World Of Freedom #2 : Awards for work for freedom

By Marek Tatała, Vice President, Civil Development Forum (Poland)Translation: Sylwia Szymańska It is important to appreciate outstanding liberty organizations and the people who participate in these important activities. One of the ways to show this appreciation is by means of the prizes awarded by, among others, Atlas Network and America’s Future Foundation, prizes that you can read about in the latest episode of the “World of Freedom” series. At this time, we are going to visit some places including India, Greece, Serbia and the African continent, places from which we will begin reviewing the most interesting actions of liberty organizations that we could hear and read about in May. The Center for African Prosperity, founded by The Atlas Network is good news for the people in African countries. It is a good a new initiative that aims to promote economic freedom, property rights, the rule of law and entrepreneurship. The organization was headed by a respected entrepreneur from Senegal, Magatte Wade. This liberty-oriented center’s purpose is launching processes in African countries that will allow for permanent poverty recovery and raising the life standard of living of the continent’s inhabitants. Moving to Europe, in Athens, the annual Europe Liberty Forum conference took place. It was a chance for both deepening knowledge and exchanging experiences, above all in the field of work of the liberty-oriented NGOs. During the Forum, we could hear some inspiring performances and learn about tools that are used by organizations from Europe and other parts of the world. I myself had the pleasure to participate in a discussion about the threats to liberalism in Europe. I described the attacks on the rule of law in Poland carried out by the ruling party and the means which we use to defend ourselves against these attacks. Moreover, the heads of …

Libertarians or libertarians in name only? “Servant of the People” wins Ukrainian elections

By Marcin Chmielowski I am by no means an expert on Ukrainian politics. However, thanks to education and experience, I know something about libertarianism. Surprisingly, these two areas are linked together due to the quiet political revolution that took place in our eastern neighbors. Exit polls are showing that something unprecedented has happened. For the first time in history, parliamentary election in a large, populous country are won by political party which identifies itself as libertarian. And it’s worth a comment. What’s crucial, this victory took place in a country that is placed as 147th in 2019 Index of Economic Freedom prepared by Heritage Foundation. It’s a country, which economy is supposed to be less  free on the whole European continent and it’s currently defending itself from Russian armed aggression. Certainly, this election’s result means a huge change in the two dimensions that I wrote above, and so in the Ukraine’s politics itself as well as in the libertarian movement, which may be able to capitalize this success. Due to my knowledge and interests, I will focus on the second aspect, although I will not run away from the brief commentary on Ukrainian matters. In this case, however, my voice is not the expert’s voice but only observer’s one. Important remark for the beginning: the success of the Servant of the People should be seen as a breakdown of the popularity of President Volodymyr Zelensky – politician, who can be seen as reformist but who is definitely not a libertarian. It should be seen as de facto introducing until recently a purely virtual, structureless party to general public. We do not know yet whether the Servant of the People will enter into a coalition with someone but even if it will do it as a stronger side of the system. …

Liberty International Podcast #1

Liberty International is a podcast hosted by LI’s President Jacek Spendel. The idea behind the podcast is to introduce passionate freedom fighters form faraway countries to international audience. Guest of 1st episode is Jorge Galicia Rodriguez who is a young lawyer and one of the active oppositionists, fighting against socialist regime of Nicolas Maduro. Jorge is involved in the youth branch of VENTE Venezuela, classical liberal political party which is becoming gradually more and more popular. Jorge is Alumnus of Project Arizona 2019 – leadership project of Liberty International, designed for young liberty activists. Project Arizona is organized every year in Phoenix and its website is http://www.projectarizona.us https://youtu.be/egFRkXL5z

Liberty International World Conference Mongolia 2019 – Report

by Anastasiia Mykolenko On June, 6-9th, Liberty International World Conference 2019 was hosted in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, by the local free markets-oriented NGO Silk Road Foundation. Many of this year Conference’s attendees found the event to be “the best Liberty Conference” in terms of organization, logistics, accommodation, extra activities, and, of course, the location. Indeed, not many participants were familiar with Mongolian culture and spirit before the conference. It is  largest contiguous land empire in the world’s history, and is becoming a cultural bridge between East and West nowadays. The Mongolian team did their best to show their hospitality and high level of organizational skills. All the participants were warmly welcomed at the airport right on time and transferred to the hotel, with the locals driving them  through steppe Mongolian landscapes. Click here to watch the lectures! The first Conference’s evening started with the welcoming speech from the Founder of the Silk Road Foundation, M.Khaliunbat. Next came the Mongolian National performance and the introductory lecture by Tom Palmer. The attendees had the opportunity to “meet and greet” each other during the beautifully arranged cocktail party. The intense dive into the liberty ideas started the next day on  June, 7th. The lectures were held at the hotel’s conference room, which was an an extremely comfortable and time-efficient venue for the lunches and breakfasts. Among the first lecturers were Hugo van Reijen talking about “The Entrepreneur and the Government;” Glen Crippe, presenting his and Jacek Spendel’s activities for young freedom fighters; Andrés Cusme Franco and Maria Alejandra Londono with the case studies on Ecuador and Columbia respectively; and the young, but powerful liberty defender Ayemen Fatima from India with her lecture on the War on Drugs. These presentations were followed by the inspirational speeches of Yaron Brook and Kyle Varner. The Chinese struggle …

World Of Freedom #1 : Failed State Policies and Freedom-driven Development

By Marek Tatała, Vice President, Civil Development Forum (Poland) Translation: Sylwia Szymańska As part of this episode of the “World of Freedom,” I focus on the events that gained popularity in the world of freedom-oriented NGOs, primarily in April. Conferences, indexes, useful online tools, legislative successes or interesting analyses are just some of the events worth paying attention to. The “World of Freedom” is not only a source of information but, above all, an encouragement for civic activity, supporting freedom organizations and joining in their work. A profound understanding of past events is crucial for making better decisions for the future. Hence, many organizations remind us about the past in order to effectively fight for better policies now. The Turkish Freedom Research Association has published a video showing how ineffective state policy, not capitalism, contributed to the crisis in the country during the 1980s. In the first week, the recording reached 650,000 recipients. Click here to watch the video (in Turkish) : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZ_1vFsk38U In turn, the Venezuelan think-tank CEDICE presented a report that shows how state interventionism, especially since 1998, worsened the situation of the fuel sector in Venezuela. The solution to problems, such as inefficiency and the lack of necessary investments, is de-politicizing the sector that is privatization and banishing the state monopoly. One of the popular themes of numerous events in recent years is the phenomenon of populism. This was the subject of the panel in which I had the pleasure to participate during ATLAS Europe Liberty Forum in Athens. This theme was also a keynote of the conference of the Italian Instituto Bruno Leoni, with the participation of such guests as Deidre McCloskey, Jacques de Larosiere, Otmar Issing or Leszek Balcerowicz. Another interesting event worth paying attention to is the LibertyCon conference in Serbia organized by the …

Greetings from the LI’s new president

Dear Friends and Benefactors of Liberty International, I am writing you right after our overwhelmingly successful Liberty International World Conference in Mongolia. Huge thanks go to the Silk Road Foundation for astonishing work on their end. This World Conference had a special meaning to me as I was officially announced to be the next president of Liberty International. My journey with LI started in the summer of 2006 when I received a scholarship to attend the World Conference in Prague. That event changed my life: it opened my eyes that there are amazing people around the world who believe in the same principles as I do. It motivated me to start organizing libertarian projects in my home country and abroad. Last year’s LIWC in Kraków hosted by my Polish organization, Freedom and Entrepreneurhip Foundation, reinforced my ties with Liberty International. When last winter Ken Schoolland visited me in Phoenix to discuss becoming its president, I was ready to say Yes! Now you might ask: what is it going to change? I will start with what I am not going to change. It’s our true specialty: the family-like climate we greatly enjoy during annual World Conferences. The LIWC itself will obviously remain our flagship project and next year in Colombia will be fantastic because we have found phenomenal local partners. We will also continue Liberty Camps – my close ties to LLI and Glenn Cripe will assure that. So what do I plan to add or improve? 1. Introduce new projects to Liberty International, such as Project Arizona, a program for international freedom activists in Phoenix Liberty Hub, a website that centralizes information about international freedom activities Podcast featuring freedom fighters in faraway countries 2. Attract wider audience by more effective use of website, newsletter, and social media. 3. Strenghten our …

Tariffs Are Attacks on Property Rights and Freedom

By Per Bylund Rothbard wrote in the Libertarian Forum (v. 1, p. 184) that “… libertarians, if they have any personal philosophy beyond freedom from coercion, are supposed to be at the very least individualists.” Indeed, libertarianism holds high the rights and responsibilities of the sovereign individual: the right to self and to justly acquired property and thus the right not to be coerced or arbitrarily restricted; the responsibility for one’s own actions and the moral duty to respect and honor other individuals’ rights. Yet libertarianism, or at least a relatively large subset of proponents of libertarianism, has taken a strange collectivist turn in the recent years. This is evident in a number of issues, such as free trade, where libertarians used to be in agreement in principle, albeit not necessarily in all the details or the applications of those principles. In contrast, this new turn argues from a different starting point. Rather than the individual’s rights, the starting point for this group is instead a notion of the individual’s collective belonging and identity (such as one’s country or ethnicity). There has of course never been a problem for libertarians to recognize individuals for who they are, or choose to be, and thus within their preferred social and cultural context. No man is an island, and as social beings we are embedded in a context of community, culture, and tradition. The distinction between individualist and collectivist is not either-or, but which is primary: for collectivists, the individual is subjected to the will of the collective (or, in reality, the will of its leadership); for individualists, the collective has no right of its own but is subject to the individual’s choice to associate. For obvious reasons, the analysis of any state of affairs from a collectivist point of view is different than that …

Morocco Liberty Camp 2019

by Andy Eyschen The 3rd Morocco Liberty Camp, jointly organized by Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF), Language of Liberty Institute (LLI), and Chantier de Citoyennete (CDC) took place from 22 to 25 April 2019 at the same place as the first two in the beach resort town of Bouznika, half-way between the capital Rabat and the largest city Casablanca. The number of students this year was lower than usual at 16 due to exam times, 15 were from Morocco and one was from Congo Brazzaville, doing an Entrepreneurship course at a Moroccan University. The program this year focused mainly on “Liberal Values” and the political spectrum, plus Free Market Economics. FNF was represented by its Program Director for Senegal, Daouda Seck and its local coordinator Chaimae Bourjij. Country Manager Olaf Kellerhoff dropped by for a brief visit. LLI was represented by Andy Eyschen and CDC by Oussama Benhmida. The movie John Q, starring Denzel Washington, was screened to prompt a discussion on universal health care and how it should be financed.Most of the lectures were presented in French with the exception of the 4 LLI lectures done in English. A joint presentation on the political spectrum was done by Andy and Daouda and students were asked to identify the political values of various well-known political parties and pin them on a chart from extreme right to extreme left on the spectrum.  While the majority of students had not been previously exposed to classical liberalism, they all appreciated the idea of personal, political and economic freedoms and were highly skeptical of those exercising political power in Morocco today, making the link between power and corruption, not even excluding royalty, a controversial and potentially dangerous opinion to have in a country like Morocco. The quality of the students was above average despite the …

Seeking Sponsors for Liberty International World Conference Speakers

With some funding support, LI has an opportunity to bring additional excellent speakers to the conference in Mongolia. As LI operates on a very frugal budget we normally ask speakers to fund their own expenses with support from their institutions or universities. In some cases this is not possible. So we are reaching out to potential sponsors to assist these important people to our event. Their biographical information follows. Please review the extraordinary activity of these speakers and contact Ken Schoolland <[email protected]> or Jim Elwood <[email protected]> if you are willing to help them come, or donate directly here: Dr. Khalil Ahmad—Founder of Alternate Solutions Institute, Pakistan Khalil Ahmad, Dr. is a political economist and a political philosopher. He cherishes a cosmopolitan spirit and considers himself a moralist and a rationalist. He founded the first free market think tank in Pakistan, Alternate Solutions Institute. He wrote/published hundreds of articles on the various aspects of political economy of Pakistan, and on a variety of issues. He is author of a number of books that focus on the state, economy and politics of Pakistan.             Dr. Ahmad published six editions of Ken Schoolland’s book, The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible: A Free Market Odyssey, including 3 editions in Urdu, 2 editions in Sindhi, and an edition in Balochi. For his extraordinary work at the forefront of the liberty movement in a very challenging region of the world, Dr. Ahmad was given the Torch of Freedom Award by Liberty International at the Bali conference. Park, Jung Oh—North Korean Defector Mr. Park was born in 1968 in Hyesan, Yanggang Province, North Korea.  After graduating from The Communication College, Park worked at the Radio Wave Surveillance Station from 1993 to 1998 as a supervisor. He continued his education at Yanggang University, where he graduated with a degree …

Apply now for Freedom Week!

We’re excited to announce that students can now apply for Freedom Week: an annual, one-week seminar in August on classical liberal and free market thinking, held by the Adam Smith Institute and the Institute of Economic Affairs, in the University of Cambridge. Freedom Week is completely free–with food, accommodation, tuition and materials all covered–and is aimed at students who are interested, but relatively new to, classical liberal ideas.  Freedom Week-ers spend the week immersed in talks from some of Britain’s leading liberal thinkers. But Freedom Week isn’t only about hearing from best of classical liberal academia, it’s also about spending time with dozens of like-minded people who share an interest in economics, political science, history and more. Find out more and apply! https://www.freedom-week.org/apply