Category: Video

Throughout his presidential campaign Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed that Mexico is “killing us on trade” because of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

This metaphor of trade as war or conflict is a common trope among leftists. But is it true? Are Americans harmed by trade deficits?

As Johan Norberg explains this notion is “dead wrong.” And to see why we just have to look at the iPhone.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, July 22, 2016

People have strong opinions on a variety of subjects in which they don’t have an advanced degree or training. Yet when it comes to economics many people defer to “experts.”

But as Ha-Joon Chang, a South Korean economist who specializes in development, says, “Economics is for everyone.” Chang argues that we shouldn’t rely on experts to tell us what is true about economics (because they probably don’t know) but instead rely on our own commonsense to help us make sense of a complicated world.

While you likely won’t agree with everything Chang says in this short video, it’s worth watching to hear why ordinary citizens should challenge professional economists.

On June 17th, Acton Institute President and Co-founder Rev. Robert A. Sirico delivered the final evening plenary address of Acton University 2016. We’re pleased to present the video of his address here on the PowerBlog.

In a weekend, Pokémon GO has already taken our smartphones by storm. But where did it come from?

On the one hand, this is a simple question to answer: Nintendo. Pokémon is a game franchise created by Nintendo, and Pokémon GO is the newest installment.

But Pokémon GO isn’t just more of the same. It’s a revolutionary innovation.

Using the camera function on people’s phones, the world of the game is our world. The eponymous monsters appear on the screen as hiding in plain sight. People catch them, train them, fight them, trade them, and so on, just like in previous games. But now the game itself is causing people to get out of their homes and see new scenery, meet new people. (more…)

On Thursday, June 16th, it was a great pleasure to welcome William B. Allen – Emeritus Professor of Political Philosophy and Emeritus Dean of James Madison College at Michigan State University – as a plenary speaker at Acton University 2016, to deliver an address entitled “A Moral Surprise: The Common Foundation of Christianity and Modern Politics.” Allen used his address to argue that true political freedom requires freedom of conscience as its foundation – a freedom of conscience that cannot itself be the product of political freedom, but is rather a divinely ordained gift. You can view his presentation below; Allen has also graciously provided the text of his presentation as well, which you can download here. And after the jump, I’ve included the video of Allen’s 2014 Acton Lecture Series presentation, which he references during his speech.


Student debt has become a hot issue this election season, with both Democratic candidates — Clinton and Sanders — offering proposals for forgiving student loans.

But what would happen if the U.S. actually forgave student debt? Would the loans simply vanish? Would tuition prices decline?

Economist Don Boudreaux explains what really happens and why “debt forgiveness” merely transfers the debt to others.

Acton University is a unique conference, a fact noted by Nobel Economics Laureate Vernon L. Smith, who used his appearance on Wednesday, June 15 as an opportunity to “speak on a topic that my fellow economists would never have asked me to speak on”: religious faith and its compatibility with modern science.

We’re pleased to present Smith’s lecture below.