Latest posts

2013

Abolish the Nobel Prize for economics

The economics Nobel Prize is a funny thing. Not just because it does not exist. When Alfred Nobel donated his fortune to the awards in his name, he included Physics, Chemistry, Literature, Peace and Medicine. Economics, meanwhile, only got included when the Swedish central bank established the prize “in memory of Alfred Nobel” in the late 1960s. [...]

Big government makes Europe a no-grow zone

Stopping the absolute growth of government debt, let alone repaying it, is illusory. Therefore the alternative must be to grow the denominator in the debt to GDP ratio. This would at least allow the eurozone to leave its acute debt problems behind by growing out of them. [...]

Blowing the cover off Europe’s bank crisis

As the sovereign debt crisis lingers, we should pay more attention to the complex and obscure issues facing Europe’s banking system. It will be one of the main battlegrounds of the euro crisis for the coming year. [...]

Diary

It is hard to follow the Cameron chameleon and make sense of his latest mimesis. Suddenly he believes in tax cuts, reducing benefits, cutting the budget and fighting the EU . He now actually sounds like a, well, Tory. [...]

David Cameron, a Tory reborn

The next UK election will be about what kind of country Britain wants to be: a country of business or a redistributionist welfare state? Who would have thought David Cameron would ever put this question to the electorate? [...]

Housing shortage will get worse

It is good to see housing high on the policy agenda. That is where it should be. As anyone with a stake in the housing market knows, there is a massive undersupply of housing. This is what is responsible for high and rising prices. [...]

Political risks will deepen eurozone woes

At a time when many observers were expecting the next steps in the euro crisis such as the establishment of a ‘banking union’ and the next packages for Greece, Cyprus and Portugal, the political situation has become more complicated. [...]

A Global Perspective on Localism

By international standards, New Zealand has one of the world’s most centralised forms of government. In other OECD economies, local government runs health and police services, accounts for the majority of public investment, and typically controls a third of public spending. In New Zealand, by contrast, local government has traditionally been small and weak in comparison with central government. [...]