How a universal income could discourage meaningful work

In his popular book, Coming Apart, Charles Murray examined the key drivers of America’s growing cultural divide, concluding that America is experiencing an “inequality of human dignity.” Such a divide, Murray argues, is due to a gradual cultural drift from our nation’s “founding virtues,” one of which is “industriousness.” “Working hard, seeking to get ahead, and striving to excel at one’s craft are not only quintessential features of traditional American culture but also some of its best features,” Murray writes in his chapter on the subject. Continue Reading...

What you should know about Jubilee Years

The Year of Jubilee, by Henry Le Jeune (1905)   One of the earliest economic programs mentioned in the Bible is the Year of Jubilee. In the Jubilee Year, as William Baur explains, all land would automatically revert to its original owner (Leviticus 25:10; 25:13), and those who, compelled by poverty, had sold themselves as slaves to their brothers, should regain their liberty (Leviticus 25:10; 25:39). Continue Reading...

The economics of Bedford Falls (Part 3 of 3)

[Note: This is the final post in a series highlighting some of the financial aspects and broad economic lessons of Frank Capra’s holiday classic, It’s a Wonderful Life. You can find part one here and part two here.] Economist Don Boudreaux outlined ten foundational lessons that should be learned in every well-taught principles of economics course. Continue Reading...

Is it immoral to waste food?

“Eat your broccoli,” our mothers would say. “Think of the starving children in Africa!” It’s a moral claim we’re all familiar with. If some of our food goes to waste, someone, somewhere, will face imminent harm and the environment will go to the dogs. Continue Reading...