Latest Posts

The numbers game: Has the middle class made any economic progress?

In the Age of Information, we face an overwhelming barrage of high-minded studies and reports that claim to offer the final word on this or that. As it relates to matters of economic policy, we are pressed to lend ever increasing amounts of trust to the power of statistical analysis and the reliability of research from a variety of academics and economic planners and soothsayers. Continue Reading...

PowerLinks 12.13.17

Notes from Reality About Economic Regulation: What’s Wrong with First Things’ Anxious Anti-Capitalism Robert T. Miller, Public Discourse R.R. Reno’s manifesto on capitalism—in which he concludes, among other things, that expanding economic freedom leads to transgenderism—is based on empirically false claims. Continue Reading...
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Who really benefits from Poland’s Sunday shopping ban?

Poland may soon ban shopping on Sundays. On Friday, November 24, the lower house of the Polish legislature (the Sejm) approved a Sunday shopping ban, 254-156. The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) Party has presented this as a way to uphold the nation’s Catholic character, but some on the ground warn there is more to the commerce ban than meets the eye. Continue Reading...

The cost of Twelve Days of Christmas: $34,558.65

  If you’ve been stuck at the mall listening to a song about ten Lords a-Leaping and eight Maids a-Milking you can blame the Jesuits. Rumor has it they invented the Twelve Days of Christmas song as a catechism in code for persecuted Catholics in 16th-century England. Continue Reading...

Public goods and asteroid defense

Note: This is post #60 in a weekly video series on basic microeconomics. While the probability of an asteroid hitting the planet is very low, its effect would be disastrous for all of us. Continue Reading...

PowerLinks 12.12.17

The hard road of free markets John Cochrane, The Grumpy Economist The fundamental reason so many markets are not free, and so dysfunctional, is that the voters of our democracy don’t really want freedom. Continue Reading...
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C.S. Lewis and Brexit: Breaking the spell

Despite his work as an apologist and essayist of the highest order, C.S. Lewis’ most famous work is the Chronicles of Narnia. The Silver Chair, the fourth novel published in the series, provides a good framework to understand the state of the European Union, writes Stephen F. Continue Reading...