How many libertarian rock stars does it take to make a roomful of economics and political science majors get up and dance?
Not a single one, as it turns out.
Dorian Electra Fridkin Gomberg, the keynote performer at this year’s International Students For Liberty Conference (ISFLC), said, “I don’t call myself a libertarian at all anymore, that’s just what other people call me for convenience.”
With somewhere around 1,300 free-market enthusiasts turned out for the conference, the singer and songwriter had a full house as audience on Saturday night. A small crowd got up to dance during the performance of Fast Cash, one of her most recent songs with a video on YouTube.
“That was unprecedented fun,” Dorian Electra said. “I could live off that feeling of everybody just losing it and going crazy.”
The 20-year-old junior at Shimer College and her team have produced her songs and accompanying videos under the patronage of various fellowships, awards, and internships, including a 2012 internship with production company Emergent Order and a 2009-2010 fellowship with Students For Liberty, the host organization of last weekend’s conference.
Emergent Order is also behind the production of a pair of videos that portray early 20th-Century economists Friedrich A. Hayek and John M. Keynes rapping the tenets of their respective conflicting theories. Together, the “Keynes vs. Hayek” videos have been viewed 6.3 million times since they first appeared on YouTube in 2010 and 2011.
Both Dorian Electra and Emergent Order seek to educate with the work they do.
Dorian Electra loves hearing about students and teachers who have used her videos in their classroom, she said.
When asked at the Students For Liberty conference her reason for making her videos, she said, “Definitely turning people on to the ideas.”
With 1,344 YouTube subscribers and 362,491 views on her videos, Dorian Electra maintains something of a following, though it can’t be determined whether her fans are after the ideas, the music, or both.
“It is fun to occupy this weird space of feeling like a rock star, but the only reason I’m rock star is this venue, in this small world of libertarians,” she said.
Fix contributor Julie Ershadi is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College.