Archived Posts April 2005 » Page 8 of 9 | Acton PowerBlog

Blog author: jballor
posted by on Thursday, April 7, 2005

Think governmental corruption is only a problem in the developing world? Think again. The American media are beginning to cover a burgeoning scandal in Canada. The Canadian media, meanwhile, have been stifled by an order from a Canadian judge limiting the dissemination of information, so as to not prejudice potential jurors. Check out the latest developments over at Captain’s Quarters.

As Osvaldo Schenone and Samuel Gregg write in A Theory of Corruption, “We must recognize that all societies, no matter how sound their moral and institutional cultures, are in some way marked by corrupt activities.” It’s only too true.

HT: hubs and spokes

Blog author: kschmiesing
posted by on Thursday, April 7, 2005

Jonah Goldberg on NRO takes issue with interpreting the pope according to left-right categories. Here’s the last paragraph:

“Some of John Paul the Great’s detractors saw his ‘social conservatism’ as a contradiction to his criticism of capitalism run amok, or regarded his opposition to the death penalty as at odds with his opposition to abortion. John Paul confounded so many because his views on these and other issues were unswervingly consistent with a vision of the world bound not by the ideological categories of the moment but by the standards of eternity. My guess is his vision will be debated long after words like right and left have melted away like the snows of Canossa.”

Crux Magazine, a new e-zine and sister publication of Touchstone Magazine, has an insightful analysis and summary of some of the recent trends in scientific studies of religion. In “Survival of the Metaphysically Fittest,” John D. Martin examines conclusions about religion and evolution: “To put it as bluntly as possible, non-religious persons, in purely evolutionary terms, experience a significant selection disadvantage in terms of longevity and reproductive success. The irreligious live shorter lives, less healthy lives, produce fewer offspring, and provide less stable, less healthy family environments for those offspring.”
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Blog author: jballor
posted by on Thursday, April 7, 2005

“Where did Pope John Paul II stand on economic issues?” Father Robert Sirico answers this question in an article appearing today on National Review Online, “Papal Economics 101: Freedom and truth.”

Blog author: jballor
posted by on Wednesday, April 6, 2005

Law professor Ronald J. Rychlak discusses some of the developments in tort law in the United States, as well as some of the proposed reforms. “As legislators and other lawmakers consider future planned reforms to the tort system, the goal must be to return to a system which affirms the dignity and intrinsic value of the person and the community by placing blame only on those who cause damage, not simply on those who have deep pockets,” he writes.

Read the full text here.

Rev. Zandstra discusses the experiences of his life, which led him “from an interest to a profound appreciation for Pope John Paul II.”

Read the full text here.

Blog author: jballor
posted by on Wednesday, April 6, 2005

This month’s School Reform News, a publication of the Heartland Institute, has an interview with J.C. Huizenga, member of the Acton Institute’s Board of Directors, as well as founder and chairman of the National Heritage Academies, “Bringing the Profit Motive and Moral Values to Education.”

Blog author: kwoods
posted by on Wednesday, April 6, 2005

Tuesday’s Washington Post says that Internal Revenue Commissioner Mark Everson is the government official to help us make sure that our contributions are received by legitimate charities. In a letter to the Senate Finance Committee, which is currently discussing increased charity regulation, Everson noted, “We can see that tax abuse is increasingly present in the [Exempt Organization] sector,” and unless the government takes effective steps to curb it, such organizations risk “the loss of the faith and support that the public has always given to this sector.”

But the reality of increased government revenue to be had rather than good faith may be the more immediate issue. According to Chairman Grassley, those revenues can offset the costs of the CARE Act [current legislation that provides increased tax advantages for human service charity donors].
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Yesterday, The Connection with Dick Gordon, an NPR program, had two Catholic intellectuals on the show to discuss “John Paul II’s Life and Legacy.” What was troubling was the way these professors described the pope’s economic thought. The guests were Lisa Sowle Cahill, professor of theology at Boston College, and Lawrence Cunningham, professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame. You can listen to the broadcast here at the show’s website. Below is a rough transcript of the relevant portions of the exchange, beginning at about the 17 minute mark, followed by my response.
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Blog author: jballor
posted by on Tuesday, April 5, 2005

There’s a provocative post from Bryan Caplan over at EconLog about “the odd factoid that faith in government dramatically increased after 9/11.”