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Donald Devine on the enduring tension

Ep. 276

Adam Smith once said, “Every man, as long as he does not violate the laws of justice, is left perfectly free to pursue his own interest in his own way, and to bring both his industry and capital into competition with those of any other man.”


In this episode, Acton brings you a conversation with political scientist and scholar, Dr. Donald Devine and Eric Kohn, director of communications here at the Acton Institute. Devine’s new book, The Enduring Tension: Capitalism and the Moral Order, is a much needed commentary on the sustaining nature of morality and the free market.  Devine states that in order for free markets to thrive, there are two missing components: morality and tradition.


In his book, Devine writes, “The moral assumptions of the Western traditional mythos, in which individuals have been created free and equal, are indispensable to legitimizing a pluralist, federalist, traditionalist, capitalist society with free markets and localized powers under a limited central state — a society where liberty and order coexist in creative tension. If its legitimizing source is forgotten or denied, civilization will likely fail.” If our culture continues toward this steep path of socialism, what is left is an oppressive bureaucracy, and a centralized totalitarian government.


Devine writes that what truly sustains humanity derives from Judeo-Christian beliefs, beginning with the initial doctrine of God who made us in His own image, endowing us with a moral worth that exists permanently in every person. This was the faith of the American Founders.


The Fund for American Studies - Donald Devine 


The Enduring Tension: capitalism and the moral order 


Journal of Markets & Morality


Is there an intrinsic morality of the free market? - Acton Commentary  


Free-market Economics - Acton Research 


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6/2/2021

Why do some people hate the Jews?

Ep. 283
We bring you a conversation between Acton’s Director of Communications, Eric Kohn, and the Jack Miller Family Foundation’s Director of Freedom Initiatives, Rabbi Jonathan Greenberg. In this episode, they discuss a new surge in antisemitic violence in America as tensions between Israel and Gaza continue to grow.Jews have been beaten in broad daylight, synagogues have been vandalized, pro-Israel demonstrations have resulted in riots, and major cities across the Unites States have experienced explosive growth in antisemitic attacks.Journalist Bari Weiss wrote in her new article, “We saw them on Thursday, when pro-Palestinian protesters threw an explosive device into a crowd of Jews in New York’s Diamond District. We saw them on Wednesday, when two men were attacked outside a bagel shop in midtown Manhattan. We saw them on Tuesday, at a sushi restaurant in West Hollywood, when a group of men draped in keffiyehs asked the diners who was Jewish, and then pummeled them. And in a parking lot not far away, when two cars draped in Palestinian flags roared after an Orthodox man fleeing for his life. And in the story of the American soccer player Luca Lewis, cornered by a band of men in New York demanding to know if he was a Jew.”How did this happen, and why is this hate becoming a trend?How to Fight Anti-Semitism: Bari Weiss The New Furies of the Oldest HatredSubscribe to Acton Institute Events podcastNational Review: Action Institute's Father Robert Sirico Cautions Against DespairChilling video captures the moment socialism morphs into anti-SemitismTerror in New York: Is anti-Semitism on the rise?