Archived Posts November 2012 - Page 8 of 17 | Acton PowerBlog

Rev. Robert Sirico, President of the Acton Institute and Jeff Sandefer, entrepreneur, teacher and educational innovator, have co-authored the new book, “The Field Guide to the Hero’s Journey: inspirational classics and practical advice from a serial entrepreneur and an entrepreneurial priest”. The book is set to be released in early December.

Rev. Sirico and Mr. Sandefer sat down to discuss their collaboration.

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Blog author: mhornak
Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Acton Institute is pleased to announce that registration is now open for the 2013 Acton University (AU), which will take place on June 18-21 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Space and scholarship funds are limited – so register or apply now! Please visit where you will find the online registration form along with complete conference information.

The Goldwater Institute has released a new study showing that states with a larger share of entrepreneurs do a better job at reducing poverty than states with fewer entrepreneurs.

There is a strong connection between a state’s rate of entrepreneurship and declines in poverty. Statistical analysis of all 50 states indicates that states with a larger share of entrepreneurs had bigger declines in poverty. In fact, comparing states during the last economic boom—from 2001 to 2007—data show that for every 1 percentage point increase in the rate of entrepreneurship in a state, there is a 2 percent decline in the poverty rate.

To help reduce poverty, policymakers should focus on increasing the number of entrepreneurs in their state. Research shows that one of the most effective ways to increase entrepreneurship is by lowering tax burdens. In particular, this study shows that high tax burdens, measured as a percentage of personal income, drags down the growth rate of entrepreneurship in a state: for every 1 percentage point increase in the tax burden, there’s a corresponding 1 percentage point drop in the entrepreneurship rate. States without income taxes also have higher average rates of entrepreneurship than those with income taxes. The average number of sole proprietors as a percentage of employment in states without an income tax is 21.7. The rate for states with an income tax is 19.6.

You can access a PDF of the report here.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, November 15, 2012

Waning evangelical influence
Anthony Bradley, World

With these cultural dynamics, Republicans, in order to take back the White House, are going to have to start appealing to their new actual base: deistic fiscal moderates.

Papal nuncio: Catholic division undermines religious freedom
Catholic News Service

Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano has told the University of Notre Dame that there is a concrete “menace” to religious liberty in the U.S. that is advancing in part because some influential Catholic public figures and university professors are allied with those opposed to Church teaching.

Failing School Ranks Every Teacher and Principal ‘Highly Effective’
Tom Gantert, Michigan Capital Confidential

State has Hazel Park schools as failing, but its teachers all get highest marks

3 Tips from Proverbs About Finances
Robert Waruszewski, Ignitum Today

Life can change in an instant. That “secure” job you had today could be gone to tomorrow. The home you worked diligently to own could be gone in the blink of an eye through a natural disaster.

We need to trim government programs today in order make way for bigger government tomorrow.

That seems to be the message former treasury secretary and Obama economic advisor Larry Summers delivered today at the Washington Ideas Forum:

“If we want to have the same kind of society we always had…you may see some upward drift in government,” he said. “That’s why you need to work ever harder to eliminate government activities that don’t need to take place.”

Summers deserves credit for attempting to incorporate reality into the liberal economic worldview. Government will have to take an increasing share of GDP just to keep up with the growth of current government programs. But we can’t afford the programs we have now, which means we must, as Summers says, “eliminate government activities that don’t need to take place.”

But his message will fall on deaf progressive ears. Liberals are generally opposed to giving up any government funding of private activities, much less give up actual government activities. Remember just a few weeks ago when President Obama mocked the idea of defunding PBS? And the mere suggestion of cutting off taxpayer funds for the president’s favorite billion dollar corporation—Planned Parenthood—causes him to reach for his veto pen.

American liberalism suffers from a political paradox: There is no realistic way for America to keep paying for all the programs liberals want to keep—and there is no realistic scenario in which American liberals voluntarily give up any of those programs. Unfortunately, the only resolution to the problem will be an economic crisis that leads to forced austerity measure. That’s the future reality all of us will be forced to contend with tomorrow since liberals refuse to contend with present realities today.

Because it is right, because it is wise, and because, for the first time in our history, it is possible to conquer poverty … Lyndon B. Johnson’s Special Message to Congress, March 16, 1964

Anthony Bradley, commenting on the preference black voters showed for President Obama, points out that Lyndon Baines Johnson’s War on Poverty policies “introduced perverse incentives against saving money, starting businesses, getting married, and they discouraged fathers from being physically and emotionally present for their children — resulting in generational welfare dependence — black voters are lured to choose dependence over liberation.” The full text of his essay follows. The full text of his essay follows. Subscribe to the free, weekly Acton News & Commentary and other publications here.


Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Catholic bishops fail to agree on statement on the economy

A divided Catholic hierarchy on Tuesday (Nov. 13) failed to agree on a statement about the economy after a debate that revealed sharp differences over the kind of social justice issues that were once a hallmark of the bishops’ public profile.

When the Gospel Invades Your Office
Matt Smethurst interviews Tim Keller, The Gospel Coalition

God put work into the Garden of Eden, so work must be an enormous good, something that fits and fulfills part of our design.

Obama, Religious Liberty, And The Constitution
James Poulos, Forbes

The upshot of America’s pro-religious culture and founding law is simple: a practical resistance to drawing bright lines between entities that ‘are’, in some metaphysical way, secular, and those that ‘are’ religious.

Church cannot live with contraception mandate, bishops say
Michelle Bauman, Catholic news Agency

In the aftermath of the Nov. 6 elections, the U.S. bishops stressed that they will push ahead with defending religious liberty from the Obama administration’s contraception mandate, which cannot be lived with as it stands.