ATLAS NETWORK’S RESPONSE TO THE GLOBAL COVID-19 CRISIS
As our partners and friends around the world cope with the evolving health and safety challenges related to the spread of COVID-19, Atlas Network will continue to update this page with new information about events, educational programming, and network opportunities.
A Statement from Brad Lips, Atlas Network's CEO
The COVID-19 crisis requires vigilant action in the short-term from health-care providers, from caregivers, and from all of us as members of communities that are stressed in unprecedented ways.
At the same time that we recognize the need for clear and effective governmental responses to this public health crisis, we must be wary of attempts to turn emergency exercises of government power into a permanent expansion of authority.
In 1794 James Madison, in a letter to Thomas Jefferson, warned of “the old trick of turning every contingency into a resource for accumulating force in the Government.” This old trick reared its head in E. J. Dionne’s column on March 15 in The Washington Post, “A pandemic makes all of us a little bit more socialist.” Let us be clear: Socialism is the wrong response to a contagious disease. Emergency powers must not be the new normal after the emergency has passed. The cause of limited government and free markets has never been more important than now.
In times of crisis, governments expand their powers, and after the crisis has passed, they almost never return to their prior levels. Ronald Reagan famously quipped in 1964, “A government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we’ll ever see on this earth.” The economic historian Robert Higgs warned us of the “Ratchet Effect” of crises: “Throughout U.S. history, national emergencies have served as outstanding occasions for the (ratcheting) loss of liberties.” It is true in the United States. It is true everywhere.
With the goal of saving lives, Atlas Network and our 506 partner organizations promote responses to COVID-19’s challenges based on evidence, proper public health measures, and sound economic principles. That includes defending free enterprise and wealth creation, without which we are helpless in the face of this and future crises. We are focused on doing what needs to be done, which includes restraining governments from exercising powers unrelated to the crisis.
Supporting the cause of individual liberty, free markets, and limited government is not less important today. Indeed, our cause is needed more now than ever before. We thank you for joining with us in thoughtfully meeting the challenges of this moment, while defending for the duration the sacred cause of liberty.
Asia Liberty Forum will be rescheduled to January 2021.
Europe Liberty Forum, which was scheduled for May 14-15 in Kyiv, Ukraine, will be rescheduled. No date has been set. The Europe Fundraising Project Plan workshop and The Atlas Network Experience tour of Kyiv will also be rescheduled.
Lights, Camera, Liberty 2020, which was scheduled for April 30-May 3 in Los Angeles, California, will be rescheduled to August 13-16, 2020.
No final decision has been made about Latin America Liberty Forum, which is currently scheduled for June 11-12 in Mexico City, Mexico; or Africa Liberty Forum, which is currently scheduled for August 20-21 in Accra, Ghana. Please keep the date on your calendars. However, we also think it's wise to delay booking airfare until a decision has been made.
Please contact Chelsea Schick at Chelsea.Schick@atlasnetwork.org with any specific event-related questions.
Thank you for your understanding as we work through these challenges together.
COVID-19 response resources from Atlas Network:
- Webinar | Making Tough Decisions: How to handle events in light of the COVID-19 outbreak, Mar. 19, 2020
- Webinar | Managing Your New Virtual Team, Mar. 24, 2020
- Webinar | Nail It and Scale It: Fundraising Tips to Start and Grow a Think Tank, Mar. 26, 2020
- Webinar | Building a Data Driven Enterprise, Apr. 16, 2020
- Webinar | Building Your Brand on Social Media, May 7, 2020