With my head still spinning from research on other projects, I thought for relaxation I would take shots at an absurdly easy target: the independent, research organization called the Fraser Institute.
The Sixth Estate was a blog that explored how money shapes public debate “in ways that are seldom acknowledged,” enabling “certain voices to be amplified, while others are comparatively stifled.”
Of course, the voices of Canada’s wealthiest business owners are regularly amplified by the Fraser Institute, which spends about $1-million a month on “research” from its esteemed, and materialistic, panel of approved scholars.
Earlier this year, The Sixth Estate examined a Fraser Institute School Report Card. The organization boasts that its reports are peer reviewed rigorously but observers have questioned the quality, even the sincerity, of the process:
As usual, five of the reviewers of this report are actually dead, some others are in their 90s, and one of them is also the author, a conflict of interest if ever there was one.
This gem found its way into sneering reviews of the think-tank that other bloggers love to write. That may be because, unlike the academic researchers, none of us are recipients of Fraser Institute largesse.
The institute’s people are not all braindead though and someone decided to amend the webpage identifying their Editorial Advisory Board, moving dead folks to a separate section. The remaining 21 people have an average age of 70 so further amendments to the list may become necessary sooner than later.
Here is the group with a bit of biographic information. You may note that although the Fraser Institute styles itself “Canada’s leading public policy think tank,” only half the Editorial Advisory Board resides in Canada.
- Professor Armen Alchian — Age 97 — ex-UCLA laissez-faire economist whose most noted works were published four and five decades ago.
- Professor Terry L. Anderson — Age 65 — former Montana State economist, G.W. Bush adviser on public lands, senior fellow of the right-wing Hoover Institution, believes in privatization of public lands. He is the director of PERC (the Political Economy Research Center) which publishes papers sharply critical of popular U.S. environmental laws such as the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act.
- Professor Robert Barro — Age 67 — neo-classical economist at Harvard, senior fellow of the right-wing Hoover Institution.
- Professor Michael Bliss — Age 70 — retired University of Toronto professor, author and social commentator, advocate of privatizing Canadian healthcare.
- Professor James M. Buchanan — Age 92 — Tennessee born economist of the “Chicago School”, senior fellow of libertarian Cato Foundation, retired professor of Virginia’s George Mason University.
- Professor Jean-Pierre Centi — Age 66 — professor of economics at the University of Aix-en-Provence in France and a member of the so-called “Nouveaux Economistes” group.
- Professor John Chant — Age 72 — an Emeritus Professor in the Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University. He has written on financial institutions and their regulation.
- Professor Bev Dahlby — Age 60 — a professor and fellow at the Institute for Public Economics at the University of Alberta. He has published extensively on tax policy.
- Professor Erwin Diewert — Age 70 — UBC microeconomic theorist specialized in productivity measurement.
- Professor Stephen Easton — Age 62 — SFU economist, editor of Privatizing Prisons by the Fraser Institute, promoter of privatization of education, frequent contributor to publications of the Fraser Institute.
- Professor J.C. Herbert Emery — Age 44 — University of Calgary Professor, Departments of Economics and Community Health Science. Current research supported by the Donner Canadian Foundation.
- Professor Jack L. Granatstein — Age 72 — Canadian historian specialized in military matters. Supported Canadian military participation in Iraq and Afghanistan.
- Professor Herbert G. Grubel — Age 78 — former Reform Party politician, opposed to progressive taxation systems, former SFU economist, supports integration of Canadian and American currencies, fellow of the Fraser Institute.
- Professor James Gwartney — Age 71 — Florida State economist, Co-author of Economic Freedom of the World Annual Report jointly published by the Cato Institute and Fraser Institute.
- Professor Ronald W. Jones — Age 81 — University of Rochester economist, promoter of economic globalization.
- Dr. Jerry Jordan — Age 76 — Retired President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, a member of President Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisors in 1981-82, member of the Mont Pelerin society founded by Friedrich von Hayek, which sees “danger in the expansion of government, not least in state welfare, in the power of trade unions…”
- Professor Ross McKitrick — Age 46 — Professor of Economics at the University of Guelph, He is also a Senior Fellow of the Fraser Institute in Vancouver B.C., a member of Lord Nigel Lawson’s Global Warming Policy Foundation, an organization organized for climate change denial.
- Professor Michael Parkin — Age 72 — Professor Emeritus in economics, University of Western Ontario.
- Professor Friedrich Schneider — Age 63 — Austrian economist at Johannes Kepler University of Linz, former President of The European Center for the Study of Public Choice.
- Professor Lawrence B. Smith — Age 67 — Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto Economics, specialized in macroeconomics, real estate, land and housing economics.
- Mr. Vito Tanzi — Age 74 — Born in Italy, lives in Maryland. Served almost three decades with the International Monetary Fund and has written about its frequent failures.
Categories: Fraser Institute