Spring 2010

Spring 2010

Wednesday, February 24, 2010 5:15 to 6:45 p.m.
Lecture 1 of 3
Engineering 189
Debate: Should the Government Fix the Financial Crisis?
Co-Sponsored by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute
Barry Eichengreen, the George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Political Science, University of California Berkeley
Gary Wolfram, William E. Simon Professor of Economics and Public Policy, Hillsdale College

Financial markets have experienced a meltdown that has lead to the deepest recession since the 1930's Great Depression. Many have called for government intervention in the financial markets to stabilize falling asset values and the failing balance sheets of many of the nation's largest financial and insurance institutions. These critics maintain that government must rescue those institutions deemed "too big to fail" and must provide a new regulatory regime that prevents these institutions from engaging in too much risk. Supporters of unhindered markets, on the other hand, suggest that existing government regulation was a root cause of the failure, that bailouts have created a moral hazard encouraging more risk, and that further regulation will only make financial markets more inefficient and unpredictable. Please join us as two well-respected economists elaborate these opposing views.

Professor Barry Eichengreen is the George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Political Science, University of California, Berkeley where he has taught since 1987. He is a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research and a Senior Fellow of the Centre for Economic Policy Research. He is also a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is the author of several books including Labor in the Era of Globalization, co-edited with Clair Brown and Michael Reich, Globalizing Capital: A history of the International Monetary System, as well as many others. He has been recognized as an outstanding teacher at U.C. Berkeley and writes a monthly column for Project Syndicate.

Professor Gary Wolfram is the William E. Simon Professor of Economics and Public Policy and the George Munson Professor of Political Economy at Hillsdale College in Michigan. He is also President of the Hillsdale Policy Group, a consulting firm specializing in taxation and policy analysis. He serves as the treasurer of the Board of Trustees of Lake SuperiorState University and previously served as chairman. Professor Wolfram has broad interests in Michigan, having served on various boards and commissions around the state. His publications include Towards a Free Society: An Introduction to Markets and the Political System and several works on Michigan's tax structure and other public policy issues. He received Hillsdale College's Professor of the Year Award and provides policy analysis in Michigan's political area.

Note: there is no recording available for this event

Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Lecture 2 of 3
Morris Dailey Auditorium
"Globalization in Historical Perspective"
Stephen Davies
Program Officer at the Institute for Humane Studies

Globalization is a central theme in disciplines as varied as economics, cultural studies, philosophy and political science. Who benefits from globalization? How is globalization spread? Who loses? These questions are more tractable when globalization is viewed from an historical perspective. Historical perspective leads to a better understanding of the nature of the globalization, its process and consequences.

A historian, Dr. Stephen Davies graduated from St Andrews University in Scotland in 1976 and gained his PhD from the same institution in 1984. He was a Senior Lecturer in the Department of History and Economic History at Manchester Metropolitan University. He has also been a Visiting Scholar at the Social Philosophy and Policy Center at Bowling Green State University. Dr. Davies has recently joined the Institute for Humane Studies where he works on the Institute's educational programs, teaches at summer seminars, liaises with the IHS faculty network, and provides academic career advice to students.

He is author of several books including Empiricism and History (Palgrave Macmillan, 2003) and of several articles and essays on topics including the private provision of public goods and the history of crime and criminal justice. He has recently completed a book on the history of the world since 1250 and the origins of modernity. Among his other interests are science fiction and the fortunes of Manchester City Football (soccer) Club.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010 5:15 to 6:45 p.m.
Lecture 3 of 3
Morris Dailey Auditorium
"Money Mischief and the March to Centralization"
Lawrence Reed, President of the Foundation for Economic Education

With regulation over air, energy, health, banks, wages, cars, credit cards, and the price of carry-on luggage running rampant, it is time to consider Hayek's warning that mankind really knows very little about what we imagine we can design. What are the limits to design? Can order generated without design, "far outstrip the plans men consciously contrive"? To examine these questions, Lawrence Reed provides an historical overview of the process and outcomes of attempts to design Monetary Policy. Monetary policy from the inception of the federal government has been politicized and erratic. Starting with an ill-conceived effort at bimetallism, Washington moved on to experiment with fiat paper, monometallism and a hybrid of the two. There can be little doubt about where the sequence of designs and redesigns has endedÑcentralization of monetary power, enormous discretion for monetary authorities and a currency worth a fraction of what it once could purchase. Before designing new policies, it is advisable to reflect on the historical record. This lecture is ideal for Finance, Political Science, History and Economics majors.

Lawrence W. (Larry) Reed has reported on hyperinflation in South America, black markets behind the Iron Curtain, and the recent stunning developments in Eastern Europe. Among many foreign adventures, Reed visited the ravaged nation of Cambodia in 1989 with his late friend, Academy Award winner Dr. Haing S. Ngor; recorded an authentic native voodoo ceremony in a remote region of Haiti in 1987; traveled with the Polish anti-communist underground for which he was arrested and detained by border police in 1986; interviewed presidents and cabinet officials in half a dozen nations; spent time with the contra rebels during the Nicaraguan civil war; and lived for two weeks with the rebels of Mozambique at their bush headquarters in 1991, at the height of that country's devastating civil war. In the past twenty-five years, he has authored over 1,000 newspaper, magazine, and journal articles, as well as five books. His articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, USA Today, Baltimore Sun, Detroit News and Detroit Free Press, among many others. Reed's most recent book is Striking the Root: Essays on Liberty.

In 2008, Reed assumed the presidency of the Foundation for Economic Education in Irvington, New York. He served as President of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Michigan for its first two decades, and remains President Emeritus. Reed holds a B.A. degree in Economics from Grove City College (1975) and an M.A. degree in History from Slippery Rock State University (1978), both in Pennsylvania. Reed has been awarded two honorary doctorates and Grove City College's "Distinguished Alumni Award."