Pope Francis, Manzoni’s The Betrothed, and sound economics

Alessandro Manzoni Alessandro Manzoni, an Italian poet and novelist, is best known for his book The Betrothed.  Rev. Robert Sirico, president and co-founder of the Acton Institute, recently wrote an article for Crisis Magazine praising Manzoni and discussing some of the economic themes found in The BetrothedContinue Reading...

Does globalization destroy culture?

Globalization is routinely decried for its disruptive effects, particularly as it relates to local culture and community enterprises and institutions. Even as it’s proven to drive significant economic growth, questions remain about its steamrolling influence on the culture. Continue Reading...

Providence, presidents, and the fundamental fallacy of pop economics

When running for president, candidates often makes outlandish promises about how we’ll benefit once they have power. For instance, vice-presidential candidate John Edwards said in 2004 that, “when John Kerry is president people like [quadriplegic actor] Christopher Reeve will get up out of that wheelchair and walk again.” And in 2008, then-candidate Barak Obama said we’ll look back on his winning the Democratic nomination as the moment “when the rise of the oceans began to slow and the planet began to heal.” The most absurd claims, though, are often about matters of economics. Continue Reading...

The end of black conservatism?

On December 27, 2016, at the age of 86, Thomas Sowell published his last column. After publishing dozens of books and hundreds of columns, Dr. Sowell’s retirement may mark the beginning of the end of an era of black intellectuals who were champions of political and economic liberty. Continue Reading...

5 victims of the $15 minimum wage

As protests for a $15-per-hour minimum wage continue to rage across the country, cities like Seattle and states like California and New York have already begun to adopt such schemes. But alas, prices are not play things, and such measures are bound to reap a range of deleterious effects, from raised consumer prices to increased unemployment to reduced working hours to outright business closures. Continue Reading...

Is ‘fair trade’ fair?

Most consumers have heard of fair-trade coffee, but have no idea how fair-trade actually works. In this video, economist Victor Claar covers the basics of the fair-trade model, and explores whether fair trade can deliver on its promises to help the poor. Continue Reading...