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Individual Liberty at No Cost to Anyone Else

07 October 2011
Everyone says they believe in freedom. The kind of freedom that endures is individual liberty that comes at no cost to anyone else. Increasing such liberty is the best way to solve many of S A and the world’s problems. Friedrich Hayek, the eminent 20th century economist, wrote The Road to…

ANCYL Misconceives Economic Freedom

18 August 2011
According to US economist Walter Williams, a simple definition of “economic freedom” (more generally known as “a free market”), is “voluntary exchange between individuals free of third party intervention”. This is certainly not what the ANC Youth League (the ANCYL) mean in their declaration that “7 cardinal pillars of economic…

The Free Market and its Enemies

12 Aug 11   Temba A Nolutshungu
Human beings are driven to improve their socio-economic circumstances. They utilise whatever resources of material and intellectual capital they have to address their condition of unlimited wants. They engage in economic transactions with fellow humans. Those who produce goods and services sell them to those who need them. A spontaneous…

Will South Africa Choose Entitlement or Enlightenment – Amandla or Inkululeko?

04 Aug 11   Jasson Urbach
The theme of July’s FreedomFest held in the United States, Las Vegas was: “Are we headed for another American Revolution… or a French Revolution”. Although this theme was specifically formulated to answer questions about the direction of policy change in the US, it asks a number of fundamental questions, which…

Convert all RDP housing to full and unrestricted freehold title

29 Jul 11   Leon Louw
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if black South Africans had equal rights, if they enjoyed the same home ownership rights as whites, if they were emancipated, empowered and trusted, if they were presumed to be the equals of whites and no longer patronised? Wouldn’t we rejoice if racism were ended, not…

Nationalisation: Will ANC researchers take note of the experience of their African brethren?

07 Jul 11   Jasson Urbach
According to a recent IOL news piece, “Zambia’s Banda says copper windfall tax is ‘bad business’", Zambian President Rupiah Banda has “ruled out windfall taxes for mining companies enjoying record copper prices, saying that changing the rules for foreign investors was plain bad business”. South African authorities can take a…

Liberty is indivisible

20 May 11   Temba A Nolutshungu
It is not possible to have liberty for some and not for others in the same country. Whilst blacks were being oppressed by apartheid in South Africa, the liberty of whites was being compromised by the measures necessary to suppress the aspirations of their fellow citizens (actually non citizens). In…

Let liberty reign

19 May 11   Eustace Davie
The world has never known true liberty; those conditions under which individual freedom prevails, described by Friedrich Hayek as “a state in which each can use his knowledge for his purposes”. Hayek’s definition of freedom may appear simple but it has profound implications. Where, on earth, can individuals use their knowledge…


11 May 11   FMF Policy Bulletin
Last week’s high court ruling in favour of AgriSA’s expropriation claim against the minister of mineral resources is a judicial shot across the bows for advocates of mine nationalisation. The Pretoria High Court’s decision that the mere enactment of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) in May 2004 brought…

Transformation will be 'wiped out by nationalisation’

05 May 11   FMF Policy Bulletin
“Transformation will be nullified if nationalisation goes ahead”, said Free Market Foundation executive director Leon Louw. Speaking at the Mining Law 2011 conference, Louw noted that it was not clear why the nationalisation debate was receiving so much airtime when so much progress had been made in transforming South Africa's economy.…

Ghana provides an inescapable conclusion – nationalisation doesn’t work

20 Apr 11   Jasson Urbach
Ghana nationalised its mining sector in the early 1960s with the objective of “maximising government revenue ... and employment generation”. Instead, the industry experienced a dramatic decline following nationalisation, with gold production falling from 915,317 ounces in 1960 to 282,299 ounces by 1984. The reasons given by the World Bank…

The Freedom Charter and Nationalisation: Historical Context

20 Apr 11   Leon Louw
The Freedom Charter was written when nationalisation was such a popular concept that it was not espoused only by the “left”. It was commonplace in nominally “capitalist” countries, practised by the apartheid regime and its predecessors, and endorsed by most recognised intellectuals. It was widely regarded as the only way…

National Health Insurance: Putting the Cart before the Horse

14 Apr 11   Jasson Urbach
Health care policy in SA continues in limbo as we await the National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme. Although no official documents on the NHI have yet been released, Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan, has already begun to “lay the foundations”. In his February budget, he made provision for two major initiatives:…

Venezuela’s failed economic policies

17 Feb 11  
Venezuela’s citizens have suffered under its failed economic polices. The country has witnessed some of the highest levels of inflation over protracted periods. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s inflation was kept low and stable, but as the price of oil declined from a high in the early 1980s, revenues dried…

The Cost of Cleaning up in Cuba

20 Jan 11   FMF
The cost of cleanliness will rise in Cuba after its cash-strapped, communist government announced that soap, toothpaste and detergent will be slashed from monthly ration books, says Jenny Barchfield. Cuba's official Gazette said that effective Jan. 1, "personal cleanliness products" will join a growing list of products cut from the ration…