A sketch on the old Muppet Show with their very special guest star Harvey Korman had a panel discussion on The Meaning of Life. Harvey Korman came down on the side of “Life is like a tennis game,” with which Miss Piggy disagreed, while one of the other panelists favored “Life is like a garbage dump.” The discussion ended with a general exchange of insults and the announcement that the next discussion would cover whether conversation was a dying art . . . whereupon all the Muppets keeled over leaving Korman shaking his head.
Wednesday, January 22, 2020
Tuesday, January 21, 2020
It’s an absolute dogma of modern politics and economics. Everyone has the right to what they need to live a decent life. If people do not have what they need to do so, it is the responsibility of the State to see that they do, and all efforts are to be directed to the end of providing people with what they need.
Monday, January 20, 2020
Friday, January 17, 2020
We didn’t get too much news from our network this week, but there are a number of items of interest to adherents of the Just Third Way. It’s just a coincidence it’s mostly about food and drink this week:
Thursday, January 16, 2020
As we saw in the previous posting on this subject, in response to the “new things” of socialism, modernism and the New Age, in 1891 Pope Leo XIII proposed a program of expanded capital ownership. This would empower people and families, giving them the opportunity and means to overcome the growing social alienation that had led to the development and growth of the new things in the first place.
Wednesday, January 15, 2020
In case you haven’t noticed, it has become increasingly frequent over the past couple of decades to demonize anyone who disagrees with you on virtually any subject. We’d say, “on any subject,” but there must be some things that people don’t disagree on. Somewhere.
Tuesday, January 14, 2020
No, we’re not trying out a bad Yoda impression, although that might not be a bad idea if it brings in readers. Or maybe a Darth Vader as (apocryphally) done by Tony Curtis in The Black Shield of Falworth? “Luke, I am yer Fada.”
Monday, January 13, 2020
Okay, admittedly the Just Third Way only comes in around the last quarter of the show, but at least half the studio audience stated explicitly that it was the best part of the show, and a number of other people concurred, judging from the mail we've received. So, just in case you missed it when it was live or on some of the reruns, here is the January 8, 2020 EWTN Live show with your host Father Mitch Pacwa interviewing CESJ's Director of Research, Michael D. Greaney:
Friday, January 10, 2020
Perhaps the most unusual thing this week from the Just Third Way perspective is how no one seems to be questioning the incredible rise in share values on the stock market that is not linked to any discernible increase in the quantity or quality of marketable goods and services, i.e., “economic growth.” Instead, the rise in share values is itself taken as “economic growth,” even though shares are not actually marketable goods or services. Be that as it may, here are the Just Third Way highlights for this week:
Thursday, January 9, 2020
According to an article in the December 27, 2019 Washington Post, in the middle of a presumably booming economy, Americans are drowning in non-mortgage consumer debt. (“Americans Piling Up Near-Record Levels of Credit Card Debt,” A-3.) Unacknowledged in the story — or anywhere else — is the depressing (and sobering) fact that Keynesian economics and all derivatives, absolutely rely on non-productive spending for consumption, what Jean-Baptiste Say called “multiplying barren consumptions.”
Wednesday, January 8, 2020
It’s a truism that has become engrained into American life. Go to school to get good grades. Get good grades to get a good job. Get a good job to get a good pension for retirement. Be sure to save enough on the side in an IRA or 401(k) to supplement your pension and Social Security so you can afford to do all the fun things you see other people doing on TV.
Tuesday, January 7, 2020
In the previous postings on this subject we looked at the effect two key inventions, the cotton gin and the McCormick Reaper, had on society, whether for good or for ill. The cotton gin made raising cotton profitable, while the McCormick Reaper made it possible to think about ending world hunger and famine.
Monday, January 6, 2020
Here's a video from not too long ago, September 18, 2000, featuring Dr. Norman G. Kurland, president of the Center for Economic and Social Justice (CESJ), having a conversation with Harold Channer on his show.
A relatively short time ago the principal author of this blog had a book published by TAN Books. With the title Ten Battles Every Catholic Should Know (2018), which will be featured — along with the author! — on EWTN Live! January 8, 2020, 8:00 pm EST on the EWTN Television Network, a cable television channel. Check your local listings for when it airs in your area. If you miss it or don’t have cable, EWTN usually puts the show up on YouTube within a couple of days.
Friday, January 3, 2020
The big news this week is actually for next week: Michael D. Greaney, CESJ’s Director of Research, is scheduled to appear on the Eternal Word Television Network’s show EWTN Live! with Father Mitch Pacwa, S.J. In the expanded ownership arena, we kick off the year with the SECURE Act, that puts more power in the hands of participants in qualified retirement plans:
Thursday, January 2, 2020
As we saw in the previous posting on this subject, the invention of the cotton gin revolutionized cotton production and, in a horrifying twist of fate, revived what to all appearances was a dying institution at the end of the eighteenth century: human chattel slavery. Cotton was now phenomenally profitable as the world’s leading fiber, cheap, durable, and economical to produce . . . if you ignored the fact that it provided an excuse to enslave millions of human beings and wore out land at a tremendous rate. When money talks, human dignity walks.
Wednesday, January 1, 2020
Tuesday, December 31, 2019
In the previous posting on this subject we looked at the fundamental assumption of socialism: that people have a right to what they need. In the modern age this has largely displaced the traditional assumption that people have a right to the means to acquire what they need.
Monday, December 30, 2019
In this week’s podcast we bring you a special guest, Chris Dardzinski from Lincoln Park, Michigan, where he is an Economist, local politician, and Just Third Way activist. He talks about how to organize for change right where you live, including efforts to implement the concept of Capital Homesteading locally.
Friday, December 27, 2019
It’s time again for our annual news roundup, the first part of which we posted last week, and the second part today. Again, there is such a volume of material that for once we decided to forgo illustrations:
Thursday, December 26, 2019
In case you haven’t noticed, there is something of a split in modern society. On the one hand are those who believe that you only deserve what you work for, and if you don’t have something, it’s because you didn’t work for it. You are lazy, shiftless, and worthless.
Wednesday, December 25, 2019
Tuesday, December 24, 2019
This is the time of year when people give each other the Dickens in the numberless readings and dramatic adaptations of A Christmas Carol, that is, as well as all the parodies, spoofs, rip-offs, and cartoons. A personal favorite among the later comes from the old New Yorker/Saturday Review of Literature cartoon series by the late Burr Shafer (1899-1965), “Through History With J. Wesley Smith,” known as “History’s Greatest Wrong-Guesser.”
Monday, December 23, 2019
A while back the talk was about Louis Kelso's "Second Income Plan." The principles are the same as those of the Capital Homestead Act, and some people might wonder why we continued to develop the concept. View these videos and judge for yourself. We think we've come a long way, but you will see that decades ago Kelso was already centuries ahead of where we are now:
Friday, December 20, 2019
It’s time again for our annual news roundup, the first part of which we will post today, and the second part next week. There is such a volume of material that for once we decided to forgo illustrations: