Fiscal competition and economic freedom


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Petr Barton

Articles by this author (96)

Dutch Disease, 2nd edition

by Petr Barton    31 March 2014    0

Ladies and Gentlemen, please welcome to the stage Dutch Disease, 2nd edition. This time it’s not natural wealth that makes you poor, it’s a natural consequence of a poor policy. Until very recently, all was well with the world. The Three Musketeers were actually four, as prescribed by Mr. (...)


Are European Elections Bad for Democracy?

by Petr Barton    14 April 2014    0

“Nothing to see here, move on.” So goes the “apology” for low turnout rates in European elections as penned by many European analysts and commentators. “The US have them just as low at mid-term elections, so why worry?” Closer analysis of individual country data by the IREF, however, reveals that the (...)


Are Members of European Parliament Smart or Dumb?

by Petr Barton    27 April 2014    0

European elections are upon us. In a series of articles, IREF is helping to inform voters’ decision. Last week we analysed attendance rates by voters at elections and reasoned that European elections may be bad for democracy. It’s now time to turn the tables and consider attendance rates of (...)


Woes of Wolf of Wallstreet

by Petr Barton    4 May 2014    0

The latest Scorsese blockbuster is still making the headlines for its novel artistic work with timelines. Does the Wolf, however, have anything whatsoever to say about Wall Street? Very little, and it may actually work to strengthen and entrench any bad practices that remain in the financial (...)


Basic income is not so basic after all

by Petr Barton    9 May 2014    0

Nobody likes poverty. But how do we end it? Suppose we give everyone some money. This will automatically include the poor, we don’t have to identify them, problem solved. Is it doable? Will anyone still work, create new ideas, write poetry, love? The answer depends largely on how basic the (...)


Swiss referendum on minimum wage and the EU

by Petr Barton    18 May 2014    0

If the Yes campaign wins today, Switzerland will have by far the biggest minimum wage on this planet. We analyse this trend in a wider context of contemporary European popular movements. We suggest that the Swiss Minimum wage proposition has actually very little to do with the traditional (...)


What would be a “living wage” in the EU? The answer may surprise you.

by Petr Barton    25 May 2014    1

The concept of Living wage is gaining popularity throughout the EU. The social pressure of its advocates probably stands behind the recent proposals to increase substantial minimum wages. Closer scrutiny of the proposed levels of living wages by the IREF reveals, however, that the relationship (...)


A New Ocean Discovered! - or just another subsidy?

by Petr Barton    4 June 2014    0

Cypriot government has unilaterally “redefined” one of the conditions of its 10bn bailout package and lifted a ban on government officials traveling business class. Is this an exercise in customary opulent luxury or is it actually a hidden subsidy? And aren’t all governments guilty? Cypriot (...)


Does turnout affect fiscal policy?

by Petr Barton    9 June 2014    0

How economics - and the fiscal cycle - affect voter turnout is a richly studied question. But what about the other way? Can turnout - how many or few voters turn up to vote - affect the fiscal situation in the following period? IREF investigates and finds that people simply going and voting can (...)


28 Shades of Grey

by Petr Barton    16 June 2014    0

Prostitution is going to enter official Italian GDP figures, allegedly to help the government meet its fiscal targets... The story went viral. IREF brings you the real story beyond the headlines. Prostitutes in GDP are perfectly normal, everywhere. It’s the way that we measure our governments’ (...)


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