NEWS + ANALYSIS

NEWS + ANALYSIS

PATERNALISTIC HEALTH REGULATIONS IN NEW ZEALAND VIOLATE PERSONAL CHOICE

May 3, 2016

When government officials decide they know how other people should live their lives, they tend to consider virtually every aspect of human behavior as ripe for their interference. A new study from Atlas Network partner the New Zealand Initiative examines how the country’s paternalistic “public health” movement has waged a war against the disfavored lifestyle choices of its citizens through taxation, regulation, and propaganda campaigns — violating individual preferences and personal conscience in the process.

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HOW BROADBAND INTERNET IS TRANSFORMING RURAL U.S. ECONOMIES

May 3, 2016

The busy, high-density urban environments of cities are often fertile ground for innovative, dynamic markets, but the increasing reach of broadband Internet access into rural areas of the United States has helped unleash previously untapped sources of creative destruction and economic growth, argues a recent study from Hudson Institute, an Atlas Network partner based in Washington, D.C. “Rural broadband companies contributed $24.1 billion to the economies of the states in which they operated in 2015,” the study points out, also supporting 69,595 jobs and $100 billion in e-commerce.

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PUERTO RICO’S FISCAL CRISIS HAS BEEN SLOWLY BUILDING FOR DECADES

May 2, 2016

Government planning and management of the economy can have disastrous consequences that last for generations. Puerto Rico today faces a fiscal crisis that traces its origins to profligate public corporations set up during the 1940s, in the style of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, explain a set of recent publications from Atlas Network partner the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, including a research study, expert commentary for the Fiscal Times and the Hill, and a debate between two scholars about potential solutions to the Puerto Rican debt crisis.

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AUSTRALIAN FRIEDMAN CONFERENCE BRINGS TOGETHER LIBERTARIANS FROM THROUGHOUT WORLD

May 2, 2016

Every year in Australia, the annual Friedman Conference, hosted by the Australian Libertarian Society (ALS), brings together the “who’s who” of the Australian liberty community. This year’s event, to be held May 13–16 at the stylish Aerial UTS Function Centre in Sydney, will include more than “300 activists, thought leaders, business representatives, and political influencers” to hear from some of the finest speakers in the world, including Lawson Bader, president of DonorsTrust and former president of the Competitive Enterprise Institute; Trevor Burrus, research fellow with the Cato Institute’s Center for Constitutional Studies; Australian Sen. David Leyonhjelm; George Mason University School of Law Professor Ilya Somin; North Korean defector and human rights activist Yeonmi Park; and many more.

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HOW ECONOMIC REGULATION DISTORTS MARKETS, PRICES IN PAKISTAN

May 2, 2016

“Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program,” the Nobel laureate economist Milton Friedman and Rose Friedman famously wrote in their book The Tyranny of the Status Quo. In Pakistan, an emergency committee was formed in 1965 for a war lasting only 17 days, and more than 40 years later it is the “linchpin of economic governance” in the country, explains Ali Salman, president and CEO of Pakistan-based Atlas Network partner Policy Research Institute of Market Economy (PRIME), in a new study. Published in the Sunday magazine edition of Pakistan’s largest newspaper, the News International, Salman’s study analyzes the role that the Economic Coordination Committee of the Cabinet (ECC) plays in the country’s economy, including regulation of money and credit; economic planning; management of imports, exports, tariffs, and duties; welfare state expansion; and much more.

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EXPANDING SCHOOL CHOICE PROGRAMS TO SAVE CHILDREN TRAPPED IN FAILING SCHOOLS

April 28, 2016

A quality education is crucial for children to succeed in life, but far too many public schools throughout the United States are failing — and kids remain trapped inside a system that doesn’t serve their needs. American Federation for Children (AFC), an Atlas Network partner based in Washington, D.C., is working to change that by advancing school choice policies that allow parents to choose the best educational options for their children. This week, the organization released the latest edition of its School Choice Yearbook, which provides details on school choice programs throughout the country.

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INTERACTIVE AUSTRIAN TAX AND BUDGET CALCULATOR BRINGS TRANSPARENCY TO EXPENDITURES

April 28, 2016

The cost of government is often a mystery for ordinary taxpayers, whose money is taken and funneled into an endless array of programs and expenses with opaque accountability. A new tax and budget calculator website, created by the Austrian Economics Center and the F. A. v. Hayek Institute, Atlas Network partners based in Austria, provides detailed information about state revenues and expenditures and brings a new level of government transparency to Austrians.

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CZECH REPUBLIC MOST FREE, FINLAND MOST RESTRICTIVE IN EU NANNY STATE INDEX

April 27, 2016

When many countries exist side by side in the same region, they have an opportunity to attract residents, tourism, and economic growth through policy competition — and people can make an informed choice about where to go to avoid overbearing government restrictions. The Nanny State Index, a new project from the European Policy Information Center (EPICENTER), ranks the European Union’s 28 member states “to identify the worst places to eat, drink, smoke and vape.” Taking a variety of regulations into account, the index found that Finland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Hungary have the most restrictive “nanny state” policies in the EU, while the Czech Republic, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Slovakia rounded out the five freest countries for personal life choices.

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