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What is the difference between propriety and virtue, and how does this relate to the constant abuse of free speech we see today? According to economist and philosopher, Adam Smith, propriety is the extent to which our actions accord with social expectations; which themselves are subjective and you could say are relationally determined. Virtue, on the other hand, is the extent to which an action is well-intended and the extent to which it produces that intended result.
Acton Line brings you a conversation with Acton Institute’s Dylan Pahman, research fellow, and Eric Kohn, director of communications. Pahman is also the managing editor of the Journal of Markets and Morality, a peer reviewed academic journal published by The Acton Institute, that promotes intellectual exploration of the relationship between economics and morality from both a social science and theological perspective.
In this episode, Acton Institute president and co-founder Rev. Robert Sirico joins John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods, to discuss Mackey’s new book, “Conscious Leadership.” This conversation was part of Acton Institute’s Business Matters online conference. Leading experts and CEOs discussed the current challenges, and ethical principles needed for businesses to thrive in the midst of COVID-19, civil unrest, and political turmoil.
In this episode, we are bringing you a conversation with Stephanie Slade, the managing editor of Reason Magazine, and Eric Kohn, the director of communications here at Acton. In this episode they discuss the philosophy of fusionism.
Slade writes that Fusionism is the marriage of two value sets: liberty & virtue. “Liberty – in the classical sense of freedom from aggression, coercion, and fraud; and virtue – in the Judeo-Christian sense of submission to God’s commands.” In this unifying value set, we can see fusionism as a “distinct philosophical orientation unto itself.”
To listen to economic nationalists, national conservatives and certain politicians, you would believe that we’re in a period of mass deindustrialization. Employment in American manufacturing has been declining since the early 1980s. And manufacturing’s share of the economy has been declining since 1970. These trends, they argue, pose not just social and economic challenges to the country, but national security challenges, as well.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and governments across the country ordered most businesses closed, people have increasingly turned to online services like Amazon to meet their needs. As a result, Amazon’s sales soared as the company reported a 37% increase in revenue in the third quarter of 2020, with total revenues north of $96 billion. This, in turn, has led to some increased scrutiny on people like outgoing Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, whose personal net worth increased by at least $28 billion since the onset of the pandemic.
Over the course of two weeks in January 2021, the stock price for GameStop – the brick-and-mortar video game retailer – rose by a shocking 1,500 percent. Suddenly, a handful of hedge funds who had shorted GameStop’s stock, betting that the stock price would go down, found themselves the victim of what’s called a short squeeze.
This conversation with Tim Carney, editor at the Washington Examiner and a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, explores the subject matter of his 2019 book, “Alienated America: Why Some Places Thrive While Others Collapse.”
Today’s episode is a rebroadcast that originally aired in March of 2019, but holds incredible relevance to conversations we’re still having today.
Social capital – the capacity of people to cooperate towards common aims – is an indispensable element of a free and prosperous society yet many studies demonstrate that it has been steadily eroded in recent decades.
Social pathologies such as the breakdown of the family, addiction, and deaths of despair are strongly correlated with weakening social ties and norms. The decline in social capital has had devastating real world consequences.
Common Grace is both a theological doctrine within the reformed tradition and the title of a truly monumental book discussing the doctrine by the theologian and statesmen Abraham Kuyper. It is grace from God that is common to all of mankind distinct from both the special grace by which God redeems, sanctifies, and glorifies his people as well as the gift of creation itself.