If You're Going to FreedomFest, Make Sure To Catch All the Reason Panels

The world's largest gathering of libertarians is about to start in Vegas. Here's your essential guide to all things Reason.



FreedomFest, the world's largest annual gathering of libertarians, gets started tomorrow in Las Vegas. (It's not too late to attend!)

The keynote speakers include William Shatner, Greg Gutfeld, and John Stossel (who will also be debuting his first "Stossel on Reason" documentary during the four-day event). There are panels and presentations galore on virtually every aspect of libertarian thought, policy, and philosophy—go here to leaf through the event's agenda.

On Saturday, July 22, there will be a special "Reason Day" slate of events, starting with a panel featuring Matt Welch, Katherine Mangu-Ward, and me called "To Boldly Go…Reason and the Glorious Libertarian Future." We'll suss out the direction we want to see the future head in and will underscore the policies and mindsets that can make that possible. Other Reason Day panels include "Liberty on Mars (and Other Planets)," featuring Mangu-Ward, Justin Monticello, and Berin Szoka; "Liberating the Human Body," with Welch, Ron Bailey, Zoltan Istvan, and Mike Riggs; and "Is Spock Libertarian?: The Politics of Science Fiction," featuring me, Mangu-Ward, Peter Suderman, and David Brin.

Beyond that, Matt Welch will join John Stossel to talk about being a libertarian journalist, Katherine Mangu-Ward will participate in the vaunted "final panel" of the conference, and I'll interview Greg Gutfeld and participate in a debate on Donald Trump's presidency so far. Nearly a dozen Reason staff will be roaming the halls, reporting on goings-on, taping interviews, documenting "The Humans of FreedomFest," and more.

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of FreedomFest, the organizers also put together an online poll of over 10,000 people to name the "100 Most Influential Libertarians." Among the honorees were many Reason folks: John Stossel (4), whose online video series "Stossel on Reason" debuts this Thursday; David Koch (6), longtime trustee of Reason Foundation, the nonprofit that publishes this website; Drew Carey (17), the Price Is Right host, Reason Foundation trustee, and force behind the award-winning documentary Reason Saves Cleveland; Robert W. Poole, Jr. (19), one of the founding editors of Reason magazine and founder of Reason Foundation; myself (22); and Matt Welch (24), Reason editor-at-large, author of McCain: Myth of the Maverick and co-author of The Declaration of Independents. Add to that another half-dozen or so Reason columnists, former staffers, contributing editors, and it's practically like reading our masthead. Many of the people on the list will be on site for a special celebration on Friday, July 21.

FreedomFest is a great institution, a libertarian Woodstock that happens every year! If you're attending, make sure to check out all the Reason Day panels while you're there. And the Reason booth in the exhibition hall. And everything else this amazing conference has to offer.

Last year at FreedomFest, we sat with Gary Johnson and William Weld to talk about the 2016 election. Check it out:

NEXT: Want to Look at Online Porn? The U.K. Gov't Wants to Strip You of Your Privacy

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  1. FreedomFest, the world’s largest annual gathering of libertarians,

    “Where eye contact is frowned upon.”

    1. And genital contact is ground upon?

  2. >>>myself (22); and Matt Welch (24)

    Reason, where humility is #1

    1. I just scanned the whole long list of speakers, and I don’t see a single true libertarian. Pass.

  3. Other sessions include:

    The Donald – Russian Pawn or Agitator for War Against Russia? (SPOILER: He’s both!)

    UBI – Does Reason love the Welfare State or are they in love with the Welfare State?

    “Equivocate This!” – An exploration of how to present vaguely free marketish arguments in terms your progtard friends can appreciate.

    Borders, We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Borders! – Now that states are legalizing pot and gay marriage is allowed, we take an in depth look at the last of the three pillars of Reasontarianism.

    1. Bulverism and Reading Comprehension: How To Tell Writers What They Really Mean Based On Who You Think They Are

      Cosmo Contamination Of Your Precious Bodily Essences And The Single Libertarian

      Protecting Your Victory Garden From The Orange Threat

      Hugbox Construction For Dummies

      How To Whine About Online Magazines You Don’t Even Read Anymore Without Really Trying

      1. To Shave or Not to Shave: Barbara Bush vs Michelle Obama

  4. Please try to find out what the 91% of libertarians, who shun the libertarian label, would like to be called instead.

    1. Shhh, don’t summon it…

      1. You have to say the name three times in one comment.

        1. You have to say “Chipper Morning, Now #1” three times in one comment.

          Did I just save sanity?

    2. “Hihnsters”

    3. I’m guessing what they’d like to be called is “sane”.

  5. I wonder if David Brin challenges somebody to a duel again.

    Oh but then he dives into his true nastiness: “What shines through every line of Brin’s screed is this revolutionary passion for murder, desolation, destruction.”

    Okay, there is only one response that piece of shit deserves: I look you in the eye and call you an evil person and a liar. Were these the days you yearn for, the ensuing duel would leave your anatomy changed, though I figure I’d have to stand in line. How utterly you depend on the rights that you claim to despise!

    When I finish here, I’ll have no truck with your vileness, ever again.


    1. WTF is that? My eyeballs are bleeding and my head hurts

      1. Jeebus. TL; DR. That is longer than a Ken Schultz comment.

      2. When I was a younger man, I read a full third of a Mencius post. That was enough for a few lifetimes, really.

  6. Gutfeld is a libertarian? I’m not saying he’s not, I just always thought of him as more of a conservative.

    1. He was when he started working for Fox, but has moved a lot to the right.

      On Red Eye, Andy Levy used to get on him for holding very non-libertarian positions

    2. Gutfeld’s biggest flaw is his love of the NSA.

      Otherwise he’s a good egg and pretty entertaining. Red Eye was a great show under his command.

  7. I see a video has been provided as an example of 2 examples of what is NOT libertarians.

  8. You’re all problematic.

    1. No one is more problematic than JB.

  9. Ah yes. The Valo Three of libertarianism.

    DATA: There are dozens of Bajoran camps on the three class-M planets. I suggest we may want to begin on Valo Three, where an adhoc leader named Jas Holza lives. The Federation has had several dealings with him.
    CRUSHER: I met Holza at a symposium a few years ago… I found him to be a very concerned leader and a good spokesman for his people. And a terrific dancer. No, really, I’m serious. At a reception afterwards.
    TROI: At least this man has genuine experience in diplomacy.
    PICARD: And that’s a big advantage on this mission. Very well. Mister Data, will you contact Holza, arrange a meeting?
    RO: You’re wasting your time. Holza is nobody. He’s the token Bajoran that respectable people invite to symposiums and diplomatic soirees. But he has no real influence among my people.
    DATA: Ensign, whom do you suggest we speak to?
    RO: Don’t you understand? These are desperate people ready to martyr themselves. They don’t want to talk.
    WORF: This ship is prepared to defend itself if necessary.
    RO: Oh, it will be. Don’t fool yourself. This mission will end in bloodshed.
    PICARD: Well, let’s hope that you’re mistaken, Ensign. But can you point us at the right individual, as Mister Data suggested?
    RO: I would go to the camp on the southern continent of Valo Two. Find a man named Keeve Falor. He has no diplomatic experience. And he won’t ask you to dance.

    1. Either way, it’s just as good a reason to go to Vegas and get hammered and party for a few days.

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