Earlier this year, various left-wing gladfies kicked up a stink about a funding grant from the Koch Foundation — run by oft-vilified US billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch –to the Fraser Institute.
The Vancouver Observer was especially apoplectic, noting numerous links between the Koch foundation and various Canadian conservatives. What’s more, they noted that the contributions had been going on for years.
This was during a period of time when Canadian left-wing activist groups masquerading as charities were under scrutiny for the amount of funding they received to campaign against the Alberta oil sands. The “shocking revelation” that the Fraser Institute had received money from the Koch Foundation was often seized upon as an equivalent example of conservatives receiving funding from so-called foreign radicals.
Unfortunately for passes for journalism at publications like the Observer, what none of the authors who tackled the subject for that publication bothered to do was contact the Fraser Institute and find out exactly what it was that the Koch Foundation’s contributions were funding. I was fortunate enough to be contacted by the Fraser Institute, and what I accordingly “discovered” — which hardly seems to be an appropriate word for something that was never covered-over in the first place — was that the Koch Foundation grants were for the Fraser Institute’s international research projects, more specifically the economic freedom index.
The Fraser Institute has now released the 2012 edition of the economic freedom index. It deals primarily with economic conditions as of 2010 and as it pertains to North America, it has staggering implications for Alberta:
We’re number one!
This will almost certainly be infuriating to Justin Trudeau, who insists that Canada belongs to Quebec, and that no one other than Quebeckers — and certainly not Albertans — have any business running the country. But as it turns out, Alberta is the most economically free province or state in North America. Quebec came in at a paltry 49th.
Why does this matter? Because it turns out that places that are economically free prosper. Comparatively, those that are economically not free do not prosper.
In fact, the GDP per capita of the most free regions tended to be as much as nearly $16,000 higher than those of the least free regions.
Not that anyone should expect this stunning empirical rebuke of Justin Trudeau to have any effect whatsoever on those clamouring for him to become the next Liberal Party leader, or the next Prime Minister: after all, he’s dreamy and that’s all such people seem to care much about.
As for the Koch Foundation and the Fraser Institute, it’s almost certain that the Canadian left will continue to dredge up the stunning — I say, stunning! — “revelations” that the Koch Foundation donated to the Fraser Institute time and time again, and will never ever mention that the purpose of those contributions was to fund something so benign as a study into economic freedom.