The inaugural session of the Economic Liberty Lecture Series, which FFF and the George Mason University Econ Society, a student-run group, hosted was a great success. The event took place on Monday evening and attracted about 70 people, most of whom were students and some of whom were FFF supporters from the area.
After a pizza dinner, Econ Society president Kevin Hilferty and FFF program director Bart Frazier welcomed the crowd, and Bart then introduced the speaker, GMU economics professor Peter Boettke. There is no university in the nation that has a higher concentration of free-market and Austrian economics professors than GMU, and Pete is one of the country’s most renowned Austrian economics scholars. Pete’s style of speaking is captivating because he has the unique ability to address both academics and non-academics in the same talk.
Pete delivered a great talk about the financial bailout, applying Austrian economic principles to the debacle. He showed what other libertarians and Austrian scholars have been arguing — that the financial crisis is not the failure of free enterprise, as so many mainstream pundits continue to maintain, but rather the failure of interventionism.
The event was held in a cinema auditorium at GMU. After the talk, the audience was treated to the movie V for Vendetta. At the conclusion of this great movie, the audience broke out in spontaneous applause!
Speaking of the bailout, have you noticed that there seems to be continued chaos in the financial markets despite the passage of the bailout? It was a big con from the beginning. All the bailout accomplished was to ensure that Wall Street cronies would not have to share the financial pain that the American people are suffering and will continue to suffer.
With the crises in Iraq, Afghanistan, the war on terrorism, the drug war, banking, immigration, the dollar, the financial industry, healthcare, Social Security, and just about everything else the federal government has touched, maybe — just maybe — the American people will stop viewing the federal government as their savior and will instead start viewing it for what it is — the cause of their woes. Maybe — just maybe — they’ll finally start listening to us libertarians. Pete Boettke’s lecture, which we will be posting on our Internet Classroom Website, would be a great place for people to start.