risk. What is needed is the kind of overall supervision that would have seen the potentially fatal risks that the banks were running and would have intervened to curb them. The authors suggest the Bank of England should take on this supervision role in future, and that far from being expanded, the powers of the Financial Services Authority (FSA), should be cut back to 'match its competence'.

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Zero Base Policy

Type: BooksWritten by Dr Madsen Pirie | Wednesday 10 June 2009

Britain is broken. Its finances are in ruins, its taxation is chaotic and punitive, its public services fail to reach adequate standards, and its public administration shows no coherence and commands no respect. In Zero Base Policy Madsen Pirie urges a new approach. Instead of tinkering at the edges by trying to improve existing policies, he urges a re-think to first principles, asking in each case what are the purposes and the objectives sought. The policies derived from such an approach make a clean break with the past, setting out how Britain can be put right. Ranging across all areas of public policy, Madsen Pirie presents the radical agenda which can transform the nation from broken Britain into a dynamic society and a successful economy, one which achieves the objectives its citizens yearn for. It should be bedtime reading for those who aspire to govern Britain in the future.

It's GCSE economics: high taxes don't work

Type: Think PiecesWritten by Dr Eamonn Butler | Thursday 07 May 2009

Dr Eamonn Butler explores the Chancellor's lack of understanding of basic economic theory, whilst pin pointing, through basic science, why his policy on tax will have a harmful effect on the public.

Why taxing the rich could make us poorer

Type: Think PiecesWritten by Dr Eamonn Butler | Thursday 30 April 2009

Dr Eamonn Butler argues that the "taxing of the rich"  will do no good for our economy and explains what the future may hold, for Britain and the Conservatives, because of this policy.

Is Britain Finished?

Type: Think PiecesWritten by Dr Eamonn Butler | Tuesday 28 April 2009

Dr Eamonn Butler points out that the Government will find it increasingly hard to pay off its huge debt, whilst warning of the problems that could occur if the Government goes through with the increased tax percentage on the rich.

With recent police activity, anti-terror adverts and CCTV everywhere no wonder we're all scared stiff

Type: Think PiecesWritten by Dr Eamonn Butler | Sunday 19 April 2009

Do we live in a country where our every move is being watched? Dr Eamonn Butler believes that the huge number of CCTV cameras on our streets have caused a new wave of anxiety amongst the public, as the police can easily target the innocent for insignificant crimes rather than taking care of the real threats to society.

Do we need a radical shake-up of boards?

Type: Think PiecesWritten by Keith Boyfield | Monday 13 April 2009

Testament to the inability of non-executive directors to maintain a rigorous oversight over the activities of banks’ executive team is reflected in the mounting losses reported by those two ugly sisters of Scottish banking, RBS and HBOS. Cross-examined by the Treasury select committee earlier this year, it was clear that the non executive members of the board had failed to rein in their CEO’s meglomania. What is more, it was revealing to learn that neither the chairmen nor the CEOs of the two banks had any banking qualifications. Nor had Adam Applegarth, the CEO of Northern Trust, or Matt Ridley, the chairman, ever sat a banking exam. [Cont'd]

Save the tax havens – we need them

Type: Think PiecesWritten by Dr Eamonn Butler | Sunday 12 April 2009

Dr Eamonn Butler argues the case for tax havens. He investigates why the G20 leaders would be so against tax havens and the people who use them.

Parliamentary Fatcats

Type: ReportsWritten by Dr Eamonn Butler & Richard Teather | Sunday 12 April 2009

According to this research by the ASI's Richard Teather and Dr Eamonn Butler, MPs' generous expenses, index-linked pensions and second-home allowances give them a multi-millionaire lifestyle that their constituents could scarcely dream of. It finds that the effective income of the average MP is £319,165 – nearly 18 times the pay of the average voter. The report also contains a 'fat-cat ranking' for each of our Westminster representatives. Click here to read the report.


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