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Ron Manners’ ideas
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For a few years I have been writing about my visits to various countries, mainly as part of the annual Free Market Road Show I attend each year (as I write this, I’m about to jump on a plane for the 2017 road show in Spain). Visiting so many countries has given me an insider’s view of which economic and cultural ideas work, and which ones don’t.

It has also given me a view of the outcomes flowing from ‘good ideas’, usually resulting in a safe and secure civilization versus the outcome of ‘bad ideas’ which often produce ‘crap-heaps’. Usually the countries welcoming freedom of speech and fresh ideas attract new residents and the others are the countries from which people flee.

Fortunately, Australia generally welcomes free speech and new ideas (outside of our universities that is).

So, for my example today let me explain that just as I was writing and extolling the virtues of Estonia as a model country, and commending them on how they learnt so much from Russia’s 2007 cyber attacks on their banks and communities, I found myself suffering a similar attack of cyber vandalism from a militant mob in Turkey who were offended about my articles Adventures in Turkey and Different Countries, Similar Problems.

They were offended because I had cheekily suggested that they were a successful country of entrepreneurs who would continue that way as long as they limited government involvement in their lives.

The thought of limiting a government in its size and reach was so offensive to this bunch of Turkish cyber bullies that they completely blew up my new website and replaced it with a message extolling the virtues of statisim.

So what is my response to these cyber vandals? It’s yet another example of how bullying usually brings about the opposite of the bullies’ intent. In this case it gives me an opportunity to poke fun at them and their ‘comedy of contradictions’. They wanted to blow my website out of the water but here I am, back with a rebuilt website featuring another example of the fatal conceit of those trying to control the lives of others.

Their efforts simply making them look stupid. I hope this might encourage them to go find a job and be part of the wonderfully creative and productive citizens of Turkey, of whom I spoke of so highly in my 2001 article.




  • Good on you, Ron.
    Personally, I think Turkey is going to become a basket case under Erdogan, and another area of severe instability. Such a shame.
    Mind you, Australia is also heading towards becoming an irrecoverable basket case.
    Thank God I’ve reached the age I have!

  • Dear Ron,
    Thank you for this great article on Turkey. I don’t have time to read all your articles but I greatly enjoy those that I do, and this one is no exception.
    I spent two months working in Turkey in 2012, in the city of Izmir (ancient Smyrna) and came to love the place. But, as you probably know, Izmir is “different”. The citizens of Izmir are more likely to oppose the policies of Ankara and Istanbul, just to be “ornery”, than to simply accept them, and this history of opposition and freedom goes back many decades. It is written about very well in the book “Paradise Lost: Smyrna 1922” by Giles Milton in which describes Izmir’s protection of foreign nationals, who were technically “the enemy”, during WWI.
    And I too came to love the Turks that I met during my short time working there.
    In particular I remember the comments of a merchant in the bazaar in Izmir, the Kemeralti. I went down into his basement with him, where he gave me a beer, and proceeded to sell me things that I didn’t need at vastly inflated prices. As we talked about life he and his son told me a lot about the last 200 years of Turkish history, but most memorably, he told me why he loved Izmir so much, “Izmir is not like Ankara. In Izmir I am free. I don’t have stupid people making stupid rules telling me how I should live my life.”
    He told me many other memorable stories too about his life and experiences. He was a “shark” in the bazaar, but I had a love for that rogue of a man.

  • Keep up the good work Ron and for standing up to these Cyber Bullies. I fear we are rapidly losing the “Free World” and freedom of speech. George Orwell would have been proud of you!

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