September 20, 2010

THE PATH UNIVERSALLY TAKEN...EVENTUALLY:

Manuel Ayau: Champion of Liberty: He opened Latin America's eyes to the true source of prosperity. (MARY ANASTASIA O'GRADY, 9/19/10, WSJ)

In the midst of this turmoil came Ayau, with six like-minded Guatemalans, armed only with the desire to discover the ideas that might transform their country into a just and prosperous nation. They formed the Center of Economic and Social Studies, CEES by its Spanish initials, in November 1958. The goal, Muso wrote in a 1992 memoir about the founding of Francisco MarroquĂ­n University, "was to study and disseminate the ethical, economic and legal principles of a free society."

Ayau and his colleagues read voraciously and debated vociferously. "All of us were self-taught in these subjects, which would come to absorb much of our time," he recalled. Over the next half century CEES would publish over 900 pamphlets in defense of the market. Ayau's many contributions (98) had titles like "On the Morality of Government," "Planning: Rational or Absurd," and "Robinson and Friday Invent the Common Market." In October 1978 he wrote an essay in a CEES pamphlet called "Price Controls," while Milton Friedman penned "In Defense of Dumping" in the same publication.

Those pamphlets went all over the region. Peruvian Enrique Ghersi, one of the co-authors of the 1986 best-seller "The Other Path," says that one called "Ten Lessons for Underdevelopment" was "key to awakening in me the vocation and commitment to defend liberty." CEES brought to Guatemala such intellectual giants as Ludwig von Mises (1964), Friedrich Hayek (1965) and Ludwig Erhard (1968).

In promoting these ideas Ayau was going up against communists, mercantilists, public-sector unions and the central planners at powerful institutions like the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank. But he was only warming up.

By the 1960s it was clear that the left, with all its intolerance, had captured Guatemala's academia. So in 1971 Ayau and his fellow advocates of freedom founded UFM in a rented house with contributions from a handful of Guatemalans totaling $40,000. There were eight students in the first graduating class. Last year there were 509.

Enhanced by Zemanta
Posted by Orrin Judd at September 20, 2010 6:44 AM
blog comments powered by Disqus
« THE GENOCIDE CANARD THAT WON'T DIE: | Main | IF GOD DID NOT WANT THEM TO BE SHEARED...: »