Solutions and Illusions

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On May 4, Chris Swanson will give the twelfth talk in the series “It’s Complicated: The Histories Behind What We Think We Know.”

When a populous and complex society has problems, they are always big ones that need big solutions. But who is going to provide these big solutions? Private enterprise? (Should we trust in Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” to guide our resources to address issues in the most efficient way?) Government? (Do we need its authority and power to tackle the problems since private enterprise is too profit-focused?) Independent, non-profit organizations? (Do we need a humanitarian focus?) The situation is indeed complicated! This class will examine the value and inherent limitations of each option. And while recognizing that our desires and hopes for solutions are good, Chris will make the case that the hope for a solution is ultimately an illusion but that hope in God will not be disappointed.

Chris Swanson is the president of Gutenberg College where he has been a tutor since the college opened its doors in 1994. He has a B.S. in physics and math from Westmont College (1986) and both an M.S. (1987) and Ph.D. (1992) in physics from the University of Oregon. He has also done post-doctoral research at the University of Oregon and taught at Westmont College in California.

This class may be attended in person at Gutenberg College or online via Zoom. There is a small charge for remote attendance. Registration is required to attend via Zoom.


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