Category: General

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, October 11, 2012
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C.S. Lewis may not have written specifically about economics, but as Harold B. Jones Jr. explains, there’s reason to consider him a defender of the free market:

. . . C. S. Lewis had much in common with the great free-market thinkers of his time. He is discovered on careful examination to have been writing about many of the same issues as Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek and on these issues to have been in perfect agreement with them. The dates are worth considering. Bureaucracy, one of Mises’s critiques of governmental economic intervention, came out in 1944. Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom came out the same year. Lewis had released The Abolition of Man only a year before, and in the year that followed his That Hideous Strength made its debut. All these books were written to defend the idea of the individual human being as the locus of rational choice and moral responsibility. Mises and Hayek wrote as economists and Lewis as a lay theologian, but all three wrote to challenge the assault on human nature in the name of a false ideal.

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Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, October 11, 2012
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The Economics of John Calvin
Timothy Terrell, Economics for Everybody

Ask someone what Calvinism has to do with economics, and you’ll probably get a blank stare.

European Parliament holds seminar on Discrimination of Christians in Europe
Russian Orthodox Church

Organized together by parliamentarians from the European People’s Party, the Alliance of European Conservatives and Reformists and the Catholic Commission of Bishops’ Conferences, the EU seminar gathered together several hundred participants from among European deputies, experts in the religious and legal field, politicians, public figures and clergy.

Productivity and Grace: Management and Labor at a Denver Manufacturer
Chris Horst, Christianity Today

Steve Hill and Jim Howey’s leadership style is unusual in an industry known for top-down hierarchies.

Working Towards Hope and A Future
Anne Bradley, Institute for Faith, Work & Economics

As Christians, we know that we are working in the Kingdom of Christ through our families, our churches and our work. God is building his kingdom, and uses us as the hands and feet of this enterprise.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
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Religious Freedom at the Ballot Box
Jonathan S. Tobin, Commentary

Just as significant [as the HHS mandate] is a referendum battle in Florida that will not only help determine the future of religious liberty in this country, but whether we are capable of facing up to our troubled past.

The Four Twisted Truths of Marx
Elise Amyx, Institute for Faith, Work & Economics

The father of communism, Karl Marx, announced his object in life was to “dethrone God and destroy capitalism”. If Marx really wanted to dethrone God, shouldn’t it be disturbing that some Christians support his ideology?

In Texas, Cheerleaders’ Signs of Faith at Issue
Manny Fernandez, New York Times

School district officials ordered the cheerleaders to stop putting Bible verses on the banners, because they believed doing so violated the law on religious expression at public school events.

What Kills Small Businesses? Let’s Ask Them
Ron Faucheux, The Atlantic

Burdensome government regulations and a hyperactive legal culture topped the list of scourges in this new survey.

Blog author: Mindy Hirst
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
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When my kids go to the pediatrician it is a mad house while we are waiting for the doctor to come in. All three of my kids are doing the random dance. The oldest is behind the bench inspecting the lamp, the youngest is hopping from one book to another spread out on the floor and the boy is using the bean bag chair as a fort.

When the doctor comes in, they all start talking to her at once as if she had six ears and three brains all equally engaged in each of their conversations. I am not totally convinced that this isn’t the case. One by one she checks their eyes, their ears, their walks, asks questions, listens intently and seems completely at home in the din of the kid-noise.

Then comes the blessed moments when she checks their hearts. She puts the stethoscope into her ears, gently rests the chestpiece on their bodies and closes her eyes. The room goes silent. Everyone is entranced by the peace that fills the room, and I always wonder what is going on in that moment. Is she counting? What is she listening for?

Recently, we did an interview with Dr. Pam Casson, pediatrician, asking her about what being On Call in Culture meant for her. In it she explained these special moments in the office. I was at once touched but unsurprised at what she shared. In those moments, she was talking to God. Of course she was! It made so much sense. She said that she asks God for two things: to capture that child’s heart and to allow her to hear any abnormalities.

We have been talking about how when we do our work well we are blessing the world. But in these moments, Pam has discovered how to offer a double blessing to the world God has put her in. Not only is she treating or maintaining the health of her patients, but she is looking toward their spiritual health as well.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
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Business Declares the Glory of God
Nathan Clarke, Christianity Today

How real-estate developer Walter Crutchfield’s gift at making money became a vocation.

Religious views should be welcomed in our public life
Interview with John Witte Jr., Faith & Leadership

Religion should be part of our political and legal conversation, says a law and religion scholar. Yes, it can make politics and lawmaking more complicated and contested, but also more realistic.

Obama’s Bible Issue
Kathryn Jean Lopez, National Review Online

So why isn’t a publisher of Bibles eligible for a religious exemption from HHS?

10 Simple Ways to Teach Your Kids About Economics
Thomas Purifoy, Economics for Everybody

Basic economics is actually pretty easy to understand if you put it in the right perspective. In other words, move it out of the world of abstract concepts and make it concrete. This is especially important for children.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, October 8, 2012
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How Do We Recover the Moral Foundations of Economics?
E. Calvin Beisner, Economics for Everybody

In Christian ethics, two virtues stand supreme: justice (or righteousness) and love (or grace). The moral economy will take both of these into account. It will not reward injustice or hate, but will reward justice and love.

Four Questions About Faith & Work
Hugh Whelchel, Institute for Faith, Work & Economics

No church-related work or mission is more spiritual than any other profession such as law, business, education, journalism, politics, plumbing, or being a janitor.

Governing the Medical Profession: Obamacare and New Governance
Michael Fragoso, Public Discourse

Obamacare purports to improve medical quality through dynamic processes that involve government-supported private actors, quality benchmarks, and participation by practitioners and patients.

Religious Liberty of Illinois Pharmacists Vindicated
Dominique Ludvigson, The Foundry

Illinois bureaucrats’ senseless, now seven-year-long crusade to crush the faith-based conscience rights of two pharmacists hit another snag recently when a state appellate court ruled that they could not be forced to stock and dispense abortion-inducing drugs in violation of their religious beliefs.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, October 5, 2012
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Economist Bryan Caplan sets out to prove that basic economics is intuitive:

To make my prima facie case, I’m going to present a few allegedly counterintuitive economic propositions, then explain them at a 6th-grade level.

1. Counterintuitive claim: Free trade makes countries richer, even if the other countries have big advantages like cheaper labor or more advanced technology.

Intuitive version: We’d be better off if other countries gave us stuff for free. Isn’t “really cheap” the next-best thing?

2. Counterintuitive claim: Strict labor market regulation is bad for workers.

Intuitive version: Employers don’t like hiring people if it’s hard to get rid of them. Suppose you had to marry anyone you asked out on a date!

3. Counterintuitive claim: Egalitarian socialism creates poverty… even starvation.

Intuitive version: If everyone gets the same share whether or not they work, you’re asking people to work for free. People don’t like working for free, especially when the work isn’t very fun. (This is my response to Sumner’s Great Leap Forward Challenge: “But how do we explain to school children that millions had to starve because of a policy that encouraged people to share?”)

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