2014 Symposium

In the bustle of daily politics, it can be difficult to discern the broad trends that will shape America's future.  The 2014 Bradley Symposium in Washington, D.C., convened experts to help us see past the horizon and think through the challenges and opportunities that the coming years are likely to bring.

"America's Prospects:  Promise and Peril" examined demographic, economic, and political trendlines in American life.  The panel included Karlyn Bowman of the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy ResearchGlenn Hubbard of the Columbia Business School, Henry Olsen of the Ethics and Public Policy Center (EPPC), and Kristen Soltis Anderson of The Daily BeastBradley Prize recipient, EPPC Hertog Fellow, and National Affairs editor Yuval Levin moderated.

Bowman summarized America's "moving target of demographics" -- including racial and ethnic changes, geographical differences, and the decline of religiosity.  Hubbard said the American economy is in a period of stagnation and argued for policies aiming for "investment, innovation, and inclusion."

Olsen recommended that policymakers pay attention to a particular segment of the population that is being particularly impacted by this stagnation:  the middle class.  Those who craft and propose policies offering the middle class "comfort, dignity, and respect" will meet with political success, according to Olsen.

And saying that Millennials are "a generation worth fighting for," Anderson noted that conservatives' and Millennials' values coincide on the importance of hard work, education, family, and individual social responsibility.

Video, audio, and transcripts of the panelists' presentations are available online.

The Symposium was co-hosted by Milwaukee's Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, EPPC, and National Affairs.