Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Post Tagged 'ethics'

Envy and Wanting What Others Have

Over at the University Bookman today, I review John Lanchester’s novel Capital. I recommend the book. I don’t explore it in the review, “Capital Vices and Commercial Virtues,” but for those who have been following the antics of Banksy, there is a similar performance artist character in the novel that has significance for the development of the narrative. Continue Reading...

Surplus = Happiness, Deficit = Misery

Wilkins Micawber, the namesake for the Micawber Principle.Joe Carter points to a Lifehacker article that sums up two basic equations that lead to the creation of wealth (with what I consider to be a clarifying correction applied in the first formula): Income spending = surplus Surplus x time = wealth Likewise, Wilhelm Röpke, in his A Humane Economy, points to two equations arising from classical literature that connect surplus with happiness and deficit to misery (the Micawber Principle). Continue Reading...

Why Has the Economic Recovery Bypassed Young People?

In his latest column, Tyler Cowen points out that whatever economic recovery we’ve experienced has “largely bypassed young people,” arguing that such a development is bound to have an impact for years to come: For Americans aged 16 to 24 who aren’t enrolled in school, the employment picture is grim. Continue Reading...

Maximizing Labor, Minimizing Wages

For this week’s Acton Commentary, ahead of Labor Day weekend, I write about “working harder and smarter,” lessons we can learn from Ashton Kutcher and Mike Rowe. One of the implications of connecting hard work with smart work is that the difficulty of work on its own does not determine its value in the marketplace. Continue Reading...

The Future is Paranoia

We know the government is listening, watching, gathering information. We know that we’re being told it’s all for our own good; after all, who wants to miss a possible terrorist attack? Continue Reading...

India Is To Surrogacy As Detroit Was To Cars

That’s the conclusion Wesley J. Smith, J.D., Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute, has come to. The surrogacy business in India is booming. While statistics are hard to come by, according to one estimate, surrogacy brings in more than $2 billion a year to India.  Continue Reading...

The McDouble and the Minimum Wage

The protests organized by labor organizations to advocate for an increase in the minimum wage have garnered attention, most recently from the NYT, which editorialized in favor of such moves. Over at Think Christian, I weigh in with an attempt to provide some more of the complex context behind the moral evaluation of such mandates. Continue Reading...