March 12, 2019 Print

Monetary policy, interest rates, and global capital flows were key topics at Alamos Alliance XXVI, which attracted economists, academics, policymakers, and several Atlas Network partners to the prestigious annual conference that is held annually in northwest Mexico. With discussions centered around the primary theme of “Prosperity and Public Policy in the New Millennium,” the conference also signaled the start of a growing association between Atlas Network and Alamos Alliance.

This new venture will be an opportunity for Atlas Network and our partners to engage with some of the region’s most influential opinion leaders and decision-makers. In addition to Roberto Salinas León, the executive director of the Center for Latin America and the conference organizer, this year’s presenters included Stanford University professor and futurist Francis Fukuyama, former Texas senator Phil Gramm, author Deirdre McCloskey, Columbia University professor Charles Calomiris, Texas A&M professor Tom Savings, and many more. 

“Forging close ties between Alamos Alliance and Atlas Network opens an invaluable door to strengthen the conferences’ annual program, bring new perspectives and new participants for consideration, and consolidate a very fruitful exchange that has existed between both organizations since the early part of the new millennium,” noted Salinas León.  

As attendees dealt with contemporary policy issues facing Mexico and Latin America, the importance of philosophical topics such as the rule of law, political order, and widespread prosperity helped provide nuance and substance to the discussion. One of the highlights occurred during author Sebastian Edwards’s presentation about his book American Default: The Untold Story of FDR, the Supreme Court, and the Battle over Gold, which articulated the problems that occurred after President Franklin D. Roosevelt removed the United States from the gold standard, depreciated the dollar, and effectively annulled all debt contracts. Edwards compared Roosevelt’s actions to the infamous defaults now associated with Argentina.

The final day of programming featured discussions on trade, public spending, education, immigration, and deficits and featured University of Chicago’s Kevin Murphy, Johns Hopkins’ Anne Kruger, and Mexico’s former Minister of Finance Pedro Aspe.

Established in 1993 by UCLA professor Arnold Harberger and Emeritus Dean of the Anderson School of Mangement Clay LaForce, the conference has hosted many distinguished academics and policymakers, including Armen Alchian, Milton and Rose Friedman, Bob Bartely, James Q. Wilson, John B. Taylor, Robert Mundell, George Schultz, Vernon L. Smith, and Allan Melzter. 

The new association between Atlas Network and Alamos Alliance will further strengthen both networks and involve select leaders from each network in future meetings. Atlas Network CEO Brad Lips has also been invited to join the Alamos Alliance board of directors.