On Sunday, the Free Liberal hosted a forum on the role of economists in shaping policy and what the effect the upcoming election will have on macropolicy. Our panelists were J. Bradley Jansen, Director, Center for Financial Privacy and Human Rights, Prof. Garett Jones, BB&T Professor for the Study of Capitalism at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, and Paul J. Gessing, president of the Rio Grande Foundation, a New Mexico free-market think tank.
We asked the panelists to transcend mere man-on-street, off-the-cuff predictioneering and to help us to think systematically about the relationships between economists, politics, policy choices, and real world outcomes: How do free-market economists and classical liberals think about the possible outcomes of the upcoming election and the role of economists in relation to political organizations such as the Tea Party and the two major parties?
Do libertarians who listen to the advice of liberal economists play a role akin to the kingmakers such as the Liberal Democrats in the UK and the FDP in Germany?
How does this dynamic inform the policies that will be chosen by the new government? What will the effects on policies on immigration, defense, and financial markets be?
Participants in our roundtable included graduate students at GMU. policy professionals, and independent scholars. Daniel Kuehn, a researcher at Urban Institute, has blogged about his experience at the forum here, and his subsequent thoughts about liberalism and libertarianism here.