In this episode, we dive into some of the profound changes occurring in American society. Back in the day, social scientist Robert Putnam observed a concerning trend—he called it “bowling alone”—where Americans were becoming increasingly disconnected from community bonds and support systems. Fast forward to the present, and we see not only a retreat from these vital sources of communal life but also a rise in loneliness, anxiety, depression, and overall mental and physical distress. Marriage and parenthood are also being delayed or foregone altogether. These developments have far-reaching implications for both American politics and civil life, as well as for the individual’s well-being and fulfillment.


For this episode of Acton Line, we’re bringing you the remarks by Rev. Timothy J. Keller at the Acton Institute’s Annual Dinner in 2018, in which he spoke on identity, business, and the Christian gospel. Keller, the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in NYC, New York Times bestselling author, teacher, and arguably the most influential evangelical preacher of his generation died May 19, 2023, after a three-year struggle with pancreatic cancer. He was 72. He leaves behind his wife of 48 years, Kathy, and three sons: David, Michael, and Jonathan.

Keller’s winsome appeal and professorial demeanor grew an exploratory prayer group in 1989 to a 5,000-plus-member megachurch in the heart of the Big Apple, a supposed desert wasteland for spirituality. His impact on urban church planting, his ability to speak in a forthright and non-condescending manner to skeptics, and his deliberate avoidance of political partisanship were just a few qualities that made him stand out in a world of so-called celebrity preachers and would-be chaplains to the rich and famous. His intellectual curiosity wedded to a personal humility were also hallmarks of his unique ministry.

There’s been much discussion of how “wokeness,” for lack of a better term, operates as a form of civic religion for the political left. Less discussed, according to Jack Butler of National Review, is the emerging form or forms of paganism on the political right.


We live in what appears at first glance to be a highly skeptical age, one characterized by moral relativism in public discourse and ‘value-freedom’ in science. But is this really the case? Hadley Arkes believes that, despite many people’s protest to the contrary, what they do is informed–perhaps unwittingly–by an understanding of natural law. In this wide-ranging conversation, the founding director of the James Wilson Institute on Natural Rights and the American Founding unpacks this paradox as explored in his new book, Mere Natural Law: Originalism and the Anchoring Truths of the Constitution.


The last time you took a commercial airline flight, odds are that you were on a plane that was manufactured by one of two companies: American-based Boeing, or French-based Airbus. Together, these two companies have almost the entire market for commercial airplanes.


For this episode of Acton Line, Dylan Pahman, the editor of the Journal of Markets and Morality and a research fellow here at Acton, speaks with Alexander Salter. Salter is the author of the recent article “Free Enterprise and the Common Good,“ published at the Heritage Foundation. The article has generated a lot of buzz, particularly online, where the Salter’s ideas have been the subject of much debate.


For this episode of Acton Line, we’re bringing you a panel discussion from the Grand Rapids edition of the Free Market Road Show, an event the Acton Institue recently co-hosted along with the Austrian Economics Center.


Karl Marx.


Over the course of the last year here at the Acton Institute, we’ve been bringing in local social providers so that our staff can gain a better understanding of the critical work that they do here in the Grand Rapids, Michigan, metro region to help alleviate poverty. Today, Eric Kohn sits down to talk with the leader of one of those social service providers, Trevor Rubingh of New City Kids.


For this episode of Acton Line we’re bringing a panel discussion from the Free Market Road Show – Grand Rapids, a recent special event we hosted here at the Acton Institute in conjunction with the Austrian Economics Center.


A belief in the positive power of free markets has been a part of the political and philosophical program of the political right for virtually all of the post-World War II conservative movement. While elements of protectionism, and even isolationism, have always been currents in the political right, a support for free trade and free markets has been part of the right’s dogma for years.


Religious freedom is a bitterly contested issue that spills over into political, public, and online spheres. It’s an issue that’s becoming ever more heated, and neither of the global political polarities is interested in protecting it. While the political left is openly hostile toward traditional religion, the political right seeks to weaponize it.


Should businesses allow their employees to work remotely? Almost all employers and employees have wrestled with this question. More and more job-seekers are expecting remote-work flexibility, and COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns greatly accelerated this trend. But are employees really as productive working from home? Does remote work hurt company culture? Or could hybrid or remote options make businesses more successful? David Bahnsen, Founder of the Bahnsen Group, argues that remote work should be minimized. Dr. Raj Choudhury, remote work expert at Harvard Business School, argues that businesses should embrace hybrid and remote options. This debate took place as a part of the 2023 Business Matters conference.


When people think of interactions between the police and the public these days, for many, the first thoughts that come to mind are of horrific incidents like the deaths of George Floyd or Brianna Taylor. Here in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where the Acton Institute is headquartered, a police officer is currently awaiting trial in the shooting death of 26-year old Patrick Lyoya.


“The feminine genius,” a term coined by Pope St. John Paul II, has become something of a buzzword in the Catholic world. But has the fullness of femininity been exhausted? In a new collection of seventeen essays entitled With All Her Mind: A Call to the Intellectual Life, written by Catholic women of diverse backgrounds and vocations, you will find a call to pursue what is too often excluded from our picture of femininity: the intellectual life. Following Mary, the “Seat of Wisdom,” who “treasured” the words of the shepherds and “pondered them in her heart,” With All Her Mind shows how the feminine genius involves both affectivity and active intellectual engagement. With practical advice and personal testimonies and featuring a foreword by celebrated scholar Tracey Rowland, this collection opens readers to the endlessly unique ways for a woman to follow the first and greatest commandment: to love the Lord with all her soul, with all her heart, and with all her mind.


In March 2021, Winston Marshall was the banjo player and guitarist for Mumford & Sons, the highly popular and award-winning folk rock ensemble.


If money is the mother’s milk of politics, then rhetoric is its currency. And few political characters of the late 20th century had a sharper wit than former New York City Mayor Ed Koch.


Since debuting in the New York Times Magazine on August 14, 2019, the 1619 Project has ignited a debate about American history, the founding of the country, and the legacy emanating from the nation’s history with chattel slavery.


Colin Duff, a co-founder and head of operations at Styx Golf, delivers a speech on how to align company culture with the human experience to create a compelling vision for employees. He stresses the significance of identifying a gap in the market and developing a unique value proposition, as Styx Golf did by providing high-quality minimalist designed golf gear at a reasonable cost. Additionally, he highlights the importance of being attentive to customer feedback and making updates to the product, as the company did with their new version launch in April 2021. He also stresses the need for a defined and compelling company culture that prioritizes employee well-being and supports the company’s growth goals. He emphasizes the importance of transparency, authenticity and shared responsibility to foster an environment where employees can flourish.


In their own time, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Russell Kirk occupied different ends of the political spectrum. Their philosophies inspired the two most powerful movements of the age: the Nonviolent Movement (which led the larger Civil Rights Movement) and the modern Conservative Movement. Without King and Kirk modern American Social Justice liberalism and modern American conservatism as we know them would not exist. And yet, for all of their differences, our modern politics suffer because contemporary liberalism and conservatism lack the grounding in virtues, communitarian values and faith in an ordered universe that both Kingian Nonviolence and Kirkian Conservatism held fast to. Is it possible that by reacquainting ourselves with these lost traditions we could summon the better angels of left and right and restore a politics of virtue for the modern age?