A ‘Pinocchio’ Rating for Pope Francis

Sandro Magister, Vatican correspondent for L’Espresso, notes in his Italian blog a recent TV program that “fact checks” the pope’s economics. Here’s a translation of the blog post: In his speeches Pope Francis often puts forth original theories of dubious foundations but that, for him, are of unshakable certainty and explain everything. Continue Reading...

Bob Dylan wins Nobel Prize in Literature

When Bob Dylan wrote, “The Times They Are A Changin’,” I doubt he had the Swedish Academy in mind. Nevertheless, by awarding him the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature the Academy has made a bold statement for a change in the way songwriting is viewed as literature. Continue Reading...

Leaked emails reveal Clinton camp mocked Catholics

Have you ever wondered what liberal political activists and politicians think of Catholics? Well, thanks to Wikileaks you can get a glimpse into their views. In a couple of emails from Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s account there are exchanges in which conservative Catholics are mocked. Continue Reading...

Angus Deaton schools Italians on economics

But was anyone listening? That’s my question after attending the 2015 Nobel-prize-winning economist‘s talk last night in Rome at the Vatican-sponsored Cortile dei gentili (Court of Gentiles). Like the other speakers, Deaton voiced his concerns about income inequality. Continue Reading...

Samuel Gregg on the Regensburg Address, Ratzinger, and reason

In a new article for Public Discourse, Samuel Gregg, the Director of Research at Acton, talks about the “Regensburg Address” and what it means 10 years later.  Benedict XVI’s speech at the University of Regensburg on September 12, 2006 “managed to identify the inner pathology that is corroding much of the world, how this malignancy emerged, and what can be done to address it.” According to Gregg, this speech “showed how a collapse of faith in full-bodied conceptions of reason explains so much of our world’s evident disarray.” But the Roman Pontiff didn’t just pull this idea out of nowhere; this is a concept that has been long featured in Joseph Ratzinger’s writings.    Continue Reading...

The financial mess of the Vatican

Sistine Hall. The finances of the Catholic Church, and more specifically of the Vatican, are quite the mess. When Pope Francis was elected, he recognized this problem and appointed Australian Cardinal George Pell as the inaugural Prefect of the Secretariat of the Economy.  Continue Reading...

The economics of sainthood

On Sunday, Mother Teresa of Calcutta became St. Teresa (though Pope Francis said, “We will continue to call her Mother Teresa.”). Mother Teresa was the 29th saint canonized by Pope Francis during his three-year pontificate. Continue Reading...