The beauty of trade: How sharing creates civilization and culture

In our complex and globalized economy, it can be hard to remember that trade and markets are fundamentally about relationships—channels for human interaction in pursuit of goods and services. That basic reality may be easier to see and feel at the local farmer’s market or the neighborhood diner, but it nonetheless translates across more intricate and extensive networks of exchange. Continue Reading...

Don’t save Barnes & Noble!

First it happened to Toys ‘R’ Us, but we did nothing (except complain). Now it may be happening to Barnes & Noble, and we will do nothing again. (Nothing except complain, that is. Continue Reading...

Bernie Sanders, jobs, and what work really is

‘Bernie Sanders at a rally in New Orleans, Louisiana, July 26, 2015’ by Nick Solari CC BY-SA 2.0 Last month the Washington Post reported, “Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) will announce a plan for the federal government to guarantee a job paying $15 an hour and health-care benefits to every American worker “who wants or needs one,”…” These jobs would be the product of hundreds of government projects initiated in, “…infrastructure, care giving, the environment, education and other goals.” The projects, their costs, and how they would be financed have yet to be disclosed. Continue Reading...

Urban revival in the Midwest: What does it mean for freedom?

We’ve long heard about the incessant flow of America’s best and brainiest to the country’s largest urban centers. As such cities continue to rise in population and prominence—from Los Angeles and San Francisco to New York City, Boston, and Washington, D.C.—fears continue to loom about the power of “coastal elites” and the future of America’s “middle.” Those concerns have merit, of course. Continue Reading...

Is economics an ideology?

‘Ludwig von Mises’ by Ludwig von Mises Institute CC BY-SA 3.0 Richard H. Spady, research professor of Economics at Johns Hopkins, has recently published a piece at First Things entitled ‘Economics as Ideology’ in which he explores some contemporary trends among economists and their use of economics as a Procrustean bed to reshape society in its own image, A body of thought is “ideological” when it will­fully projects its own first principles on its subject matter and actively seeks, perhaps unconsciously, material changes to bring social realities into conformity with these first principles. Continue Reading...