Acton Institute Powerblog

Economics made the world a better place

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“A lot of doom and gloom types say we’re living in dark times. But they’re wrong,” says economist Donald J. Boudreaux. “While there are real problems, the world has never been healthier, wealthier, and happier than it is today. Over a billion people have been lifted from dire poverty in just the past few decades.”

Joe Carter Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).


  • Yes, the world is better of today than ever, but it’s not because of economics. Capitalism was born in the Dutch Republic about 200 years before Adam Smith wrote his book. It took economists another century to correct Smith’s errors and to even begin to figure out what was happening. Then Keynes caused the field to regress to primitive economics and mainstream econ lost all of its explanatory power. Only Austrian economics does a good job of explaining how nations grow rich and it didn’t reach that level until Mises arrived. Most of the progress had already taken place without any help from economics. Today, mainstream econ is a hindrance to prosperity because it embraces socialism.