Med COIN-Bloggen kommenteres løbende på dagsaktuelle emner. Vi vil søge at præge debatten, sådan at de skjulte konsekvenser ved nye former for indgreb, afgifter, skatter, forbud bliver gjort mere synlige.
I know all about subsidies. For years, I took them myself for my corn and soybean farm. I didn’t really enjoy it, but they were available and I rationalized my participation: Other industries received payments and tax breaks -- why shouldn’t I? In addition, I spent 14 years as the head of the American Farm Bureau, the leading farmers’ lobby and a prime player in the creation of the subsidy system.
In the 1990s, however, a trip to New Zealand made me realize that eliminating subsidies was not just a free-market fantasy, but rather a policy that could work in an advanced industrial nation. New Zealanders had stopped subsidizing their farmers, cold turkey, in 1984. The transition was controversial and not without its rough spots, yet it succeeded. On that visit and several later ones, I never met a farmer who wanted to go back to subsidies.
Dean Kleckner in Reverse Course
Danmark tildeles en delt 15. plads i det Canadiske Fraser Institutes oversigt over økonomisk frihed i verden, der udkom den 4. september. Hong Kong ligger på en førsteplads med Singapore på andenpladsen, og en interessant tredieplads tildeles New Zealand. Svenskerne er nede på en 22. plads, som de blandt andre deler med nordmændene. - Læs rapporten her. (Tal for Danmark findes på side 77).
I pressemeddelelsen fra FA kan man blandt andet læse at: Research shows that individuals living in countries with high levels of economic freedom enjoy higher levels of prosperity, greater individual freedoms, and longer life spans. At økonomisk frihed fører til øget personlig frihed er en vigtig pointe, som man i øvrigt ikke kan tage for givet at andre tilslutter sig. Socialister mener således, at økonomisk kontrol øger en "alternativ" form for personlig frihed. Imidlertid har de det canadiske instituts resultater imod sig. Uden respekt for den private ejendomsret bliver friheden illusorisk.
(Set via Munkhammar).
New Zealand har ikke gjennomført noen gradvis overgang til frimarkedslandbruk, de tok en beslutning og fjernet alt som het subsidier, just like that. Dette betyr at bødenes nøkkel til overlevelse ligger i deres evne til å dekke forbrukernes etterspørsel og krav. Det problemet som rir sosialistisk (planøkonomisk) lanbruk som en mare eksisterer ikke lenger: Der er ingen overproduksjon. Der er ingen "smørberg", "melkehav" eller "vinsjøer" (NZ produserer faktisk noen ypperlige hvitviner). Ett år ble 6 mill lam destruert og gjort om til gjødsel, for ingen ville kjøpe kjøttet, til tross for subsidiene. Denne typen problemer gjør seg ikke gjeldende når markdedet overtar, og byråkratiske planleggere elimineres. - Det kan man læse i Per-Anton Rønnings kommentar Frimarkedslandbruk.
Maurice P McTigue forklarer hvordan man i New Zealand reducerede statens rolle i samfundet. Her følger nogle uddrag (link til hele teksten findes nederst):
If we look back through history, growth in government has been a modern phenomenon. Beginning in the 1850s and lasting until the 1920s or ’30s, the government’s share of GDP in most of the world’s industrialised economies was about 6%. From that period onwards - and particularly since the 1950s - we’ve seen a massive explosion in government share of GDP, in some places as much as 35-45%. (In the case of Sweden, of course, it reached 65%, and Sweden nearly self-destructed as a result. It is now starting to dismantle some of its social programs to remain economically viable.) Can this situation be halted or even rolled back? My view, based upon personal experience, is that the answer is "yes." But it requires high levels of transparency and significant consequences for bad decisions - and these are not easy things to bring about.
New Zealand’s per capita income in the period prior to the late 1950s was right around number three in the world, behind the United States and Canada. But by 1984, its per capita income had sunk to 27th in the world, alongside Portugal and Turkey. Not only that, but our unemployment rate was 11.6%, we’d had 23 successive years of deficits (sometimes ranging as high as 40% of GDP), our debt had grown to 65% of GDP, and our credit ratings were continually being downgraded. Government spending was a full 44% of GDP, investment capital was exiting in huge quantities, and government controls and micromanagement were pervasive at every level of the economy.
When a reform government was elected in 1984, it identified three problems: too much spending, too much taxing and too much government. The question was how to cut spending and taxes and diminish government’s role in the economy. Well, the first thing you have to do in this situation is to figure out what you’re getting for dollars spent. Towards this end, we implemented a new policy whereby money wouldn’t simply be allocated to government agencies; instead, there would be a purchase contract with the senior executives of those agencies that clearly delineated what was expected in return for the money. Those who headed up government agencies were now chosen on the basis of a worldwide search and received term contracts - five years with a possible extension of another three years. The only ground for their removal was non-performance, so a newly-elected government couldn’t simply throw them out as had happened with civil servants under the old system. And of course, with those kinds of incentives, agency heads - like CEOs in the private sector - made certain that the next tier of people had very clear objectives that they were expected to achieve as well.
As we started to work through this process, we also asked some fundamental questions of the agencies. The first question was, "What are you doing?" The second question was, "What should you be doing?" Based on the answers, we then said, "Eliminate what you shouldn’t be doing" - that is, if you are doing something that clearly is not a responsibility of the government, stop doing it. Then we asked the final question: "Who should be paying - the taxpayer, the user, the consumer, or the industry?" We asked this because, in many instances, the taxpayers were subsidising things that did not benefit them. And if you take the cost of services away from actual consumers and users, you promote overuse and devalue whatever it is that you’re doing.
We achieved an overall reduction of 66% in the size of government, measured by the number of employees. The government’s share of GDP dropped from 44 to 27%. We were now running surpluses, and we established a policy never to leave dollars on the table: We knew that if we didn’t get rid of this money, some clown would spend it. So we used most of the surplus to pay off debt, and debt went from 63% down to 17% of GDP. We used the remainder of the surplus each year for tax relief. We reduced income tax rates by half and eliminated incidental taxes. As a result of these policies, revenue increased by 20%. Yes, Ronald Reagan was right: lower tax rates do produce more revenue.
Læs mere her. (Også om tilgangen til og/eller synet på landbrugsstøtte, uddannelsespolitik, transport, konkurrencedygtighed, regulering, beskatning mv.)
Reprinted by permission from IMPRIMIS, the monthly journal of Hillsdale College
I rapporten "Are observed changes in the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere really dangerous?" gør C. R. DE FREITAS fra School of Geography and Environmental Science, University of Auckland, New Zealand op med følgende falske myter:
FALLACY TWO: HUMANS ARE BIG PLAYERS IN THE GLOBAL CARBON CYCLE.
FALLACY THREE: THERE IS A CLOSE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CHANGES IN ATMOSPHERIC CARBON DIOXIDE AND GLOBAL TEMPERATURE.
FALLACY FOUR: GLOBAL TEMPERATURE HAS INCREASED OVER THE PAST TWO DECADES.
FALLACY FIVE: SATELLITE DATA SUPPORT IPCC CLAIMS ON OBSERVED AND PROJECTED GLOBAL WARMING.
FALLACY SIX: GLOBAL CLIMATE TRENDS DURING THE PAST CENTURY ARE VERY UNLIKE THOSE OF THE PAST.
FALLACY SEVEN: THERE ARE RELIABLE FORECASTS OF FUTURE CLIMATE.
FALLACY EIGHT: SIGNIFICANT ANTHROPOGENIC GLOBAL WARMING IS UNDERWAY.
FALLACY NINE: GLOBAL WARMING WILL PRODUCE A RISE IN SEA LEVEL.
FALLACY TEN: GLOBAL WARMING WILL RESULT IN MORE EXTREME WEATHER EVENTS.
FALLACY ELEVEN: IPCC’S PREDICTIONS ARE REASONABLE.
FALLACY TWELVE: OBSERVED TEMPERATURE TRENDS ARE THOSE PREDICTED BY CLIMATE MODELS.
FALLACY THIRTEEN: THERE IS A CONSENSUS THAT GREENHOUSE INDUCED CLIMATE CHANGE IS A MAJOR THREAT.
FALLACY FOURTEEN: THE THREAT OF HUMAN-CAUSED CLIMATE CHANGE JUSTIFIES TAKING THE ACTION PROPOSED IN THE UNFCCC AND KYOTO PROTOCOL. (pdf, 31 sider).
I et åbent brev til medlemmer af det New Zealandske parlament den 21. juli i år, angiver en række klimaforskere ni grunde til, at staten i New Zealand bør oprette en uafhængig kommision, der vil kunne tjene som modvægt til FN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change - IPCC.
Disse argumenter for oprettelsen af en sådan kommision (der imidlertid i stedet burde finansieres via private midler sådan at troværdigheden sikres) er:
Læs mere på The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition.