Rev. Ben Johnson

Rev. Ben Johnson is Senior Editor at the Acton Institute.

Posts by Rev. Ben Johnson

Can human rights be repealed by majority vote?

This Friday, May 25, Irish voters will decide in a national referendum whether to repeal Article 8 of the Constitution, which “acknowledges” the rights of all living human beings in Ireland, including unborn children, and encourages lawmakers to enact “laws to defend and vindicate that right.” The new language would allow the right to abortion (or, in the proposed wording, “termination of pregnancies”). Continue Reading...

Socialism is fueling assaults on churches: Report

Violations of religious liberty, including physical assaults against church buildings, increased in 2017, according to a report from a watchdog based in Spain. Socialists perpetrated many of these attacks – which ranged from vandalism to attempted fire-bombings with Molotov cocktails – to protest both the Roman Catholic Church’s stance on social issues and its impact on economics. Continue Reading...

Karl Marx: Father of Catholic social teaching?

First, the chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences said, “Right now, those who are best implementing the social doctrine of the Church are the Chinese.” Now, Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Germany has credited Karl Marx with helping craft Catholic social teaching. Continue Reading...

The forgotten Catholic founders of economics

Many people acclaim Adam Smith as the father of economics. Others trace the origins of economics to the eighteenth century Physiocrats, while others look back far as Aristotle. “The real founders of economic science actually wrote hundreds of years before Smith,” wrote Lew Rockwell at Mises.org. Continue Reading...

FAQ: New Karl Marx statue cheered by EU and China

On the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’s birth, his hometown unveiled a new statue donated by the Chinese government. The event drew praise from EU and German politicians, as well as outrage from pro-liberty thought leaders across Europe and around the world – especially those who had lived under Communist regimes. Continue Reading...

This board game reveals the horrible truth about socialism

John Elliott and his friends at Diogenes Games created Socialism: The Game as a free-market lampoon of the board game Monopoly. The rules of the interminable Parker Brothers/Hasbro favorite teach children a distorted version of the free market (and its length gives adults a foretaste of Purgatory). Continue Reading...

The trial of Alfie Evans

As this is being written, Alfie Evans is clinging to life, more than 18 hours after medical personnel disconnected life support and left the 23-month-old child to his fate. “For nine hours, Alfie’s been breathing,” wrote his father, Tom Evans, this morning, following an unbroken succession of “horrendous, scary, heartbreaking hours.” The hospital removed Alfie from a ventilator at 9:17 p.m. Continue Reading...