Political Economy

A Balanced Position on Tariffs and Protectionism

By |2020-01-05T21:38:41-06:00January 5th, 2020|Categories: American Republic, Economics, Free Trade, Morality, Political Economy, Virtue|

The trade war has ignited debate on the merits of tariffs and the need to protect the nation’s manufacturing base. Battle lines are drawn between an exaggerated localism that stresses self-sufficiency and a bloated globalism where products transit the Earth unhindered and markets alone rule. […]

Discussing “Capitalism”

By |2019-06-17T15:19:38-06:00December 16th, 2018|Categories: Capitalism, Economics, Free Markets, Free Trade, Government, Joseph Pearce, Political Economy, Senior Contributors|

Speaking personally, I’d rather discuss many things during this joyful season of Advent than “capitalism.” And yet Matthew Summers’ recent essay “In Defense of Capitalism” for The Imaginative Conservative has prompted me to comment on the topic, albeit briefly. […]

President Trump and the American Piggy Bank

By |2018-06-13T12:37:11-06:00June 13th, 2018|Categories: American Republic, Donald Trump, Foreign Affairs, Pat Buchanan, Political Economy, Politics|

At the G-7 summit in Canada, President Donald Trump described America as “the piggy bank that everybody is robbing.” After he left Quebec, his director of Trade and Industrial Policy, Peter Navarro, added a few parting words for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: “There’s a special place in hell for any foreign leader that engages [...]

Viktor Orbán, George Soros, & the Battle for Hungary

By |2019-12-03T17:16:09-06:00June 12th, 2018|Categories: Europe, Foreign Affairs, Government, Political Economy, Politics, Viktor Orbán|

Many Hungarians clearly perceive their way of life and their country as under threat and sense that influential individuals like George Soros would like them fundamentally transformed. This is a fight between nationalists and anti-nationalists… The victory of Viktor Orbán and his party Fidesz in the Hungarian elections last month elicited the predictable flurry [...]

Cultural Debris: Two Conferences & the Future of Our Civilization

By |2019-04-04T12:47:00-06:00May 20th, 2018|Categories: Culture, Economics, Political Economy, RAK, Russell Kirk, Western Civilization|Tags: |

There still are men and women enough among us who know what makes life worth living—enough of them to keep out the modern barbarian, if they are resolute. If they are not resolute, and if they cannot make common cause, the garment of our civilization will go to the rag-bin, and the cultural debris [...]

On Straussian Teachings

By |2017-10-04T13:02:37-06:00October 6th, 2017|Categories: Economics, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Leo Strauss, Neoconservatism, Paul Gottfried, Political Economy|

The nexus between the Straussians and neoconservatives has been overstated for partisan ends, but it is still nonetheless there. Sociologically and culturally, the two movements are largely indistinguishable… The Truth About Leo Strauss by Catherine and Michael Zuckert (University of Chicago Press, 2006). In The Truth About Leo Strauss, Catherine and Michael Zuckert, both professors [...]

Wilhelm Röpke’s Conundrums Over the Natural Family

By |2019-07-23T12:38:45-06:00July 16th, 2017|Categories: Economics, Family, Political Economy, Timeless Essays, Wilhelm Roepke|

Wilhelm Röpke grew mesmerized by population growth projections which counted 300 billion inhabitants on the Earth by the year 2300. In such an anthill existence, he asked, what would happen to those “unbought graces of life”: “nature, privacy, beauty, dignity, birds and woods and fields and flowers, repose and true leisure”… Today’s offering in [...]

Decadence, Free Trade, & Mercantilism

By |2019-07-23T13:06:08-06:00February 11th, 2017|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

That boredom, sexual perversion, consumerism, and the general malaise of the West are to a great extent the fruits of past economic growth is long record­ed… “Conquest or superiority among other powers is not, or ought not ever to be, the object of republican systems.” —Charles Pinckney of South Carolina The Rise of Neo-Mercantilism. [...]

Humane Economy or Romantic Utopia? The Vision of Wilhelm Roepke

By |2019-09-05T11:56:02-06:00February 11th, 2016|Categories: Books, History, Political Economy, Wilhelm Roepke|

June 20th, 1998, marked the fiftieth anniversary of the German “economic miracle.” Of course, there was nothing miraculous about it. Germany’s success was not due to the hard-working character of her people, or to foreign aid, or to any other special reason. It was the natural outcome of a market economy and currency reform. And [...]

The National Debt: Betraying Our Ancestors & Our Children

By |2016-01-16T13:01:00-06:00December 14th, 2015|Categories: Bruce Frohnen, Economics, Featured, Federal Reserve, Government, Political Economy|

The national debt has surged more than half a trillion dollars in the last three weeks, as the suspension of the debt ceiling in late October has allowed the government to borrow as much as it wants. — Report in The Washington Examiner America’s national debt is approaching $19 trillion, and has surged over the least [...]

Jeffersonian Political Economy

By |2019-04-18T10:37:10-06:00September 11th, 2015|Categories: Clyde Wilson, Economic History, Economics, Featured, Political Economy, Thomas Jefferson|

Economics, as practiced today, is a utilitarian and materialistic study. It is concerned with maximizing profit, with describing the actions of man as an economic being, and explaining the allegedly inevitable results of supposed economic laws. Our Southern forebears did not practice economics. They practiced political economy—which is concerned with human well-being. Those old-time [...]

The False God of Economic Growth

By |2020-01-14T11:42:36-06:00May 23rd, 2015|Categories: Economics, Featured, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

Let us be clear on one point: the usual defenders of the free market—the Friedmans, Hayeks and Mises—are not primarily concerned with private property or liberty. They are firstly concerned with economic growth which mainly means continuous economic, technical and social change. For example, when airplanes became popular, air travel would have been very [...]

A New Take on Economic Substitution

By |2019-04-02T16:01:47-06:00May 3rd, 2015|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Wilhelm Roepke|

The concept of “substitution” is a familiar one in economics. Many products are used as substitutes for others such as margarine for butter and tea for coffee. If the price of one becomes too high the other product may be used even though it isn’t perfect. Economic substitution provides people with alternative options which [...]