Ralf Homann & Manuela Unverdorben


capitalist ball

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Capitalist Ball Movie Large

Keynote Speaker:

Monochrom (Vienna/Bamberg):
Was im Innersten zusammenhält…: Heute: Die Firmenhymne
Lea Hartung (Berlin): Mont Pèlerin Society – Marketing the Free Market
Michael Hirsch (Munich): 10 Thesen zum Neoliberalismus


From the middle of the 1990s more and more think tanks started to work in Brussels in order to influence the EU's political debate. Among these think tanks, several with a strong orientation towards radical free market ideology emerged.
From 2003-2007 the "Center for the New Europe" (CNE) organized an annual event to celebrate capitalism in Brussels, the Capitalist Ball. CNE was a non-partisan think tank that advocated free market economy and, among other things, was financed by transnational corporations such as Exxon Mobil or Pfizer and Merck (and it propagated expertise on environmental policies and health care). The Capitalist Ball was a successful social event and networking venue for the free market movement, it assembled the "friends of freedom" in Europe.

Beside a dinner and the ball, several awards were granted and "the capitalist of the year" was nominated. The Capitalist Ball was a homage to the giants and liberal pioneers Friedrich von Hayek, Milton Friedman, Ayn Rand and Ronald Reagan; and to the worldwide prosperity of all humans thanks to capitalism and the ideas of free market economy. It was euphemistically renamed in 2008, due to the global crisis, into Liberty Ball, and shortly after that totally abolished.
We want to give the ball its name and meaning back, as capitalism is still alive! For us, the Capitalist Ball is an event full of symbolic power, an event we would have liked to invent.



Photos: Edward Beierle