When the conferences moved into Eastern Europe, LI members enabled us to offer scholarships to students and young activists from the region. Over 500 individuals have participated thanks to the scholarships, and many have gone on to start or expand think tanks, become academics, journalists, businesspeople, or run for public office. One of the recipients of our 2006 Prague conference scholarship was a young Polish activist, Jacek Spendel, who is now LI President.
The LI conferences generated the Liberty English Camps, starting in Lithuania in 1997 by Virgis Daukas and Stephen Browne, which have run nearly every year since with substantial help in recent years from LI director Lobo Tiggre. Glenn Cripe joined the team in 2004, and spearheaded the expansion of Liberty Camps into 30 countries, reaching nearly 5000 students. As with LI conferences, the Camps have inspired a large number of liberty leaders.
Around 1980, Ken Schoolland, professor of economics at Hawaii Pacific University, produced a series of audience-friendly radio commentaries into a satirical, free-market book: The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible: A Free Market Odyssey. In 1990, Hubert Jongen sponsored the Dutch translation, and it was off to the races. JG has now been published in a record-shattering 57 languages around the world through the LI network. The book has won awards from several organizations including the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) and endorsements from freedom luminaries Milton Friedman, Walter Williams, Steve Forbes, John Stossel, and Mark Skousen. There is an online flash animation based on the book in 48 languages, and stage productions in Slovenia, Kazakhstan, and several African countries.
Liberty International has also sponsored the translation of several other liberty books by Mary Ruwart, Frederic Bastiat, Walter Block, Karl Hess, and works by Ayn Rand in her native Russia!
During the 1990s, LI updated the SIL pamphlet series, publishing 37 titles in English plus 18 Spanish translations. Over 3 million printed issue pamphlets were distributed across the US. They are still available on the LI website.
All of the above projects over the decades have contributed to what we call our “Johnny Appleseed” strategy of introductory public education and network-building around the world.