Last night I participated in something quite amazing by any standard, something with truly revolutionary potential. Three U.S. historians (Kevin Gutzman, Brion McClanahan, and I), each one an author in the Politically Incorrect Guide series of books, answered questions in a live Q&A for members of Liberty Classroom, my new site.
Content at Liberty Classroom is instantly downloadable, but I knew from the beginning I wanted to supplement it with live sessions. That was the right idea.
All three of us appeared on the screen simultaneously, each in his own box. Attendees could chat among themselves in a chat box, and submit questions to us via a special “Ask a Question” button. I, the host, could see all the questions that had been submitted. When I chose one for us to answer, it popped up onto the screen right beside our faces, so everyone could see it.
The platform automatically records the session for people who couldn’t be present live. And those people can now glance through all the questions that were posed, click on ones they find interesting, and be taken to the precise parts of the recording in which we answered just those questions.
Given that it was our first attempt, it was amazingly glitch-free. We had to get used to the fact that there was (inevitably) a bit of a delay, so sometimes we’d start talking over each other a bit. We eventually got used to it, and will be super polished for next time. But everyone seemed to love the idea and the execution.
And we couldn’t have done it without the brilliant platform created by the guys at Vokle.com. Absolutely wonderful. (And they’re Ron Paul people, too.)
Here are the questions we answered last night:
What do you think about Madison’s flip-flop on the national bank?
Is there a book that covers the history of jury nullification more in depth?
The Japanese aggression against the U.S. to start World War II has always baffled me. What were they thinking?
Could you go into more detail about Bretton Woods? How it started and why it failed.
Did criminals come to the New World to escape punishment? Could the very poor make the trip?
Who, in your respective opinions, was the worst president of all time?
What were the reasons for the bank panics in early America, and can you recommend a good book on the subject?
Madison is referred to as the father of the Constitution. Please explain why this is incorrect.
At what point did the federal government take control of the militia from the states?
Leading up to the Civil War, what specific kinds of tariffs did the South feel most harmed by?
What percentage of free men (white or otherwise) owned slaves before the Civil War?
What was the intent of the drafters of the 14th Amendment? Should we fully incorporate the Bill of Rights?
Was the trade embargo of 1807 unnecessary interventionism or did Jefferson have justification?
Do you see a need for a constitutional convention? Any chance of it happening? What changes would you make?
Did Jefferson have constitutional authority for the Louisiana Purchase?
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