Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Time-Sensitive Call to Support Liberty and Free Trade

In last night's E-Leadership webinar, the question was raised, "What activities can you give group members to make them feel important and doing meaningful work?" While the typical answers are to flier the campus or host social events, I'm writing to both request a favor and give you another activity for your group to perform that can get many members actively involved.

The Atlas Economic Research Foundation (and Tom Palmer in particular, who you probably already know) is spearheading a Free Trade Petition that they plan to unveil at the upcoming G20 Summit on April 1st. With the current economic crisis and efforts by many governments to enact protectionist regulations. This "is a part of a much broader campaign that will be mobilized around the world to alert the public to the dangers of attempts to block trade and to revive positive efforts toward increasing freedom of trade." Atlas has called upon our help for this petition. While there have already been hundreds of signatories to the petition including many notable public figures, your role as a student leader has the potential to launch this this petition dramatically.

First, please forward this petition to your list-serve and encourage members to sign it. The petition only takes a philosophical opposition to government intervention in the free economic transitions between individuals of different countries, a position that should be readily acceptable.

Second, and more importantly, I am writing to ask that you organize members of your group to get economics professors at your school to sign the petition. Here is what this would involve: Have members of your group print out a copy of the petition and the web link to sign it online (, or Find a list of your school's economics professors and any other professor who you think would be sympathetic to these ideas, and divy it up amongst members. Send your members to meet with the professors in person during office hours or whenever they're available and ask the professors to sign the petition online (note, they need to do so online for it to register) before April 1st so the petition has as many signatories as possible. If you send your group's members in teams of 2, it's a bonding experience, while at the same time letting professors know about your group's existence and promoting a worthwhile cause that has the potential to advance liberty around the world.

If you have any questions about this, please let me know. I would also appreciate it if you can let me know if you can do this or not. Even asking just a handful of econ professors who you think would be open to the petition would be helpful. I strongly encourage you to take part in this opportunity as students around the world will be joining in on this effort.

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