The Blair community was excited to welcome foreign policy and civil liberties expert Doug Bandow to the Society of Skeptics on April 6. His talk focused on foreign policy challenges facing President Joe Biden and his administration. The event, moderated by history department chair and Skeptics director Jason Beck, will began at 7 p.m. To view his full presentation, please click below:
Mr. Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, a Washington, D.C., public policy research organization. He writes for leading publications, including Fortune magazine, National Interest, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Times, and comments regularly on major news networks. Mr. Bandow is also a ForeignPolicy.com and Huffpost contributor, where he reflects frequently on policy in the United States. He has written several books, including Foreign Follies: America's New Global Empire, The Korean Conundrum: America's Troubled Relations with North and South Korea and Tripwire: Korea and U.S. Foreign Policy in a Changed World.
A former special assistant to President Ronald Reagan, Mr. Bandow previously visited the Society of Skeptics to discuss terrorism, drug legalization, international relations and presidential elections. He holds a JD from Stanford University.
On April 6, Mr. Bandow explored the complexity of issues facing the Biden administration. These challenges, he notes, have remained constant in the administrations of both President Biden and President Donald Trump.
“Many people imagine that President Biden will be able to solve the problems left by the last administration, but I want the audience to understand how complex many of these issues are,” Mr. Bandow said. “Moreover, it is important for people outside of Washington, D.C., to understand that there is substantial and surprising continuity in policy between the Trump and Biden administrations, even though their tone and rhetoric are very different.”
Mr. Bandow hopes the audience took away an interest in international affairs and a commitment to learning more about these issues. “I find the world to be endlessly fascinating, and international travel is the most interesting aspect of my work,” he said. “We all should be active in helping to make the world a better place.”
History of Skeptics
The Society of Skeptics was established as a forum for students and faculty to discuss and debate important global issues; it has grown to become one of the premier high school lecture series in the United States. Each week, speakers from the political, social, scientific, economic and literary arenas share their unique perspectives with students, who are encouraged to engage with presenters, asking questions and debating points of view.
The program, which is funded in part by The Class of 1968 Society of Skeptics Endowment Fund, was an outgrowth of the Blair International Society, begun in 1937. Forty years later, former history department chair Elliott Trommald, PhD, Hon. ’65, established the modern Skeptics program as a regular forum for student discussion and debate; history teacher Martin Miller, PhD, took over in the mid-1980s and molded the program into a weekly lecture series, one that has since continued without interruption. Under the tutelage of Dr. Miller and his successor, history department chair Jason Beck, Skeptics has featured a wide variety of speakers who are engaging, accomplished in their respective fields and often controversial. For a listing of upcoming Skeptics programs, please click here.