Friday, January 29, 2010

Libertarian Roundup #2

The UK Libertarian compares capitalism with crony capitalism. He also shows how free markets help people to take care of themselves better. And he points out the nonsense of government "creating jobs".

Bristol Dave talks about the pointless raising of the terror threat level.

Boatang & Demetriou point out Labour's final betrayal.

The Adam Smith Institute has some empirical evidence that Britain is no longer free.

Jerub-Baal shows that we're not out of the recession.

The LPUK has attracted another former UKIP member. And announces another LPUK candidate for the election.

John Redwood asks what happened to that massive stimulus.

Capitalists@Work reflects on how the Chilcot enquiry shines a light into banks' murky boardroom dealings.

Jeff Randall highlights the insanity of quangos in the current economic climate.

Crazy Elmont sees history repeating itself.

That's all for this week. However, thanks to those chaps who offered to host the Libertarian Roundup, but I think that I'll keep it in one place for the moment—maybe we'll start a travelling circus later on (as happened to the Britblog Roundup).



Bristol Dave said...

Thanks for the link DK ;-)

John said...

It is a bit of an overstatement for the Adam Smith Institute to say ‘Britain is no longer free’. The article to which you link refers to the 2010 Index of Economic Freedom produced by The Wall Street Journal and the Heritage Foundation, a Washington-based organisation not entirely without its own agenda.

This index does indicate that the UK has less economic freedom than last year. The UK has now fallen from the top 10 and its ‘Freedom Score’ is down for the fourth successive year, since 2007 when it crossed an arbitrary threshold from ‘Free’ to ‘Mostly Free’; however 2006 is the only year when the UK has been above the threshold. The UK had slightly lower scores from 1996 to 1999, for what it’s worth. However this year is its lowest ranking and a far cry from 1995 when the UK was ranked third behind Hong Kong and Singapore.

The 2010 summary is pertinent:

‘The United Kingdom’s economic freedom score is 76.5, making its economy the 11th freest [of the 183 countries] in the 2010 Index. Its score is 2.5 points lower than last year, reflecting reduced scores particularly in freedom from corruption, financial freedom, and monetary freedom. The U.K. is ranked 4th out of 43 countries in the Europe region, and its overall score is much higher than the world average.

‘The U.K. has long benefited from openness to global trade and investment. Business formation is streamlined and efficient, and there is a long tradition of entrepreneurship. An independent and efficient judicial system enforces contracts and intellectual property rights.

‘The British economy has undergone far-reaching adjustments in reaction to the global financial and economic turmoil, and a dramatic expansion of state ownership has taken place since late 2008. The government has nationalized or seized considerable ownership in some of the major banks. Deterioration in public finances is worse than in other leading economies. Welfare benefits, the biggest component of government spending, have been rising. The government deficit is widening rapidly, and public debt has climbed to around 60 percent of GDP.’

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