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Brexit

How freedom was lost in Brexit

When the UK voted to leave the European Union in last year’s referendum, it was widely interpreted as a victory of the political right.That was not incorrect. The right wing of the Conservative Party and the populist UK Independence Party were the forces behind the Leave campaign.How ironic, therefore, that 10 months later the entire spectrum of British politics has shifted to the left.Having spent the past week in London, meeting politicians and think tankers, it was impossible not to miss... Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
The National Business Review
26 May, 2017
blue piggy on the grass 1

Election year Budgets, illusions and conjuring tricks

On television early yesterday evening I saw a well-known presenter give Budget 2017 an 8 out of 10 for massaging the electorate. A subtitle read “something for everyone”. Really? Can shuffling the same deck of cards improve everyone’s hand? That would be a conjuring trick. Election year Budgets are first and foremost about taking and spending voters’ money. They don’t create more money. They reshuffle it. Billions more dollars are to be spent. Read more

Dr Bryce Wilkinson
Insights Newsletter
26 May, 2017
Rocket website thumbnail

Look up!

While Budget days bring focus to the Government’s spending priorities, there is no budget day for regulation. Regulation never gets the same attention as spending, but it is at least as important. The Public Finance Act constrains government against doing particularly silly things in the budget, but it remains too easy to get regulation horribly wrong. Yesterday’s Budget coincided with the culmination of one notable bit of regulatory success, to which we will return. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
26 May, 2017
NZcoins

A Budget Day Conspiracy

I thought the point of the Budget lock-up was to give everyone adequate time to process and digest complex information, and ensure no media organisation had an exclusive.Now I’m not so sure. In fact, I have a theory. Everyone in the room (excluding a few choice journalists*) paid off some chump to write op-eds that would be used as templates for every news organisation. Approximately one hour is used “personalising” their Budget hot-takes. Read more

Jenesa Jeram
Insights Newsletter
26 May, 2017

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