Posted by Margaret Mason on Oct 20, 2021
The meeting was held on Zoom and 22 members participated. There was an apology from one member.
The Chair was Greg O’Shea and the guest speaker was John Roskam from the Institute of Public Affairs. President Helen welcomed members and the guest speaker. She gave an update on matters in the club. Ron is busy organising for the reopening of the market and hopefully, this can take place from the first week in November.  Plans for the first post lockdown face-to-face meeting have been arranged. This will be on the 10 November at the Royal Brighton Yacht Club.
Greg introduced the guest speaker, John Roskam. John is the Executive Director of the Institute of Public Affairs and a Fellow of the Institute of Public Administration.  He also writes a weekly column for the Australian Financial Review.
John gave a history of the Institute of Public Affairs and discussed some current issues.
The Institute of Public Affairs ( IPA) was founded in 1943. It is a non-government research organisation and its research is primarily in philosophical principles. It has around 30 staff members around Australia and about 8000 members. Anyone can join the Institute. It is a non-party political organisation and has members from Labor, Liberal and independent politicians but not Greens.
The Institute is about to start a new journal focusing on the future of Australia. John stated that he sees about a trillion dollars of debt owed by the Australian people because of the pandemic. The IPA is focused on the impact of the pandemic on small businesses and the differences between small and big businesses as well as small business employees and public servants. He believes that Australia is over-regulated and that the cost of “red tape” is approximately 176 million dollars a year. There is also the impact of the pandemic unemployment on mental health and the possibility that it can reduce the life expectancy by 2 to 5 years. John also stated that the IPA aims to shape people’s thinking over a period of time and that their research and publications are unlikely to change circumstances/situations in days, weeks, or months.
Greg thanked John Roskam for a very engaging and informative presentation as well as responses to questions by members. Sgt. John M conducted a session encouraging members to read ‘Rotary Down Under’ to avoid future fines…