Russell Kirk: Where does virtue come from?

“How can human society form and raise up virtuous people?” asks Barton Gingerich in this week’s Acton Commentary. As Gingerich notes, Russell Kirk explored this perennial question in a 1982 essay titled, “Virtue: Can It Be Taught?” Continue Reading...

The spiritual core of political hate

“A new study confirms that creeping tribalism has Americans bitterly divided, acrimonious, and dismissive of others based on political differences,” says Rev. Ben Johnson in this week’s Acton Commentary. “Behind this animosity lies a spiritual principle that Rev. Continue Reading...

Alexis de Tocqueville, socialism, and the American Way

Tocqueville determined that the one defining factor in the United States was equality of condition, says John Wilsey in this week’s Acton Commentary. Tocqueville noticed that Americans apparently had the singular ability to prevent equality of conditions from yielding democratic despotism. Continue Reading...

5 ways the West gets African development all wrong

“In the last few weeks, Africa witnessed two major events that could influence the continent’s economic landscape in the coming decades,” says Ibrahim B. Anoba in this week’s Acton Commentary. First was the visit by British Prime Minister Theresa May and her pledge of $5.1 billion in investments continent-wide, as the UK prepares for life after Brexit. Continue Reading...

Look to the Dutch for true educational pluralism

“During the seven-decade political struggle in the Netherlands to allow parents to select schools corresponding to their religious convictions, Abraham Kuyper articulated a concept of “sphere sovereignty” that translates, in policy terms, into principled structural pluralism,” says Charles L. Continue Reading...

Walmart’s T-shirt homage to mass murder

It is extremely concerning and offensive to find Walmart and other retailers promoting what they call “cool shirts“ — bright red tees emblazoned with the Soviet hammer and sickle, says Mari-Ann Kelam in this week’s Acton Commentary. Continue Reading...

The bright side of the trade war with China?

“This year marks the 40th anniversary of one of the most consequential anti-poverty programs in human history,” says Rev. Ben Johnson in this week’s Acton Commentary. “Now, there is evidence that its spillover effects may lift millions more out of dire need.” Continue Reading...