Home » News » Liberty + Leadership News: May 7, 2020

Liberty + Leadership News: May 7, 2020


We hope you enjoy these top news stories about TFAS activities, alumni and events this week. Please visit us on social media for additional up-to-the-moment TFAS news and information and sign up to receive weekly updates.

TFAS alumni, staff and faculty continue to provide coverage of COVID-19. Read their analysis, information and tips by visiting this week’s “Quick Links.”

Virtual Programs Reach High School Teachers at Home with Timely Economic Lessons on COVID-19

Teachers during seminar
Teachers negotiate a trade of lollipops during a seminar on international trade. Whether trained in-person or online, teachers bring these lessons back to their high school students. FTE-trained teachers impact an estimated 200,000 or more students annually.

As COVID-19 continues to disrupt the traditional high school classroom, TFAS and our Foundation for Teaching Economics (FTE) programs are meeting demand for both remote learning and information on the impact of COVID-19 by offering online teacher programs that examine the crisis and response through the lens of economic reasoning. The response has been strong.

More than 250 tuned in to our webinar for teachers on the economic implications of COVID-19, and increased demand has caused us to double the number of online programs available for high school teachers this year. With extensive experience in online courses and virtual resources for teachers, our team is uniquely qualified to offer engaging and innovative programming through proven online learning platforms.

To learn more about these initiatives, visit TFAS.org/C19FTELessons.

TFAS Faculty Book Recommendations

As closures from COVID-19 continue to keep us operating remotely, TFAS is providing more ways for alumni, students and supporters to connect virtually while continuing to be life-long learners. This week, we again asked our world-class faculty to share the books they think the TFAS community should pick up during these unusual times.

Dr. Richard Boyd, professor of American Political Thought, for our D.C. Summer and Semester Programs, recommends “Invisible Man” by Ralph Ellison. “It’s a philosophical book about freedom—about what it means to live a free life, about the relationship between freedom and responsibility, and about whether freedom involves participation in government or a kind of apolitical hibernation,” says Boyd.

Visit TFAS.org/BookRecs2 for the full list of faculty book suggestions.

Dr. Anne Bradley discusses the TFAS curriculum during our 2018 Annual Conference in New Orleans.

TFAS Academic Director to Present How Creativity Will Solve COVID-19 at Freedom Seminar

Dr. Anne Bradley, the TFAS George and Sally Mayer Fellow for Economic Education and Academic Director, will join Northwood University for their Annual Freedom Seminar. Dr. Bradley’s virtual session on May 14 will discuss how the creativity of entrepreneurs, big and small, will solve COVID-19. Dr. Bradley spoke on the same topic on our TFAS “Liberty + Leadership” Podcast in March. You can listen to it below.

Economics Lesson of the Week: Property Rights – Is the Environment Different?

As the spread of COVID-19 causes high schools across the country to close their doors, TFAS is providing resources to help our teachers and parents continue the important task of educating our nation’s future leaders. Each week, we’ll feature a different lesson from our high school programming division – the Foundation for Teaching Economics (FTE).

This week’s lesson is “Property Rights: Is the Environment Different?” In this lesson, students apply the tools of economic analysis to environmental problems. Through the analysis of historical and contemporary environmental problems, students discover the value of looking at environmental issues as problems of incentives and institutions rather than blaming them on “bad people doing bad things.”

Downloadable lesson guides and slides provide instructions. TFAS offers a plethora of online lesson plans, readings, handouts, video demonstrations and hands-on activity guides to teach the “economic way of thinking” in engaging and relatable ways. Visit TFAS.org/FTELessons for a one-stop guide to our available resources.


TFAS Alumni + Friends Cover COVID-19 Concerns

Robert Bellafiore Jr., PPF ’19, a current TFAS Public Policy Fellow, says headlines predicting a “progressive youthquake” are premature in an article published in The Hill entitled, “Will COVID-19 radicalize young people forever? Don’t count on it.”

In my own experience, as a participant in The Fund for American Studies’ Public Policy Fellowship, I have participated in seminars where young people are excited to debate the legacy of our Founding Fathers, the nature of statesmanship, and the roots of the ideas so many of us take for granted today. As these classmates go on to careers in government and academia, they will shape the future as surely as any progressive will. Of course, conservatives can’t predict the future — and that’s the point. We simply can’t know what tomorrow will bring, which is why debates about underlying philosophy and values are so important.” – Robert Bellafiore Jr., PPF ’19 in The Hill

Bellafiore warns against generational stereotypes that brush too much under the rug and make grand projections about the future ideals of the largest generation in U.S. history. “Will the popular predictions come true? It’s up to the next generation of conservatives, engaged in an honest dialogue with our fellow millennials and Gen Zers, to ensure that they do not,” he writes. Read his full piece in The Hill.

Illinois state senator and TFAS alumnus, Dan McConchie ’93, ’95, was published in Friday’s edition of The Wall Street Journal urging for limits to be placed on governors’ emergency powers. McConchie filed a bill in the Illinois Senate to limit such powers in his state. You can read about his bill in The Center Square.

TFAS Trustee Paula Dobriansky also appeared in Friday’s edition of The Wall Street Journal, opining that the U.S. and its allies can band together to depend less on China and solve supply chain and regional security issues.

TFAS trustee emeritus and Purdue University president, Mitch Daniels, appeared on Good Morning America to discuss plans to reopen Purdue’s campus this fall.

Jennifer Kabbany, Novak ’02, shares results of a recent College Fix poll indicating that 79% of college students believe the quality of their education has declined amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

Rym Momtaz ‘05, ‘07 co-wrote a piece in Politico about China’s aggressive propaganda efforts in Europe to criticize Western democracies for their handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tim Carney, Novak ’03, opines for the Washington Examiner on local governments’ opposition to lifting the grocery bag tax despite the risk of reusable shopping bags spreading COVID-19.

Kat Timpf, Novak ’12, discusses coping mechanisms during the coronavirus lockdown in an interview with National Review.

Kristin Tate, Novak ’19, opines for The Hill on how the coronavirus pandemic has revealed how politicians are managing the national debt.

Ben Nuelle ’14 reports for Agri-Pulse on potential road maintenance delays in states as gas tax revenues continue to decline due to the coronavirus shutdown.

TFAS Regent Emeritus Dr. Lee Edwards opines for The Daily Signal on the history of the Chinese government’s lies.

Ryan Lovelace, Novak ’17, discusses how government efforts to combat the coronavirus have been hindered by technology issues in The Washington Times.

Kaitlin Durbin ’11 shares experts’ opinions of potential coronavirus immunity in a piece for The Blade.

Robby Soave, Novak ’17, opines for Reason on a recent statement by the mayor of Chicago that violators of social distancing guidelines will be arrested.

Mene Ukueberuwa, Novak ’19, discusses risks associated with investing in COVID-19 cures in an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal.

Sarah Westwood, Novak ’15, says meat processing plants are struggling to balance government pressure to stay operational with worker safety in a piece for CNN politics.

Matthew Walther, Novak ’10, opines for The Week on the media’s response to President Trump’s recent comments about disinfectants.

Katherine Mangu-Ward, Novak ’05, discusses Bastiat’s “broken window fallacy” and the economic impact of the COVID-19 outbreak in a piece for Reason.



Oliver Roberts, Law ’19, proposes a bipartisan approach to higher education reform that “lowers tuition costs, reduces student loan debt, expands college opportunities for high schoolers, and comes without raising additional taxes.” Read about his proposed “Degree-in-Three Reform” in News Day and the LI Herald.

Matthew Continetti, Novak ’08, opines for the Washington Free Beacon on the new ESPN documentary, “The Last Dance” and how it illustrates the place of the 1990s in world history.

Joe Duggan ’75 writes for American Greatness about Ola Hawatmeh, a conservative Republican politician seeking to represent New York state’s 19th congressional district in Congress.

Tim Alberta, Novak ’18, discussed possibilities for the upcoming 2020 election with four former Republican campaign managers in an interview for Politico.

TFAS Director of Journalism + Communications and U.S. Programs, Joe Starrs, will be featured in a documentary by Stephen Oldfield ’85 premiering at Anthem Film Festival during “FreedomFest” this summer.

Oriana Pawlyk ’10 writes for Business Insider on the Air Force’s cost-effective move to save jet fuel by adjusting aircraft windshield wipers.

Peter Suderman, Novak ’10, interviewed economist Michael Strain about the state of the economy (before the 2020 coronavirus stock market crash) in a Q&A for Reason.

Georgios Panos ’02 has been named a Best 40 Under 40 MBA Professor for his work at the University of Glasgow Adam Smith Business School.


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