“Are Students Really Learning to Be Critical Thinkers?” is the title of an article in BetterEd by Annie Holmquist (http://www.better-ed.org/blog/are-students-really-learning-be-critical-thinkers). This question has been on my mind for some time as I have listened to and read educational leaders, teachers, professors and literature extol the virtues of “critical thinking.” But what have they almost always meant by that term? And what should it mean? And why should we care? Working backward, we ought to care of we value a true… Continue Reading ››
Since the vote to leave the European Union is done, and Great Britain is out, I suppose I will give my opinion about it. This undoubtedly will not be shared by all. First, let me say—again—that I strongly favor free trade among nations. Having said that, the EU is very much more than an economic association. And even its s0-called free trade is far from free. It really amounts to protectionism by cartel. Right there then goes much of the… Continue Reading ››
As many of you know my Bereans colleague Mark Smith likes movies and likes to write movie reviews. I am not so cool so I like books. And on occasions I like to highlight some I like really well. This time I have three. And I apologize that you can’t go see the movie versions of these—I don’t think anyone would go at any rate. If you like economic methodology (who doesn’t), you’ll love this book. It is a bit… Continue Reading ››
We have been hearing quite a bit lately about the state attorneys generals’ attempts to require information from corporations, non-profit think tanks, university research centers and even individuals regarding so-called “climate denial.” The AGs have alleged that these entities have withheld information that acknowledges the reality and danger of climate change and thus have committed fraud. Their favorite analogy is the tobacco companies whose memos contained explicit recognition of dangers but did not release it to the public. In that… Continue Reading ››
I came across an interesting article in the Pope Center for Higher Education Policy out of North Carolina. The title is “UNC Chapel Hill’s Economics Program Lacks Historical Perspective,” and it can be read here at http://www.popecenter.org/commentaries/article.html?id=3386 (sorry, I haven’t mastered the art of just a “here” to click on—primitive computer skills). The upshot was not just that UNC lacks much in the way of a historical approach to economics, but that most colleges and universities do. The author, Alex… Continue Reading ››
Charlotte Allen had a very thought-provoking article in the latest First Things, entitled “Punching Down” (see it here http://www.firstthings.com/article/2016/06/punching-down). The article begins with the saga of the all but forgotten Kim Davis, the hapless county clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky who refused to sign homosexual marriage licenses and also forbad her assistant from doing so. Well, even many on my side of the political spectrum ridiculed her for that brazen display of conscience run amok. And I fully understand the… Continue Reading ››
We have another podcast for you, this one on the 3rd party issues that seem so relevant right now. I hope you enjoy. If you have questions, feel free to leave them here (or find us on Twitter or our Facebook page) and we may address them in future podcasts.
Well, has it come to this or am I reading something from The Onion? I did verify its truth. If you look here (http://theweek.com/speedreads/626361/oberlin-students-want-abolish-midterms-grades-below-c, it seems that at least 1,300 students at Oberlin College are demanding that no grade below a C be given and that mid-term examination be eliminated. Why? So the students will have more time for activism. Of course it is radical liberal activism, but that is a side note. Let’s just forget all grades and all… Continue Reading ››
Seemingly forever ago, Dr. Clauson and I sat down to record a podcast. This is it. Does it sound as if produced by amateurs? Why yes, yes it does. Appropriate, I think, given that I am the technological guru of the group–which shows the extraordinarily low bar I managed to clear to be designated as the “podcast guy.” I appreciate your feedback.
its getting serious. News reports continue daily on the deteriorating state of dysfunctionality called government in Venezuela. Not only is food shortage a significant problem for many, but basic protection and law and order functions are missing in action. This is leading to vigilante justice, with some suspected criminals being burned alive on the streets. So we are beyond the usual high inflation and heavy-handed regulation–they are running out of food. “President” Maduro–should we really honor someone in his position… Continue Reading ››
The following is just a little briefing that focuses our attention on some important recent issues (or at least what I think is interesting): Full disclosure: I am not a prolific user of social media, and I sometimes look down (secretly) on those who are—maybe I am really just jealous and I certainly am technologically challenged. But I do on occasion use Facebook—but I do not tweet, as that seems like I should be chirping. Still, I read with some… Continue Reading ››