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Libertarians are a persistent community. Ever since we started developing theories about free markets, non-aggression, and human flourishing, we have necessarily been interested in how we get from here to there. While our end goals are vital to flesh out and understand, what’s the point if they’re never realized? What’s all this for if we never get free?

different-theories-of-social-changeIt seems then, that libertarians need theories of social change. We need ideas about how to achieve a free society. Many libertarians have historically turned to political institutions as a force for change. Libertarians spend lots of time working on political rallying, campaigning, voting, and public policy analysis and proposals. I believe these efforts are well intentioned and the right line of work for many passionate, politically oriented people (you should do what you love, not what is “socially beneficial”). But in terms of pragmatic accounts of social change, I think politics is simply a bad means to achieve liberty.

We must not ignore the reasons for supporting our ends in talking about our means. If there is conceptual tension between your means and your ends, you’ve got a problem. Rationality demands that some kind of adjustment is necessary to bring your ends and means into cohesive alignment. While it may seem obvious that the way to decrease the size and scope of the state is to elect leaders who will do that, I think a deeper analysis reveals that the idea of state driven social change through political action rests upon a logic completely at odds with libertarianism. There is conceptual tension between our means and ends. (more…)

freedom-fest-emailerSteve Forbes. Grover Norquist. Peter Thiel. These are the great minds you have the chance to see at FreedomFest for free thanks to SFL. Due to high demand, I’m excited to announce that the application deadline for SFL’s FreedomFest scholarship has been extended to this Friday, March 22nd! Put your name in now for the chance to spend a summer weekend with SFL in sunny Las Vegas!

Besides the speakers I’ve already mentioned, FreedomFest will include an action-packed lineup of events including a debate between Wall Street Journal columnist Stephen Moore and notorious Keynesian economist Paul Krugman. Plus, John Stossel will be filming an episode of his Fox Business show with guest Steve Wynn, the real estate mogul responsible for developing the “new” Las Vegas. Also, the Federal Reserve will be put “on trial” in a moot court debate you won’t want to miss.

Click here for full details of the scholarship plus the application, and I just might see you July 8-11 in the freest city in the US.

Bryan CaplanSFL is pleased to announce a new Virtual Reading Group: “The Case for Open Borders” facilitated by Prof. Bryan Caplan in three Wednesday sessions from June 3rd to 17th. SFL Virtual Reading Groups operate like Liberty Fund symposia, in which participants are given a list of readings on the intellectual underpinnings of a free society and are then given the opportunity to share their own thoughts on the readings with each other. By creating a space for active discussion with other intellectually engaged students, led by capable and informed discussion leaders, VRGs give participants a unique chance to truly delve into a text in ways they might not have been able to on their own.

 

Apply by Wednesday, May 27

“The Case for Open Borders”

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freedom-fest-emailer

You read that right. The deadline to apply for one of SFL’s scholarships to FreedomFest is 12:00 PM ET. So, put your name in now! Here’s a little bit more about the scholarship from the application page:

FreedomFest is an annual festival where “free minds meet” to celebrate great books, great ideas, and great thinkers in an open-minded society. With speakers such as John Allison, Steve Forbes, Grover Norquist, and Doug Casey, the conference is packed with leaders of liberty speaking to inspire and educate attendees. The theme for FreedomFest this year will be “Can we Restore the American Dream?”

The purpose of this scholarship is to provide students with an opportunity to develop your leadership skills, network with activists in the liberty movement, and provide training and experience in running events for liberty. Recipients who are awarded a scholarship will have their registration to FreedomFest and lodging at Planet Hollywood covered by SFL. We’ll also be providing a $100 flight stipend to folks who need help booking their travel to Las Vegas. All other expenses will be the responsibility of the attendee.

You won’t want to miss this opportunity while it’s still available. Click here to apply now.

now-hiring

Students For Liberty is seeking a dynamic and strategically minded individual to be our next North America Programs Director. The position will be responsible for overseeing SFL’s student programs in the United States and Canada. These programs include leadership training (such as our Campus Coordinator Program and North American Executive Board), events (our fall regional conferences and year-round leadership forums), and resource distribution to our student network. North America is our core market and we are looking for an individual with the vision and dedication to grow the student movement for liberty in the region.

Responsibilities include:

  • Oversee the planning, execution, and evaluation of SFL’s student programs in North America
  • Design and execute an annual business plan for North America programs that will grow the student movement for liberty in a cost-effective manner
  • Maintain, monitor and communicate the state of North America programs
  • Instill a sense of accountability among team members by modeling tight oversight of individual and organization performance standards
  • Work with staff to evaluate North America programs against organization performance measurements
  • Recruit, hire, and oversee growth of North America programs staff

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