Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom: Fifty Years Later

By |2019-07-18T15:52:46-05:00August 27th, 2012|Categories: Books, Economics, Friedrich Hayek, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

Introduction Mark Twain tells us in his book Tom Sawyer that when Tom was punished by having to whitewash his Aunt Polly’s fence, he tried, as was his custom, to shirk the obligation. By making the work look fun, however, he interested the other boys in painting the fence. After arousing their interest, he [...]

Humanitas and the Limits to the Free Market

By |2014-01-31T11:38:30-06:00August 15th, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

The essence of humaneness is limits which themselves reflect the hierarchy of enduring values. Humaneness in public affairs is characterized by the recognition and application of proportion and balance to the various needs of mankind. Often, though, decisions are made on the basis of a single principle adhered to regardless of other principles. In [...]

Economy and Transcendence: Laissez-faire and the Nature of the Market

By |2014-05-30T17:55:39-05:00July 31st, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Traditional Conservatives and Libertarians, Wilhelm Roepke|

In this paper I argue one cannot be a Christian and libertarian with any pretense of consistency. The argument comes in three major parts: the theological, the logical and the historical. The theological argument identifies and examines the significance of the concept of transcendence underlying three major social encyclicals that deal with economic matters, [...]

Wilhelm Roepke: Public Good vs. Public Choice

By |2017-07-28T23:04:26-05:00July 19th, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

With the present cancer of decay infect­ing the body politic, a virulence so debilitating that it induces complacency in the face of not only flagrantly unconstitutional acts of the national government but even of murder, it is an under­statement to say that the “com­mon good” is threat­ened. To deny, in the face of angular [...]

The Ideal Economy of Wilhelm Roepke

By |2020-02-28T14:59:49-06:00July 6th, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

Wilhelm Roepke’s vision of economic and social order while offering us a “third way” forces us to choose between the path of pragmatism and pluralism on the one side, and that of loyalty to ideals that transcend the material and the utilitarian on the other side—between a capitalistic economy of fragmented special interests, technologism, [...]

The Legacy of Wilhelm Roepke: Essays in Political Economy

By |2016-12-30T14:25:52-06:00June 28th, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

[This essay serves as the introduction to The Legacy of Wilhelm Roepke: Essays in Political Economy series by Dr. Ancil that we will be publishing on The Imaginative Conservative. The essay was originally published in 1998.] Most folks missed an important date: June 20th, which marked the fiftieth anniversary of the “German economic miracle.” [...]

The Third Way: Wilhelm Roepke and his Vision of Social Order

By |2016-12-30T13:40:11-06:00May 15th, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|Tags: |

Wilhelm Roepke More and more people no longer know what it means to put first things first and to think in terms of the principles involved. Consequently, only very few still have a real philosophy which separates the essential from the accidental and which puts everything in its place. We lost sight [...]

The Humane Economy of Wilhelm Roepke

By |2018-10-16T20:25:13-05:00January 27th, 2012|Categories: Economics, Featured, Political Economy, RAK, Russell Kirk, Wilhelm Roepke|

Today I offer you some observations concerning Wilhelm Roepke, a principal social thinker of the 20th century—and, incidentally, the principal architect of Germany’s economic recovery at the end of the Second World War. His books are out of print in this country at present, but I plan to reprint in a series that I [...]

Röpke’s Conundrums Over the Natural Family

By |2014-02-03T10:50:26-06:00January 21st, 2012|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Wilhelm Roepke|Tags: , |

Wilhelm Röpke was an unusual free-market economist working in a difficult time. I believe that we should see him, first of all, as a product of 1914, the year which launched what he called “the devastation on so gigantic a scale to which mankind, then having gone mad, dedicated itself.” Mustered to war as [...]

Economics: “The Not-So-Dismal Science”?

By |2017-07-10T15:12:46-05:00April 14th, 2011|Categories: Economics, Political Economy, Wilhelm Roepke|

The title of this essay takes its name, in part, from a speech that William McGurn delivered recently at Hillsdale College. Mr. McGurn served as the chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush from 2006-2008 and is currently the vice president of News Corporation. In his speech, Mr. McGurn sought to look at the claim [...]

Wilhelm Roepke and the ‘Third Road’

By |2017-06-28T16:04:38-05:00April 5th, 2011|Categories: Books, Wilhelm Roepke|Tags: |

  The enormous span of Wilhelm Roepke’s interests and writings complicates the task of doing justice to his thought within the confines of an essay. Hence, I have elected to focus on just one aspect of his approach and of his philosophy, but one that has proved to be decisive in the practical implementation [...]

The Economics of Prudence: Roepke, Ricardo, and Free Trade

By |2019-07-16T21:16:36-05:00August 13th, 2010|Categories: Economics, Free Trade, Political Economy, Ralph Ancil, Wilhelm Roepke|

Prolonged, widespread joblessness, collapsing real estate markets, and lower economic growth are a few of the many headline issues about the economy. Recommendations range from more stimulus to denying unemployment benefits but there is little in these discussions that convinces us policymakers know what they are talking about and there is much that is [...]

Humane Economy: A Book Review

By |2017-06-15T16:14:55-05:00August 11th, 2010|Categories: Books, Economics, Political Economy, Wilhelm Roepke|Tags: |

A Humane Economy: The Social Framework of the Free Market, By Wilhelm Röpke, Wilmington, DE: Intercollegiate Studies Institute, 1998. 200 pp. Wilhelm Röpke (in some texts spelled “Roepke”), a German economist, taught economics in his homeland until the arrival of Hitler’s regime, at which time he emigrated and after some years settled in Switzerland. [...]

From Both Barrels: Gregg, the Pixar Touch, Pogo, and Olson

By |2017-06-12T14:55:46-05:00July 19th, 2010|Categories: Apple, Bradley J. Birzer, Conservatism, Steve Jobs, Wilhelm Roepke|Tags: |

Forgive the scattershot tendencies and directions of this essay. Just lots of short items written quickly from my hotel room in downtown Portland, just blocks from Powells (which I’ve yet to visit). A few book recommendations I’m currently reading Sam Gregg’s new book, Wilhelm Roepke’s Political Economy. Written in a more academic but equally engaging [...]

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