Ideas & Liberty

Ideas & Liberty

The Institute of Public Affairs examines the philosophical and moral case for liberty. By situating current political, economic and social debate in the history of Australian and international liberalism, it is possible to shed new light on the questions of today. The Institute of Public Affairs approaches political debate firmly grounded with an appreciation of entrepeneurship, civil liberties, individual responsiblity and free markets.

Sub-topics of Ideas & Liberty


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The essence of successful nations


Tolstoy famously wrote that while happy families are all alike, unhappy families are uniquely unhappy in their own way. In their latest book, MIT economist Daron Acemoglu and Harvard political scientist James Robinson have found the Russian...

Why capitalism is awesome


Each year the glossy business magazine FastCompany releases a list of what it considers to be the ‘World's 50 most innovative companies'. This list is populated much as you would expect. In 2012, the leader is Apple, followed by Facebook,...

Regulator lets the cat out of the bag: data retention not just about national security

MEDIA RELEASE | Simon Breheny

"The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's demand to access Attorney-General Nicola Roxon's proposed data retention regime reveals how dangerous this regime could be," said Simon Breheny, Director of the Rule of Law Project at the free...

Roxon's data retention scheme worse than Australia card

MEDIA RELEASE | Chris Berg and Simon Breheny

"Attorney-General Nicola Roxon's proposal to force internet service providers to log details of every Australian's internet usage is one of the most significant threats to individual liberty in Australian history," said Simon Breheny, director of...

Submission to the Inquiry into potential reforms of national security legislation

OCCASIONAL PAPER | Chris Berg and Simon Breheny

The Institute of Public Affairs believes many of the national security proposals contained in the Attorney-General's Department's Equipping Australia against Emerging and Evolving Threats Discussion Paper are unnecessary and excessive. Many of the...

Be like Gough: 75 radical ideas to transform Australia

IPA REVIEW ARTICLE | John Roskam, James Paterson and Chris Berg

If Tony Abbott wants to leave a lasting impact - and secure his place in history - he needs to take his inspiration from Australia's most left-wing prime minister. No prime minister changed Australia more than Gough Whitlam. The key is that he did...

Freedom films we missed


Class in America


One of the great strengths of American society has been its social mobility. But according to the American Enterprise Institute's Charles Murray, that social mobility and the connection between average Americans and a new uber-intellectual and...

The totalitarian urge to censor

IPA REVIEW ARTICLE | Dr Jennifer Oriel

Like many a journalist past, Nick Cohen has raised the battle flag against censors. The reason is simple; people who love language should never salute its executioners. Five-time author and resolute liberal, Cohen hedges his bets by writing for...

IPA says 'no secret deals' on free speech


Media executives and the federal government have no right to secretly negotiate and agree to curbs on free speech, according to the free market think tank the Institute of Public Affairs. "Freedom of speech is a right that belongs to all...

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