The Rise of Liberty in Brazil

This is the second part of my report on the recent activities of the Language of Liberty Institute in southern Brazil, where the philosophy of liberty is taking hold in the minds of young people:

For the first weekend seminar the Brazil Liberty Team returned to Porto Alegre where we were joined by Roberto Rachewsky of the Millennium Institute, Diogo Costa of Ibmec and University of Iceland professor Hannes Gissurarson. The event was hosted by Instituto de Estudos em Gestão Empresarial (IEGE) and organized by Clube Miss Rand, a student group started as late as last January that already attracts more than 40 liberty enthusiasts to their weekly meetings.

With topics ranging from the importance of language to education and economic freedom, and from the drug war to entrepreneurship and how modern technology can advance the cause of liberty, the presentations were very well received. They also stimulated lively discussions with all attendees after the speeches and during the breaks. The seminar brought together a truly international team of speakers from different backgrounds, so that everyone in the audience likely could identify with at least one of them and their passions. We hope to be back again!

The last weekend of May brought the expanded Brazil Liberty Team to Curitiba, capital and largest city of the state of Paraná. The seventh largest city of Brazil, Curitiba is home to 1.8 million people and over 3 million in the wider metropolitan area. In 2009 Reader’s Digest named Curitiba the best city to live in Brazil. The city’s modern transportation system, buildings and shopping streets give it quite a European feel.

The seminar was organized in collaboration with the local student group Grupo de Estudos Liberalismo e Democracia (GELD), which started last September with Saturday morning meetings and just four people in attendance, yet now has some forty members and continues to grow. Diogo Costa was not with us for this event but the audience was treated to his Ibmec colleague Adriano Gianturco’s insights about how innovation and entrepreneurship can counter government failures. After all, for all the talk about market failures, how come no one ever brings up government failures?

For the Liberty Seminar the beautiful city of Curitiba was a new addition to the schedule. And despite the upcoming exams the turnout was a little higher than in other cities, with about seventy people in total in attendance. After the seminar came to a close on Saturday, we were once again invited to a typical Brazilian churrasco (barbeque) to end our time in this wonderful country in style.

It has been a very uplifting and inspiring experience to witness the growth of the Brazilian liberty movement firsthand over the last two weeks. Although many are worried about this month’s World Cup – not to mention the aftermath – there is plenty of reason for optimism for our fellow liberty lovers in the land of futebol and samba! Our special thanks go out to Gabriela, Language of Liberty Institute representative in Brazil, for flawlessly coordinating five different events throughout the countryside and across state borders!

Curitiba

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