NYC Junto Newsletter
written by Iris Bell on June 30, 2015
Junto focuses on free markets, Objectivism and investing. It’s a group that shares information, discusses current issues and presents speakers.
July 2, Oxford-style debate: Thomas Donnelly Christopher Preble
Sustaining American security, freedom, and prosperity will require a greater assertion of geopolitical leadership and military power.
Admission free — no reservation necessary
* We’ll socialize from 7:00pm to 7:30pm
* 7:30pm moderator, Gene Epstein calls first for announcements of things happening before the next Junto. Then he asks for other announcements and for people to introduce themselves.
* The debate begins promptly at 8:00pm.
* Discussions are intense but polite.
* The meeting will continue to 10:00pm or later.
General Society Library
20 West 44 Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues, NYC
near the Grand Central Terminal
* Junto meets on the first Thursday of every month
* Participation by all attendees is highly encouraged.
* 70 to 150 people attend most Junto meetings.
Oxford-style debate: Thomas Donnelly and Christopher Preble,
“Sustaining American security, freedom, and prosperity will require a greater assertion of geopolitical leadership and military power”
Donnelly takes the positive. He’s defense, security policy analyst, American Enterprise Institute. Co-author with Frederick W. Kagan “Of Lessons for a Long War: How America can win on new battlefields.” Author “Ground Truth: The future of U.S. land power, co-author
“Of Men and Materiel: The crisis in military resources,” co-editor “The Military We Need: Operation Iraqi Freedom: A strategic assessment.” 1995-1999 policy group director, professional staff member House Committee on Armed Services. Member U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.
Former editor Armed Forces Journal, Army Times and Defense News. His site here.
Preble, vice president defense, foreign policy studies Cato Institute.
Author “The Power Problem: How American military dominance makes us less safe, less prosperous and less free,” “John F. Kennedy and the Missile Gap.” Co-edited “A Dangerous World? Threat perception and U.S. national security,” “Terrorizing Ourselves: Why U.S. counterterrorism policy is failing and how to fix it.”
Has articles in NY Times, LA Times, Financial Times and Foreign Policy. Teaches U.S. Foreign Policy elective at University of California, Washington Center (UCDC). Taught history St. Cloud State and Temple Universities. He was commissioned officer U.S. Navy, onboard USS Ticonderoga (CG-47). Ph.D. history Temple University. His blog is here.
* Junto meeting Thursday, June 4, 2015
* Junto speakers through December 2015
* NEW Cronyism the Morality of Sound Money, July 13
* NEW Cato U., Seminar Political Economy, July 26 – 31
* NEW NYC Ayn Rand Meetup, Sunday, July 26, 3:00pm
* NEW Liberty Forum, Freedom Dinner, NYC, Nov. 11 – 12
* NEW Germany used hate-speech laws against Nazis, 1920s 30s
* NEW Mark Steyn explains climate change with facts, humor
* NEW Can there be an “after Socialism”? by Alan Charles Kors
* NEW “Free Speech vs. Religion,” draw Muhammad contest
* NEW NY Times didn’t learn from population bomb fizzle
* NEW What’s so selfish about capitalism? by Barry Loberfeld
* NEW “Innovationism:” rise of past few hundred years
* NEW Kaizen review, Center for Ethics Entrepreneurship
* NEW Chief Justice Roberts — the 60th vote in the Senate
* NEW Andy George — January 24, 1955 to May 4, 2015
* Free market Objectivist local meetings, sites, podcasts
* Fred Cookinham’s five Ayn Rand walking tours
* Read and post to Junto sites
* About Junto and this Junto newsletter
* Junto’s audio podcasts since May 2014 here.
Listen here to the June 4, 2015 Junto. Janine R. Wedel on her book “Unaccountable: How elite power brokers corrupt our finances, freedom, and security” here.
* The Junto Forum, read and post.
* Visit Junto’s site for information on current and past speakers, listen to podcasts, read previous newsletters and to sign up for the Junto e-newsletter here.
* Visit Junto on Facebook.
* Follow Junto on Twitter.
Junto’s founder and host is Victor Niederhoffer.
Visit his site here.
Feel free to use the above text to promote Junto among free marketers, Objectivists and investors.
Come to Junto, meet these upcoming speakers:
August 6, Tyler Cowen, economics professor George Mason University, director Mercatus Center. He’s spoken at Junto more than any other speaker. He blogs daily here.
September 3, Adrian Bejan inventor of constructal law. On his book, “Design in Nature: How the constructal law governs evolution in biology, physics, technology, & social organizations.” His background and awards here. He says this is the easiest explanation of constructal law here.
October 1, Oxford-style debate: Richard A. Epstein and Michael Huemer “A government that performs its fundamental functions is preferable to a system of anarcho-capitalism in which these functions are privatized.
Epstein takes positive. Law professor NY University and University of Chicago. Read his tweets.
Huemer takes negative. Professor philosophy University of Colorado, Boulder. Author of “The Problem of Political Authority: An examination of the right to coerce and the duty to obey. Visit his site here.
November 5, Victor Niederhoffer on new principles of speculation, with his collaborator Ayaka Kinoshita singer, songwriter from Japan, see her here.
December 3 Oxford-style debate: Gene Epstein and an opponent to be announced. “Causes of the 2008 financial crisis.” He’s Junto’s moderator, the economics editor and books editor of Barron’s – the weekly business magazine.
Cronyism and the Morality of Sound Money, free, Mon., July 13
Atlas Network presents panel, Jared Meyer of Manhattan Institute, William Luther of Sound Money Project and Sean Fieler of American Principles Project.
It is commonly accepted that governments, and therefore central banks, should not pick favorites, but the Fed’s discretionary monetary policies do just that. Money is a moral matter; its trustworthiness impacts the value of wages, savings and investments of all Americans.
Reception, hors d’oeuvres, open bar, 6:00pm. Panel 6:45pm to 7:30pm. Closing reception. Penn Club of NY, 30 West 44 Street.
Open to all, bring a guest, forward invitation to friends. For info or RSVP with names of guests by Tuesday, July 7, here.
Cato University, Summer Seminar Political Economy, July 26 – 31
Premier DC educational event of the year. Brings together outstanding faculty and participants from across the country and globe. Sharing a commitment to liberty and learning. Like-minded people, a spectacular vacation, sharing ideas on how to advance and defend liberty, free-markets, individual rights and intruding government.
Speakers include: Randy Barnett, John Tierney, Amity Shlaes, Jeffrey Miron, Robert McDonald, Tom G. Palmer.
Information, registration, scholarships here.
NYC Ayn Rand Meetup, Sunday, July 26, 3:00pm
As always, we’ll talk about Ayn Rand, her works, challenges, Objectivist life, options, associations and knowledge. Give and take, open to all, no charge, no reservations. It’s on the last Sunday of each month.
It’s at The Midtown Restaurant, 155 East 55 Street, between 3rd and Lexington Avenues, mid-block on the north side of 55th Street, in Manhattan, free.
There are about two dozen people at each Meetup. Benny Pollack, Ayn Rand Meetup organizer, says: “Join our group of regular Objectivists for a lively discussion on topics related to Ayn Rand and Objectivist philosophy in general.
“Please join us. If you are already versed in the topic, want to learn or just want to spend an intellectually stimulating afternoon, please come. I hope to see you all there.”
Get up-to-date information here.
Liberty Forum and Freedom Dinner, NYC, Nov. 11 – 12
For more than 3 decades, Atlas Network has lead in building an international network of free-market think tanks. To strengthen worldwide freedom movement by identifying, training and supporting individuals with the potential to found and develop effective independent organizations. 460 partner organizations in over 95 countries work to move public policy discussions toward free societies.
Liberty Forum brings together amazing champions to exchange ideas and share strategies. The Dinner serves as a grand finale, celebrating heroes of the freedom movement.
Wed., Nov. 11, Crowne Plaza Times Square, 1605 Broadway
Thur., Nov. 12, Freedom Dinner, Capitale, 130 Bowery,
Speaker at Freedom Dinner, Charles Murray and Randy Barnett.
$100,000 Templeton Freedom Award announcement.
Prices begin at $300. Learn more here.
Germany did use hate-speech laws against Nazis in the 1920s 30s
…in the Weimar Republic…contrary to what most people think, Germany did have hate-speech laws that were applied quite frequently. The assertion that Nazi propaganda played a significant role in mobilizing anti-Jewish sentiment is irrefutable. But to claim that the Holocaust could have been prevented if only anti-Semitic speech had been banned has little basis in reality. Leading Nazis, including Joseph Goebbels, Theodor Fritsch, and Julius Streicher, were all prosecuted for anti-Semitic speech. And rather than deterring them, the many court cases served as effective pubic relations machinery for the Nazis, affording them a level of attention that they never would have received in a climate of a free and open debate.
In the decade from 1923 to 1933, the Nazi propaganda magazine Der Stürmer — of which Streicher was the executive publisher — was confiscated or had its editors taken to court no fewer than 36 times. The more charges Streicher faced, the more the admiration of his supporters grew. In fact, the courts became an important platform for Streicher’s campaign against the Jews.
…cases were regularly brought against individuals on account of anti-Semitic speech in the years leading up to Hitler’s takeover of power in 1933. “Remarkably, pre-Hitler Germany had laws very much like the Canadian anti-hate law,” he writes. “Moreover, those laws were enforced with some vigour. During the 15 years before Hitler came to power, there were more than 200 prosecutions based on anti-Semitic speech… As subsequent history so painfully testifies, this type of legislation proved ineffectual on the one occasion when there was a real argument for it.”
This is from a talk at Cato by Flemming Rose. In 2005 Rose’s Danish paper printed 12 cartoons of Muhammad. Flemming’s new book “The Tyranny of Silence” tells us what he’s learned. Read his talk here.
Mark Steyn explains climate change with facts and humor
This clever and funny talk is about the evidence offered by climate change proponents in the scientific community, including evidence generated by computer-based models. Steyn is one 20 authors of “Climate Change: The facts.” Watch him here.
Can there be an “after Socialism”? by Alan Charles Kors
The goal of socialism was to reap the cultural, scientific, creative, and communal rewards of abolishing private property and free markets, and to end human tyranny. Using the command of the state, Communism sought to create this socialist society. What in fact occurred was the achievement of power by a group of inhumane despots: Lenin, Stalin, Mao Tse-tung, Kim Il Sung, Ho Chi Minh, Pol Pot, Castro, Mengistu, Ceausescu, Hoxha, and so on, and so on.
We are invited now to discuss what follows these tyrants, and what lessons we have learned from them, and what sort of world might emerge from the loss of belief in Communism. There is one problem, however: the bodies. We are surrounded by slain innocents, and the scale is wholly new. This is not the thousands killed during the Inquisition; it is not the thousands of American lynching. This is not the six million dead from Nazi extermination. The best scholarship yields numbers that the mind must try to comprehend: scores, and scores, and scores, and scores of millions of bodies….
Kors was a Junto speaker. Read the rest here.
“Free Speech vs. Religion,” draw Muhammad cartoon contest
Onkar Ghate of Ayn Rand Institute interviewed by Undercurrent’s Jon Glatfelter about the shooting at the “Draw Muhammad” cartoon contest in Garland, Texas.
Undercurrent: Many of the major U.S. media players…have not published the cartoon contest’s winning piece. Why do you think that is?
Ghate: …there were similar responses in regard to the Charlie Hebdo cartoons and, before that, the Danish cartoons in 2005-2006. Sometimes a media outlet would try to explain why it is not showing its audience a crucial element of the news story…a non-exhaustive list: fear, cowardice, appeasement, sympathy….the appeaser’s false hope that if he gives in and doesn’t publish the cartoons, he will have satisfied the attackers and no further threats or demands will follow. Finally, many are sympathetic: out of deference to the non-rational, faith-based emotions of Muslims, they don’t publish the cartoons, even though those cartoons are news. They view the cartoonists and publishers as the troublemakers and villains….
Undercurrent: Some have condemned the contest’s organizer, Pamela Geller, and the winning artist, Bosch Fawstin. They say there’s a world of difference between good-natured free expression and malicious speech intended solely to antagonize….
Ghate: …I refuse to discuss [Geller’s] real or alleged flaws when totalitarians are trying to kill her, as though those flaws, even if real, justify or mitigate the actions of the aspiring killers. The NY Times editorial to which you link is a disgrace. After a sanctimonious paragraph saying that we all have the right to publish offensive material and that no matter how offensive that material may be, it does not justify murder, the rest of the editorial goes on to criticize the victim of attempted murder….this is like denouncing a rape victim instead of her rapists….
…But contra the editorial, the Garland event had a serious purpose. Look at the winning cartoon: it makes a serious point….
Read the rest here.
What NY Times didn’t learn from population bomb fizzle
Robert Tracinski writes: The NY Times just published an extraordinary “retro report” — a short video paired with an article — looking back at Paul Ehrlich’s “population bomb” theory, the fear that an uncontrolled human population would outstrip the ability of the Earth to support it.
The Times lays out some of the evidence for the theory’s failure, including the fact that the world’s population was about 3.5 billion when Ehrlich first made his apocalyptic prognostications in 1968. It’s 7 billion now, and we haven’t starved, we haven’t run out of resources, and we’re better off than we’ve ever been.
This report wouldn’t be extraordinary anywhere else. In the right-leaning press, it would be considered a pretty mild take on Ehrlich and his crackpot theories. The only thing that makes it extraordinary is that it isn’t in a right-leaning publication but in the citadel of the establishment left…. Read the rest here.
What’s so selfish about capitalism? by Barry Loberfeld
In Liberty Unbound, monthly emagazine: It is a mischaracterization of the free-market society that is as old as capitalism itself. One recent recycle comes from self-designated “libertarian socialist” and “anarchist: Noam Chomsky: “It’s just, I’m out for myself, nobody else — and that’s the way it ought to be” (Power Systems, p. 157).
Now it is absolutely true that laissez-faire capitalism allows someone to be “selfish” (in the most shallow sense), basically because such capitalism allows an individual to be any number of things. A man can spend every penny he has on trinkets (from which expanding circles of merchants and others will actually benefit), or he can donate all he owns to charity — or select among all the types of intermediate options….
The fear that freedom of charity — ending redistributive taxation, thereby completing the separation of state and charity — will mean not a diversification, but the utter death of charity, proceeds from the premise that the one thing everyone will do under capitalism is nothing — for or with anyone else…. Does freedom of assembly mean that people will never assemble — in any way?… Read more here.
“Innovationism:” rise in innovation of past few hundred years
Orgy of innovation. Donald Boudreaux says the list of inventions from the last few centuries is long, laptops, smartphones, tablets and TV. Countless unsung improvements that make our lives much easier. From zip top sandwich bags, twist bottle caps and long-lasting batteries.
There’s always been inventors and innovators, but their number exploded after the 18th century, leading to what was described in a previous videos as the “Hockey Stick of Human Prosperity.” Watch Boudreaux here, in under 3-1/2 minutes, on invention.
Kaizen review from Center for Ethics Entrepreneurship
Get activities, recent news and opinion. It’s less than weekly during summer vacation. Here are some things you can learn from them:
* UK startup creates custom fitted 3-D printed bionic arm for less than £1,000
* Don Boudreaux on the orgy of innovationism. a 3-minute clip at YouTube [This is the item above.]
* Entrepreneurial wine-aging via salt-water submersion targeted
* Stephen Hicks quoted on difference between opportunity entrepreneurs and necessity entrepreneurs in WSJ article by Charlie Wells on entrepreneurial satisfaction
* Richard Epstein [Junto speaker] on nail salons’ low pay and toxic fumes
* Half of U.S. businesses are home-based
* World’s first 3-D printed bridge brings new age of architecture
Kaizen is at Rockford University, Rockford, Illinois, read it here.
Chief Justice Roberts — the 60th vote in the Senate
… essentially saying with his decision that Obamacare is a bad law and poorly written — so we will fix it….
By Alan Joel, June 27, 2015, essay here.
Andy George — January 24, 1955 to May 4, 2015
Many people got to know Andy when he volunteered to improve the sound system for Junto. He also supplied music before and after each Junto for a number of years.
For over four months his doctors weren’t able to figure out what he was suffering from. He had some strokes at the end.
The people at the library appreciated what he was doing and began paying him to make more improvements. They hired him to run the sound when they rented their space to other groups and for events they hosted. He’s greatly missed by them and many others. His site is here.
Free market and Objectivist local meetings, sites and podcasts
*** Groups which meet in Manhattan ***
Gotham Tea Party (occasionally)
*** Sites to visit ***
Aristos: An online review of the arts
News Sandwich from Amy Peikoff
taxPOLItix by Alan J Dlugash
Robert Tracinski at The Federalist
*** Internet podcasts, all free ***
These are mainly weekly “radio” shows you can hear online, on your computer, phone, pad, etc. Listen to shows live or at any time. Most are on iTunes. If you’re listening live, join by commenting or asking questions by phone, email, in a chat room, tweeting, etc.
* “The Yaron Brook Show” is two hours weekly.
This radical for capitalism discusses news, culture and politics from the principled perspective of Ayn Rand’s philosophy, Objectivism.
Yaron, president Ayn Rand Institute, is co-author of “Free Market Revolution: How Ayn Rand’s ideas can end big government.”
He ends each show with suggestions of movies, music and novels, you never know what life enhancing gems he and his listeners might share.
Your questions or comments are welcome in the chat room, tweet or phone to talk with Yaron. Listen to any of these shows any time. They began January 2015.
Live Monday, 11:00am to 1:00pm eastern. Live or any time.
Live for Chicago radio AM560 The Answer, Saturday, 5:00pm to 6:00pm eastern. Live or anytime.
* “Philosophy in action” Diana Heish answer questions from listeners, applying rational principles to challenges of real life.
Live Sunday, Q A, 11:00am eastern
Live Thursday, interview and chat, 9:00pm eastern
Listen here, live or any time.
* Hillsdale Dialogues, a survey of great books, great men, and great ideas. Larry Arnn, president Hillsdale College, on Hugh Hewitt Show. Arnn is a teacher who enjoys teaching and his subjects, he makes learning fun and memorable.
Subject such as: “American Principles,” “Foreign Affairs and Separation of Powers,” “Israel, Iran, and Senator Cotton’s Letter.” On radio in NYC he’s often on Fridays, a short segment during the 7:00pm to 10:00pm eastern, show on AM970 The Answer. Listen online any time.
* “Don’t let it go…unheard” Amy Peikoff on news and politics from the perspective of Ayn Rand’s philosophy Objectivism.
Bosch Fawstin, illusWriter also on the show. Visit his site to see his clever and dramatic work.
Live Tuesday and Friday, 11:00pm to 1:00am eastern. Listen here, live or any time.
* “The Peikoff podcasts” Alternate weeks have Leonard Peikoff, philosopher, Ayn Rand’s intellectual heir or Yaron Brook, president Ayn Rand Institute.
Leonard answers questions on Ayn Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism, on human relationships, career, moral issues — not technical philosophy or practical politics. Yaron answers questions on politics, economics, foreign policy. Podcasts are available by topic, single questions or full episodes.
Fred Cookinham’s five Ayn Rand walking tours
“Atlas Shrugged,” “Ayn Rand’s Park Avenue,” “Ayn Rand’s Fifth Avenue,” “Skyscrapers of The Fountainhead,” “Ayn Rand on Broadway.” Private tours $30 per person. Arrange tour or get information, call Fred at home: 718-397-9019 or on his cell: 917-607-9019, email: fcookinham [at] juno.com His site is here.
Read and post to Junto sites
* Read and post to the Forum here.
About Junto and this Junto newsletter
* Gene Epstein moderates Junto. He’s the economics editor and books editor of Barron’s, the weekly business magazine, author of ”Econospinning: How to read between the lines when the media manipulate the numbers” Hardcover here or Kindle here.
* Iris Bell writes this e-newsletter, designs the Junto handouts and is a freelance graphic designer. She was Ayn Rand’s and the Nathaniel Branden Institute’s graphic designer.
* Oleg Atbashian created NYCjunto.com. He also sends out this e-newsletter, cares for its email list and moderates the discussions. His own famous site, The People’s Cube, discusses important issues with humor.
* Our founder and host is Victor Niederhoffer. Dedicated to the scientific method, free markets, deflating ballyhoo, creating value and laughter; a forum for us to use our meager abilities to make the world of specinvestments a better place. Visit his site here.
* This e-newsletter comes out twice a month. You might get an occasional extra email about a timely event.
* To subscribe to this newsletter put “Junto list” in the subject line, email your name preferred email address to: info@NYCjunto.org