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Ryan Bourne
7 April 2015
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In the aftermath of the Cold War, we were told that capitalism had won. Communism had been defeated, and we were entering Francis Fukuyama’s “End of History” – with capitalist...
Ryan Bourne
18 February 2015
1 comment

Forget all the populist welfare crackdowns dominating the election headlines over the past week. These are small fry compared to the gargantuan task of rolling out the government’s long-awaited...
Christopher Snowdon
16 February 2015
12 comments

Robert Peston, the BBC’s economics editor, has recently made his contribution to the rapidly growing genre of polemical inequality documentaries with the ‘The Price of Inequality’...
Ryan Bourne
28 January 2015
11 comments

Fairly often the facts get in the way of a good meme. The cricketer Stuart Broad has angered a host of constantly-outraged egalitarians by tweeting that ‘I’ve heard if you earn minimum...
Ryan Bourne
20 January 2015
1 comment

One of the insights of the Public Choice School of economics is that voting groups with more homogenous interests will have much more influence on the political process than those with more diffuse...
Philip Booth
8 December 2014
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Interventions by Christian clergy in welfare debates are commonplace. Indeed Cardinal Nichols argued this year in an interview for The Daily Telegraph that the welfare safety net had been torn apart...
Sam Collins
17 October 2014
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There is a wonderful story about the realism (or pessimism) of young people. A polling company had asked a group of university students whether they believed they had a better chance of receiving a...
Kristian Niemietz
15 October 2014
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William Beveridge is not a popular figure among classical liberals. He is blamed for paving the way for the nationalisation of social security, or at least greatly amplifying an existing trend in...
Philip Booth
2 October 2014
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George Osborne’s conference speech earlier this week brought back memories of a paper that was published by the IEA back in 2011 called Sharing the Burden which caused something of a storm. The...
Ryan Bourne
7 September 2014
2 comments

Today marks the start of the IEA’s ‘Cutting the UK's Cost of Living’ month as part of our 2020 Vision programme – an attempt to shine a light on key issues which we...
Philip Booth
8 August 2014
8 comments

To me, reducing poverty matters very much. That is why I believe in a market economy. However, I am entirely uninterested in the issue of inequality. If you take the position that inequality matters...
Christopher Snowdon
16 July 2014
2 comments

Recently, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation released an updated version of its Minimum Income Standard (MIS) which looks at what modern Britons need to achieve an ‘acceptable standard of living...
Ryan Bourne
9 July 2014
1 comment

You can often tell where someone is coming from in public policy debates by their use of language. In Capital in the Twenty-First Century, for example, Thomas Piketty uses the word ‘claimed...
Ryan Bourne
13 June 2014
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Zero-hours contracts. High prices. Benefit cuts. Unemployment. Childcare costs. According to the international development charity Oxfam, the combination of these individual factors in Britain has...
Philip Booth
22 May 2014
1 comment

Yesterday, Catholic Archbishop George Stack made some remarks about poverty which, like so many remarks made by bishops on the subject, took statistics out of context in order to justify very...
Philip Booth
18 May 2014
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According to columnists on the left, Thomas Piketty’s new book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, has not been adequately answered by those who believe in free-market capitalism. One obvious...
Anna Rowlands and Philip Booth
23 April 2014
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    Anna Rowlands: Philip Booth raises the question of a Catholic reflection on the role of the state, and whether the Cardinal’s comments place him in a position of personal opinion...
Philip Booth and Anna Rowlands
17 April 2014
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  Anna Rowlands: Ensuring that all citizens are protected from destitution and receive basic care and subsistence when in dire need has typically been seen as the core purpose of the welfare...
Kristian Niemietz
3 April 2014
2 comments

Most arguments in favour of a mandatory living wage, or a large hike in the National Minimum Wage (NMW), are playing to a left-wing gallery. There is the paleo-Keynesian argument that a higher NMW...
Christopher Snowdon
21 March 2014
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On Sunday, the Observer reported that ‘Inequality costs Britain £39bn a year’. This is based on the belief that ‘a more equal UK would experience less crime and imprisonment,...