What Starts at the University of Austin Could Change the World

 Not even the Clintons, Joe Biden and Beto O’Rourke could screw up the country as much as colleges and universities have.

Colleges gave us political correctness, cancel culture, and the new woke movement and that’s almost too much for one nation to shoulder. But help is on the way.

The University of Texas at Austin has been quietly working with major donors and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick to form “The Liberty Institute,” based on intellectual diversity.

Another group is planning an entire new campus, “The University of Austin,” dedicated to the fearless pursuit of truth.   Imagine not one, but two institutions, both in Austin, both offering conservative values that could change the world.

Random Samplings is a service of the Texas Public Policy Foundation at TexasPolicy.com.

What is the Liberty Institute?

Simply put, the Liberty Institute would be a think tank, located on the University of Texas campus that would promote the study of individual liberty, limited government, private enterprise, and free markets. Good for UT if it can get this done, but note that all those conservative values will not play well with snowflake students and left-wing professors. So we’ll see what happens.

There is already some funding. The Texas Legislature worked in $6 million into the 2022-23 state budget, and University officials promise another $6 million. As to who’s involved in this project, UT-Austin President Jay Hartzell is said (in published reports) to be working with UT System Board Chair Kevin Eltife, and a pair of UT alumni, oil tycoon Bud Brigham and billionaire businessman Bob Rowling.

Eltife owns a commercial real estate company and is a former state senator. Brigham is said to be a follower of Ayn Rand which would make him an Objectivist. A piece in the Texas Tribune labeled him as the “real leader on this.”

It will be interesting to see if a conservative department can co-exist with UT’s “Division of Diversity and Community Engagement.” After all, one is dedicated to “equity,” and the other to “excellence.” And each threatens the very existence of the other. I am skeptical, but hopeful.

This Bible verse on the University of Texas Main Building is not revered by the institution. (Photo by Lynn Woolley for WBDaily)

What is The University of Austin?

“UATX” is envisioned as a private liberal arts college “in response to what some perceive as a culture of censorship on college campuses.” In other words, the curriculum will be based on truth rather than woke-ness.

Note that the inscription carved in stone on the UT-Austin main building is from the Bible, John 8:32: Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

The incoming president is Pano Kanelos, the former president of St. John’s College. Kanelos has written that he is helping establish the university in response to institutions that produce graduates who are “incapable and unwilling to participate in the core activity of democratic governance.”

UATX will take some time to find a location suitable for a campus, hire faculty, and do all the necessary things to start an undergraduate degree program by 2024. Right now, it’s looking for land and asking for donations.

So who’s behind UATX? Here’s a name that will surprise you: Lawrence Summers, a former president of Harvard. Also on board is ACLU President Nadine Strossen, Arthur Brooks, former president of the American Enterprise Institute, several journalists, and some other former university presidents. The school intends to offer masters programs in entrepreneurship and leadership, and at some point in politics and applied history and even education and public service.

The University says it has the funds to get started, but wants to raise about $250 million more. The University says it will not consider race, gender (sex), or class into admissions decisions because it “stands firmly against that sort of discrimination.”

So don’t look for a Department of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. The plan seems solid, and the Eyes of Austin and the World are upon you. God speed. This is what we need.

Change our universities and we change the world.

Democrats like to talk about “root causes.” If you drill down to try and find out why there are so many leftists in the world, why so many people prefer a failed system like socialism, why so many young people hate American icons like George Washington and extoll street thugs like George Floyd – education is why.

Our colleges and universities have been centers of censorship and Marxism for decades. And isn’t it ironic that two of the best hopes we have for turning this around are in the liberal stronghold of Austin?

Just think. The Marxist students at UT will have something more to deal with than “The Eyes of Texas” if the Liberty Institute becomes a reality.   And if the University of Austin takes off –as it likely will because parents will feel great about sending their children there – Austin will have a university without a “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” department. It won’t have a use for one because it will be essentially colorblind.

It’s a big “if,” but if these two projects come to fruition, and if they succeed, other cities and other campuses will take notice. Austin may never be conservative, but there are forces at work pushing it in that direction.

Indeed, what starts here changes the world.

Watch for my new book “Darker Secrets” coming soon.

Lynn Woolley is a Texas-based author, broadcaster, and songwriter. Follow his podcast at https://www.PlanetLogic.us. Check out his author’s page at https://www.Amazon.com/author/lynnwoolley. Order books direct from Lynn at https://PlanetLogicPress.Square.Site. Email Lynn at lwoolley9189@gmail.com.

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