Big Debates to Bring Solutions to the Forefront!

FreedomFest is known for its big, controversial debates. We believe that in order for truth to come to light, we must listen to all sides, openly and fearlessly. That's why we eschew political labels and focus on the issues. That's when people can really share different points of view and really hear another perspective. And that's when insight and progress come about.

In the past, we've had some pretty spectacular debates:

  • The Big Trump Debate (this one nearly came to blows!)
  • The Dream Debate of the Century - Stephen Moore (#1 supply sider) took on Paul Krugman (world's #1 Keynesian) for an explosive debate on economics
  • Bull versus Bear Debate - each year our top investment advisors make their case for their latest market predictions. "Bears make headlines but bulls make money!"
  • Should We Tax the Rich More or Less?
  • Anarchy versus Limited Government, which one is truly the recipe for the maximum personal freedom
  • Twenty Minutes to Your Door: Should Prostitution Be Legal? (this was SRO!)

Debates for FreedomFest 2018

FF18-Sliders – Bitcoin

Revolutionary New Currency or Tulipmania? The Bitcoin Debate

Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne declares the blockchain technology behind Bitcoin as “more Revolutionary than the Internet.” He and Jeffrey Tucker (American Institute for Economic Research) will make the case that crypto currencies are here to stay. Pomona Professor Gary Smith calls Bitcoin a speculation only. He and Peter Schiff (Asia-Pacific Capital) will argue against Bitcoin as an investment. Noami Brockwell (the original "Bitcoin Girl") will moderate.

FF18-Sliders – Playboy

Cultural Advance or Moral Decline: Should a Room Be Dedicated to Hugh Hefner?

Missouri Professor Steven Watts, author of Mr. Playboy: Hugh Hefner and the American Dream,” makes the libertarian case that Hefner liberated American society from Puritanical sexual neuroses, while conservative New York Times columnist Ross Douthat declares Mr. Playboy a chauvinist pornographer who exploited women and made our culture “coarser, crueler and more sterile.” Moderated by The Atlas Society CEO Jennifer Grossman. A timely debate given the rise of the #MeToo movement. Get an early seat for this one.

FF18-Sliders – Gun Control

Will Guns Be Outlawed?

In the coming era of gun control, will only politicians and the Hollywood elite have bodyguards packing heat to protect themselves? Does public safety outweigh individual sovereignty and Constitutional rights? What is the REAL solution to the tragic problem of mass shootings?

FF18-Sliders – The Wall

A People Divided: Is the "Wall" About Rule of Law or Racism?

President Trump promised to build a wall to protect America, and millions of Americans voted for that idea. But is it really the right policy? Are immigrants (legal or illegal) on net balance good or bad for the country?


CHINA: Friend or Foe?

What's the REAL story of China? Is the Communist country that embraces so much capitalism and trade actually our ALLY or is it our ENEMY? Stephen Moore and John Tamny take on this vital debate.

Adam Smith: Father of Free-Market Capitalism?

A debate with Gene Epstein and Deirdre Nansen McCloskey

The Great Libertarian Debate: Should You VOTE?

A debate between Jeff Berwick and Mark Skousen. Moderated by Steven Watts.


Gene Epstein, columnist of "Economic Beat" at Barron's

Deirdre McCloskey

Deirdre Nansen McCloskey, University of Illinois at Chicago, Distinguished Professor of Economics, History, English, and Communication


Jeff Berwick, Dollar Vigilante


Mark Skousen, Forecasts & Strategies

We're hard at work putting together lots more debates for FreedomFest 2018. Stay tuned for updates as we work on the program!

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