The beginning of this jam-packed week featured an exciting Monday morning in the office. After a weekend of vivacious articles published by the FEE team, website traffic was high, and everyone was in fantastic spirits. Office discussion revolved around the upcoming Freedom Fest, along with reviewing the success of FEE’s recent student events in Georgia. During working hours, I encountered and dealt with several publications by writers such as Murray Rothbard and Hans F. Sennholz, along with previous issues of The Freeman Magazine. Complementing these experiences were a series of stimulating conversations with Jason and Max of FEE’s digital development team concerning the ethics of government intervention and dynamism of the ‘right/left’ political spectrum.
The fantastic start to the week continued bright and early on Thursday morning. I made my way to the airport and caught a flight to Las Vegas to attend Freedom Fest with several other North American Mannkal scholars.
Amongst vibrant conversations involving our internship experiences thus far, the group revelled in the knowledge of many of the festival’s speakers and attendees. The range of seminars I attended spanned from Jeffery Tucker’s passionate insight into American fascism to Chris Casey’s outlook on bond investing to Anthem Blanchard’s dissection of crypto-currencies.
Another highlight of Freedom Fest included the Rand Paul luncheon of which helped elucidate my understanding of his political journey and classical liberalist tendencies. Being an economics student, it was also invigorating to hear (and meet!) one of my inspirations in George Gilder. George is the co-founder of the Discovery Foundation and author of the monumental ‘Wealth and Poverty’ in 1981; he spoke fervently on the value of currency and the brilliance of Bitcoin’s block-chain technology.
Needless to say, Freedom Fest provided a fantastic environment for us all to further our understanding of the applicability of libertarian thought in society whilst mingling with some of the most innovative minds contributing to the discussion today.
Aside from time spent at the conference, visiting Las Vegas’ attractions also advanced the weekend’s enjoyment and helped foster bonds amongst the North American Mannkal scholars. We visited sights including the Bellagio Fountains, Stratosphere, Fremont Street, and explored the multiplicity of themed casinos. My favourite moment of tourism, however, was found in an awe-filled climax to the weekend. Michael McKenzie, Chad Bensky, and I had the opportunity to undertake a road-trip to the Grand Canyon! Along the way, we visited Hoover Dam, the beginning of Route 66, as well as the towns of Boulder City and Kingman. It superseded all of our expectations and provided an opportunity to reflect on what had been a particularly enjoyable (and educational!) last few days.
All in all, the past week across Georgia, Nevada, and Arizona has been magnificent. My sincere thanks must go out to Ron and the team at Mannkal for allowing me to have such an opportunity to ascertain more knowledge on public policy and the free-market.
I am now about to board my flight back to Atlanta for what I am sure will be another exuberant week. Stay tuned!