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Adam Smith

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Observers who disapprove of others’ exchanges too often want to substitute the visible fist of the state for the invisible hand of the market... "As every individual, therefore, endeavours as much as he can both to employ his capital in the support of domestic...
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Whereas Adam Smith had warned that government must intervene in the economy from time to time, Edmund Burke believed any interference in the economy on the part of government to be a violation of the natural law...
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Should Christians support capitalism? Surely yes, if only because capitalism deserves most of the credit for the decline of extreme poverty in the world, from about one-third of the world’s population a generation ago, to about one-tenth today,...
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When Edmund Burke surveyed the names of those leading the French Revolution in its first half year of existence in 1789, he despaired. Several were certainly good men, he noted, and many were quite accomplished. Yet, not...
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Within his general view of man as naturally social, John Adams explored the nature of the passion for distinction. To speak of man as gregarious is merely to identify a human inclination to "go in flocks or herds,...
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The art of war... as it is certainly the noblest of all arts, so in the progress of improvement it necessarily becomes one of the most complicated among them. The state of the mechanical, as well...
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James R. Otteson, the Thomas W. Smith Presidential Chair in Business Ethics at Wake Forest University, possesses one of the greatest minds in defense of classical liberalism in the modern era. He has authored two definitive works on...
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I have been reminiscing a lot lately, probably a sign of my age. But I recently came to recall an episode in my earlier life before I returned to St. John’s College as...
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In the “Overture” to his grandly symphonic The Enlightenment: An Interpretation, Peter Gay describes the “international type” of the philosophe as a “facile, articulate, doctrinaire, sociable, secular man of letters.” On this definition, was Adam...
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Legend has it that at the age of four, Adam Smith was kidnapped from his Scottish home by a traveling band of gypsies. A gentleman passing the gypsies on the road noticed the crying baby and alerted...
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How often can writers pretend to discover some well-known thing for “the first time ever?” With poor Adam Smith it has happened...
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A friend of mine in the financial services industry called me the other day to vent about the poor quality of the public discourse concerning the freedom of the marketplace and the obsession with the Almighty Dollar....
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Adam Smith I make no claims to a high level of expertise in the philosophy of Adam Smith. This is the first time I have spoken about Smith outside of a classroom setting. I assign...
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One contemplates the power, depth, and breadth of the finest 18th-century minds only with some trepidation and humility. Or at least, one should. The favorite study of the great men of that day, famed editor of The Nation...