Michael Boskin, Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and T. M. Friedman Professor of Economics at Stanford University, discussed “Why Is Social Security So Hard to Reform and What Can Be Done About It?”
Peter Thiel spoke about the basic principles that underlie innovative products and startup firms, using examples from his own experience starting up firms such as Paypal and Palantir. He emphasized the importance of creating a firm or product with characteristics of monopoly, and contrasted that idea with the distinction between monopoly and competition taught in economics.
Kevin Hassett, Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Hoover and former Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, discussed “An Evaluation of the Economics Effects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.”
Jonathan Berk, the A.P. Giannini Professor of Finance at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, discussed “Regulation of Charlatans in High-Skill Professions,” a paper with Jules H. van Binsbergen. John Taylor, the Mary and Robert Raymond Professor of Economics at Stanford University and the George P. Shultz Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, was the moderator.
Stephen Haber, Peter and Helen Bing Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and the A.A. and Jeanne Welch Milligan Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University, discussed “The Ecological Origins of Economic and Political Systems.”
Lawrence Summers, President Emeritus and Charles W. Eliot University Professor at Harvard University, and former U.S. treasury secretary, talked about “Responsible Nationalism.”