General

This page contains the writing that spans some of the big ideas of our time.

Publications

Hallowed Institutions: Religion and The Roots of Liberty and Prosperity
Peter Kurti
12 February 2016 | OP144

God appears to be resurgent in 21st century societies around the world. As our awareness of the claims made by religion becomes more acute, it is ever more important to understand those claims as well as the challenges and contributions religious belief has made, and…

Should a Baker be Forced to Bake Cakes for Same Sex Weddings: Democracy and the Rights and Limits of Religion and Conscience in Contemporary Australia
Anthony Fisher
06 November 2015 | OP143

How important are religious liberty and freedom of conscience is in modern statecraft and nation-building? Do they foster social cohesion and mutual respect, or are they sources of division and vilification in diverse societies? Long seen as bedrock foundations of the democratic-liberal state and the common…

National Security and Counter-Terrorism
George Brandis
06 November 2015

On Friday 6 Nov. Senator the Hon. George Brandis QC, the Commonwealth Attorney-General, Vice-President of the Executive Council and Leader of the Government in the Senate joined CIS members and friends for lunch where he spoke about national security.

Neoliberalism:The Genesis of a Political Swearword
Oliver Marc Hartwich
19 May 2009 | OP114

Neoliberalism is one of the most commonly used words in political debates. Despite this, the origins of neoliberalism are hardly known. Nor does there appear to be a generally accepted definition of the term. Some commentators have linked it to ‘extreme capitalism’; others have called…

Fairness in a Liberal Society
Richard Epstein
28 November 2005 | OP99

Richard Epstein unravels different conceptions of fairness, a term which is elusive and indefinable, yet an indispensible part of our language.  Fairness is linked directly to rights, how that are aquired and then, eventually distributed.

Media & Commentary

Libertarians as useful idiots
Simon Cowan
02 December 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

In the wake of the ascendancy of Trump, Libertarians are being told to ally with the Left to oppose the new authoritarians. We are told that we shouldn’t criticise university…

From pillory to post-truth
Peter Kurti
02 December 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

The word designated by Oxford Dictionaries as the Word of the Year for 2016 is post-truth — as in, “some commentators have observed that we are living in a post-truth…

Freedom fighters stop free speech. Surprised?
Peter Kurti
01 December 2016 | Daily Telegraph

Melbourne-based group Jews against fascism claims to be standing up for freedom. But stamping out free speech and intimidating fellow Australians are tactics direct from the fascist playbook. Conservative Jewish…

US election diary
Peter Kurti
19 November 2016 | The Spectator

Hoots of derision greeted me when I began predicting at the beginning of the year that Donald Trump would win the US presidential election in November. “What’s the math on…

The government’s a mess, but remember Labor’s old ideals
Robert Carling
07 November 2016 | The Spectator - Flat White

Remember all that Marxist/Leninist guff, circa a century ago, about public ownership of the ‘commanding heights’ of the economy? If you think it went out with privatisation of Telstra, the…