Blog author: jcarter
Monday, June 20, 2016

One State Is Making It Easier for Government to Take Property
Melissa Quinn, The Daily Signal

Over the last two years, the shortfalls of the civil forfeiture system have garnered attention from both the media and state and federal lawmakers as more and more people who had property seized by police have come forward—the vast majority of whom were never charged with a crime.

I’m a rocket scientist designing wood stoves that burn without smoking–to save lives and save the planet
Ryan Gist, Quartz

“Where did you put the smoke?” When you hear that, you know a village demo is going well. It’s one of the best reactions we get in the field when we take our stove out into a public space, light a fire with a few pieces of wood, and gather a crowd just as a bright orange flame pops out from the top of the unit.

Would Money For Nothing Make Us Happy and Free?
Michael Gibson, FEE

The fatal flaw in the futurist case for a universal basic income (UBI).

Five Things You Do That Demonstrate How Profitable You Are
Anne Bradley, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Most of us take for granted the abundance we experience every day. It’s a privilege to be able to take these things for granted. We should reflect on the amazing wonders of the modern world, brought to us by the God-given creativity of strangers, that allow us to be so blissfully ignorant. Let’s take a moment to be grateful for them.

On June 16, His Eminence Metropolitan Tarasios of Buenos Aires spoke at Acton University at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids, Michigan. His remarks touched on a wide range of subjects including the upcoming Orthodox Christian council in Crete, which begins on June 19, Catholic-Orthodox relations, and other topics. The American-born bishop serves in the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

According to his official biography, Met. Tarasios was born Peter (Panayiotis) C. Anton in Gary, Indiana, in 1956 to Peter and Angela Anton. The family moved to San Antonio, Texas, in 1960, and young Peter grew up in the Church of St. Sophia in San Antonio. He studied at Hellenic College and Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, as well as Trinity University in San Antonio, the University of Notre Dame in Indiana (M.A. in Theology 1983), the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome, and the Pontifical School of Paleography and Archives at the Vatican. (more…)

Father and son walkingThis Sunday is the day Americans set aside to honor their fathers. Here are 5 facts you should know about dads and Father’s Day.

1. After listening to a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909, Sonora Dodd of Spokane, Wash. wanted a special day to honer her father, a widowed Civil War veteran who was left to raise his six children on a farm. The first Father’s Day celebration, June 17, 1910, was proclaimed by Spokane’s mayor because it was the month of Smart’s birth. The first presidential proclamation honoring fathers was issued in 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson designated the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day. Father’s Day has been celebrated annually since 1972 when President Richard Nixon signed the public law that made it permanent.

2. Based on the unpublished Census data (2008), there are an estimated 70.1 million fathers across the nation. 24.9 million were part of married-couple families with children younger than 18 in 2015. 21 percent were raising three or more children younger than 18 (among married-couple family households only).

Unclear on how capitalism and/or socialism got started? John Green provides a 12-minute crash course that answers how we got from the British East India Company to iPhones and from Karl Marx to Swedish-style socialism.

Warning: Green’s style and digressions can be a bit grating, but overall the material is worth watching. (I’d also recommend increasing YouTube’s speed setting to 1.5 or 2 for faster viewing.)

You don’t necessarily have to be a member of the Libertarian Party to appreciate it. In a new piece for the Federalist, Acton’s director of programs, Paul Bonicelli suggests that there are libertarian questions that voters of all parties should be asking. Libertarians, with a focus on limiting federal power, question the size and scope of the state and its bureaucrats, as anyone supporting individual freedom should.

Some of the questions Bonicelli offers are:

  • Does the U.S. Constitution permit the government to do this?
  • What would this power look like if it were expanded dramatically in scope or in time?
  • Does this power represent the government putting its thumb on the scales to prefer some competitors over others, perhaps based on their relative power and influence?
  • Are we acting out of fear, anger, or self-promotion?
  • Is there any evidence the government is any good at this?
  • What would your worst enemy do with this power?


Blog author: jcarter
Friday, June 17, 2016

Speaker Ryan’s Call For Regulatory Humility
Susan E. Dudley, Forbes

House Speaker Paul Ryan unveiled a new plan yesterday aimed at reviving the stalled economy by reforming the way the federal government regulates.

Federal Court Upholds Regulations That Threaten Open Internet
James Gattuso, The Daily Signal

Sixteen months after the Federal Communications Commission imposed heavy new regulations on broadband services, a federal appeals court—by a 2-1 vote—upheld the new rules.

Philadelphia just passed a landmark soda tax
Chase Purdy, Quartz

The fifth-largest city in the US today (June 16) passed a landmark soda tax proposal that will levy 1.5 cents per liquid ounce on distributors.

Specialization and Trade
Yuval Levin, National Review Online

Arnold Kling—the economist, teacher, blogger, and polymath—has a way of cutting through layers of conventional assumptions and laying bare complex realities. Read more at:

unnamedPoverty award-winning documentary that grew out of the Acton Institute’s PovertyCure initiative, is now available on Netflix.

During the past year the film has been in over 300 screenings around the world attended by more than 21,000 people. But now we have an opportunity to spread  the key message of the film to a larger audience: the most effective solutions to poverty lie in unleashing entrepreneurs to find new, innovative, and efficient ways to meet people’s needs.

Please help us spread the word by telling your friends, co-workers, and family about Poverty, Inc.’s availability on Netflix. And if you don’t have Netflix you can also find the documentary for sale or rent on Amazon Instant Video, iTunes, YouTube, Google Play, PlayStation Store, Vimeo On Demand, or Vudu.