Thursday, August 03, 2006

weekend of liberty!

So this past weekend was the sixth annual Liberty Summer Seminar, and it was amazing, for those of you who were silly enough to not attend.
(For a taste of the action, check out some photos I took that Peter was kind enough to upload for easy viewing... but check soon, before it's not just my photos, and then check back to see more.)

As for appearances, there were old favourites aplenty - between Jan Narveson and Ezra Levant of the Western Standard's annual appearances, Pierre Desrochers gave his talk on the invisible hand and its green thumb, though it was a bit more relaxed at LSS than I've seen it in the past. And how could we forget MARV?

Jan's talk this LSS was on property rights, rather than just principles of liberty (which is the talk I've seen him give in the past.) Ezra, while he's more of a conservative than a libertarian, is so damn entertaining that I don't think anyone really cares.

There were plenty of new appearances this weekend, too - my personal favourites were Danielle Smith of the Alberta Property Rights Initiative and, of course, Mike Walker of the Fraser Institute. Maybe it was the fact that they both used anecdotal evidence to back up their points, or maybe it was the fact that they both just kicked so much ass, but I still get enthused thinking about their presence at this year's LSS. I got to sit and talk with Danielle Smith during a torrential downpour (no worries, there was a tent) and stand and talk with Mike Walker after singing and dancing with him to Brown Eyed Girl at around 2am. (What the hell? I know. It was awesome.)

Another highlight was Scott Reid (the good one, not beer-and-popcorn Scott Reid). Not only did he stay for the entire seminar, rather than showing up just for his talk (something I wasn't expecting of an MP) but he seemed genuinely concerned about the freedom of Canadians. When he mentioned breaking the party line to vote to help protect Canadian privacy I had no qualms about backing up Peter Jaworski's applause.

The announcement of creation of The Institute for Liberal Studies - an organization to educate about and encourage the spread of liberty in Canada - was also exciting for me, as it's a project that we've been working on for a little while now, and it was great to see the reception it got from the crowd this weekend.

(For anyone upset about the name, click on the link. "Liberalism is an ideology, philosophical view, and political tradition which holds that liberty is the primary political value." (Wiki) It's not just a political party, you know.)

Lindy also gave an amazing performance on Saturday night. Great original songs and covers, plus he kept us all laughing. I haven't been that entertained in a long time - we'll definitely make the trek out to see him next time we can and he's in Windsor.

I suppose I could go on and on about how great the other speakers, company, hosts, food, etc. were, but I'll cut it off here. Stay tuned for LSS video so you can catch up on all the awesomeness you missed out on this past weekend.

Can't wait for next year.


P. M. Jaworski said...

Awesome recap, Janet. I particularly like your link to the "liberal" from wikipedia. I suspect it would be a good idea to engage some folks in a debate about that title. I think I want to blog about it, and see what Cherniak thinks of it...

Stephen Taylor said...

I suppose we're even now... ;)

Andrew said...

Interestingly, Scott Reid also links to his "How'd They Vote" and wikipedia entries from his official site.

He's a guy who's proud of his record, and rightfully so.

Kerry said...

I wish I'd been able to make it... sounds like it was a great time.

Also, I think a lot of people forget that the Liberal Party of old (early 20th century) was also in favour of free trade and clearly more deserving of its name than its modern counterpart.