At this Policy Forum, Independent Institute Senior Fellow Alvaro Vargas Llosa, former Bolivian President Jorge Quiroga, economist William Easterly, and a group of policy experts discuss the findings of the book, Lessons from the Poor. The speakers examine real-world examples of entrepreneurship and why instead of redistributing existing wealth, governments should free people so that they can create it.
Richard K. Vedder and Ken Jacobs debate whether the rise of Walmart and similar big box retailers have been beneficial or harmful to the US economy.
Richard K. Vedder is Senior Fellow at The Independent Institute and Edwin and Ruth Kennedy Distinguished Professor of Economics and Faculty Associate, Contemporary History Institute, Ohio University. Professor Vedder is co-author (with Lowell Gallaway) of The Independent Institute book, "Out of Work," the recipient of both the Sir Antony Fisher International Memorial Award and Mencken Award Finalist for Best Book, and the Institute monograph, Can Teachers Own Their Own Schools?
Ken Jacobs is Chair of the U.C. Berkeley Labor Center, and a former member of the Mayors Universal Health Care Council in San Francisco. He is the Co-author od Declining Job-Based Health Coverage for Working Families in California and the United States, and Hidden Costs of Wal-Mart Jobs.
David J. Theroux is Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Independent Institute and Publisher of The Independent Review.
Why has Africa, despite its rich history, cultures, and abundant resources, largely remained in the grip of dictatorship, starvation, genocide and war? How can this tragic legacy of colonialism, socialism, and plutocracy be replaced with the welfare of economic liberalization, individual rights, and the Rule of Law? Based on his new book, "Africa in Chaos," award-winning economist George Ayittey will examine the record of American statism and the revolution for free-market societies.
George B. N. Ayittey
Professor of Economics, American University
Author, Africa in Chaos and Africa Betrayed
David J. Theroux
Founder and President, The Independent Institute
With California's current economic despair, how will we get the economy out of its rut? With compelling portraits of those who defy convention to originate the products that fire a growing economy, George Gilder will deliver an ardent message: People must be free as entrepreneurs to innovate and create new wealth through market-based enterprises which benefit everyone.
More than any other nation, America has benefited from entrepreneurial freedom. But whereas in the 1980s, the "Forbes 400" of wealthiest people experienced it's biggest turnover ever, going into the 1990s, our growth and prosperity appear to have stalled.
High tax rates, regulations, and runaway liability today are stifling such progress, especially for the very poor. Chosen not by blood, credentials, education, or service to the establishment, entrepreneurs succeed by performance alone. for service to consumers. Henry Ford, Sam Walton, Steve Wozniak, Soichiro Honda, William Hewlett & David Packard, Sony's Akio Morita, and Bill Gates all began in the "skunk works" of their trades. All had to stoop to conquer, and they embody the entrepreneur whose worth is retained only through constant work and satisfying the customers.
George Glider will demonstrate how we can recapture this essential spirit of enterprise. If entrepreneurs are freed and allowed to rise up and meet the challenges of the future, America and California will once again become first by serving others.