Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Post Tagged 'Sociology'

Why Does No One Believe Extreme Poverty Has Declined?

Would you say that over the past three decades (since about the mid-1980s) the percentage of people in the world who live in extreme poverty — defined as living on less than $1.25 per day — has: A) Increased B) Decreased C) remained the same The right answer is B: extreme poverty has decreased by more than half. Continue Reading...

Conservatives Have the Right Answers on Poverty

From the fiscal to the familial, conservatives have the right answers, says Kevin D. Williamson: The conservative hesitancy to put the issue of poverty at the center of our domestic economic agenda, rather than tax rates or middle-class jobs, is misguided — politically as well as substantively. Continue Reading...

Marx Redivivus?

Ross Douthat (a scheduled plenary speaker at this year’s Acton University) has a noteworthy piece this week about the revival of sorts of Karl Marx: “Marxist ideas are having an intellectual moment, and attention must be paid.” He looks at Marxism among Millennials, who perhaps can be excused for not knowing any better given their relative youth and the education many have received. Continue Reading...

Poverty Is Expensive

There are several ways to understand that poverty is expensive. First poor people pay more for the things they buy or they find that cheap stuff is not good. The poor find it hard to pay for housing which leads to having a harder time saving money even by cooking. Continue Reading...

Crony Capitalism’s Favorite Trick

Many who reject capitalism in favor of some “third way” do so because they often mistake it for government-corporate cronyism, says Jonathan Witt in this week’s Acton Commentary. But in countries that have begun extending true economic freedom to the masses, capitalist activity has already lifted hundreds of millions of people out of extreme poverty. Continue Reading...

Lorde, Poverty, and Envy

At Reason Thaddeus Russell argues that Macklemore and Lorde embody a kind of progressive cultural critique of capitalism, captured in the attack on “conspicuous consumption” made famous by Thorstein Veblen. Russell traces the “progressive lineage” of this critique: “Their songs continue a long tradition, rooted in progressivism, of protests against the pleasures of the poor.” Having never listened to him, I have no opinion about Macklemore. Continue Reading...

Bill Gates on Poverty and Inequality

In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Bill Gates — the richest man in the world — shares his thoughts on poverty and inequality: Should the state be playing a greater role in helping people at the lowest end of the income scale? Continue Reading...