Not safe, just absurdly soft

MRC Executive Director Nick Cater writes in The Australian:

As if Australia Day isn’t dangerous enough for the culturally insensitive, we are now advised not to celebrate the Australian belief in mateship and the fair go. The language police at Macquarie University have declared these are dangerous stereotypes, generalised images of a person or group that “may have potentially harmful real-world consequences”. The university’s latest guide on correct speech …


Industry super is Australia's biggest closed shop

MRC Director of Policy and Research Andrew Bragg writes in The Australian Financial Review:

As The Australian Financial Review's Chanticleer column noted in December, declining union membership has not limited the growth or campaign capacity of the modern incarnation of the union movement.

The likes of Getup, Industry Super Australia (ISA) and a bunch of think tanks pursue reckless anti-business policy, naked rent seeking and hypocrisy.

Three examples have emerged …


These moral crusaders should face the axe

MRC Executive Director Nick Cater writes in The Australian:

How do you stop public officials spoiled with power roughing up people to teach them a lesson? You give them more money, says Michael Duffy, an architect of the racial vilification laws that the Australian Human Rights Commission invokes to slap down transgressors.

The lack of natural justice afforded to the accused is the subject of a parliamentary inquiry. Duffy conceded last week that the process he helped …


It’s Freedom Stupid: The revival of socialism should restore a sense of purpose to its enemies

Written by Nick Cater. First published in Quadrant, January 2017.

The good news is that the cause of freedom can draw a crowd any night of the week in an Australian capital city. It will be a young crowd too, particularly if the nature of freedom and the cost of maintaining it remain sufficiently ambiguous.

At the Friedman Conference Gala Dinner in Sydney last May, the keynote speaker challenged the New South Wales government’s lock-out laws as a grievous assault on …


New report highlights wowserism in alcohol economics: an interview with Rod Henshaw

New report highlights wowserism in alcohol economics: an interview with Rod Henshaw

Listen to Nick Cater's interview with Rod Henshaw here

Following the release of a new report by the MRC entitled Damn Lies and Statistics: The demonisation of the alcohol industry, MRC Executive Director Nick Cater spoke with 2CC's Rod Henshaw on the wild exaggerations made by anti-alcohol campaigners on the cost of social damage caused by alcohol. 

An independent review commissioned by the Menzies Research Centre and conducted by Cadence Economics, …


Welfare for millionaires: unions defend the indefensible

MRC Director of Policy and Research Andrew Bragg writes in The Australian Financial Review:

Australian unions are campaigning to retain pensions for millionaires while opposing a pension boost for battlers.

When properly exposed, this overreach should further erode sagging union membership.

The broader consequences of the misinformed pension debate should elevate sensible players to fill the unions' void but also make it harder to fix long-term budget problems.

The …


It’s time for a prohibition on taxpayer-funded fibs

MRC Executive Director Nick Cater writes in The Australian:

Never mind the hangover. The misuse of alcohol is costing us “a staggering” $36 billion a year. So proclaimed a straight-faced presenter on the ABC, a staggeringly gullible organisation with a tendency to pluck ludicrous claims from press releases and broadcast them as fact.

The uncontested $36bn figure, promoted back in 2010 by an organisation now known as the Foundation for Alcohol Research and …


Since Davos, only the climate remains unchanged

MRC Executive Director Nick Cater writes in The Australian:

There is nothing like an approaching disaster to save experts from irrelevancy. At the World Economic Forum in Davos in January, 750 economists nominated climate change as the top threat to civilisation this year. Everything else appeared to be going pretty much to plan. Britain would remain in Europe and Hillary Clinton would win the US presidential election.

“The major political legacy of the billionaire …


No Ordinary ‘Holiday Season’: Why Christmas Still Matters?

No Ordinary ‘Holiday Season’: Why Christmas Still Matters?

We do indeed hope everybody has “happy holidays” this summer but this misses the point. Christmas is more than just a holiday - it’s an annual acknowledgement that we are not the centre of the universe, and a chance to give practical support to those less fortunate and express our love and gratitude to those close to us.

 Donald Trump told a crowd in Wisconsin that people could feel free to say “Merry Christmas” again. The roars of approval that greeted the …


Christmas Broadcast by the Rt Hon Robert Menzies, Prime Minister of Australia

23 December 1953

Good evening ladies and gentlemen,

A Merry Christmas to you. It is one of the great miracles of life that once a year, on the birthday of Christ, we put away our problems and rejoice. Sometimes, in our own experience, Christmas has been a momentary relief from dangers and difficulties; sometimes, as in this very year, the culminating point of prosperity and progress. But, whichever way it goes, Christmas remains the greatest of all national and personal …


Bureaucracy stays bloated like yuletide bellies

MRC Executive Director Nick Cater writes in The Australian:

A seasonal guide to “environmentally thoughtful” indulgence from the South Australian government betrays a bureaucracy searching for useful things to do.

“Give a treat which has less environmental impact,” suggests Zero Waste SA, a division of the Department of Green Industries. “Such as a massage or tickets to a sporting event.”

Christmas has become an excuse for overbearing bureaucrats to …


MYEFO will show Australia becoming a banana republic unless we reform

Tony Shepherd writes in the Australian Financial Review

The era of the Lucky Country is coming to an end as Australia approaches $350 billion in Commonwealth debt this year. Debt which is funding recurrent expenditure. There is no hope of recovery without serious reform which needs to address the fundamental role of government in Australia.

With the release of the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) today, all Australians must now acknowledge we are living …


Tony Shepherd issues banana republic warning

Original article by Jacob Greber in the Australian Financial Review

The head of the former Abbott government's budget audit commission, Tony Shepherd, has warned Australia is becoming a "banana republic" and that Monday's budget update will confirm the nation is living beyond its means.

Until Australians recognise and understand the scale of the problem it will be difficult to achieve meaningful change, Mr Shepherd writes in an opinion piece for The Australian …


The MRC announces the Shepherd Review - Press Release

Press Release - 18 December 2016

Click here to download the official Press Release



18 December 2016 – The Menzies Research Centre (MRC) has commissioned an independent review of the nation’s economic challenges in an effort to address Australia’s current cycle of high debt, low growth and slowed investment.

A Review Panel, led by Tony Shepherd AO will develop a list of national challenges aimed at encouraging enterprise, initiative, innovation and a competitive …

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