TANSTAAFL

The first rule of economics is TANSTAAFL: There Ain’t No Such Thing as a Free Lunch.[1] While something might appear to be free (e.g., education, healthcare, etc.), there is always a cost to someone. Ignore this law, and all economic hell breaks loose. Of course, politicians believe they can ignore and even break any law because they consider themselves to be gods. They believe they can create eco [...]

Economic Borrowed Capital

With some variations, those who hold to a biblical economic model share many fundamental principles with advocates of a free market, or, as I hope to demonstrate, free marketers share many fundamental economic principles with advocates of a biblical worldview. John W. Robbins writes, in his critique of Ayn Rand’s Objectivist philosophy, “That the structure of knowledge that she erected, in which m [...]

The Starting Point in Economics (and Everything Else)

The Bible begins with two uncontested presuppositions: First, God exists, and, second, He is the Creator of “the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1). A third presupposition logically follows from the first two: “The earth is the LORD’s and all it contains” (Ps. 24:1; see 1 Cor. 10:26). Not only the land, but the stuff of creation also belongs to God: “For every beast of the forest is Mine, the cattl [...]

Nobody Knows Anything

William Goldman, author and screen writer,[1] sums up the problem of attempting to be certain about the success of a film—“Nobody knows anything.”[2] Goldman was not saying that Hollywood types are stupid. He was pointing out that they are not omniscient. They don’t have enough knowledge about people and their tastes to know whether a film will be a success. For example, Disney executives sold off [...]

The Economy in Action

The word economics is derived from two Greek words: oikos, meaning “house,” and nomos, meaning “law.” Almost all modern definitions of economics, like contemporary definitions of “government,” assume that the State, civil government, is the starting point in understanding economic theory and practice. To understand economics, so the argument goes, the role of the State must first be considered. On [...]

Why High Gasoline Prices Are Good for America

Americans are feeling the pinch at the gas pump. They believe they are paying way too much for a gallon of gasoline. Take a trip to England where you will pay about $6.00 per gallon. Most of the price is in taxes. I can remember seeing the movie Tender Mercies starring Robert Duvall as a drunken country-western singer who finds Christ and a new family. The woman he married owned a gas station. [...]

The La Brea Tar Pits and the Price of Oil

I’ve always wanted to see the La Brea Tar Pits. Ever since I was a boy I had heard stories of the famed petroleum pits that hold millions of fossils. When my wife, my youngest son, and I were in California a few weeks ago, we took time to visit the archeological find in the heart of downtown Los Angeles located in the Miracle Mile District.[1] Oil literally seeps to the surface through fissures in [...]

Why We Need the Rich: Part 'Duh'

Writing a daily column for this website is a perilous enterprise. While most of the emails I get in response are complimentary, there are always a few spoilers. One letter writer was stridently opposed to my article on “Why We Need Rich People”. Like most socialists, he quotes the Bible sparingly and most often out of context. Here was my response (with some modifications): Dear Chris, Thanks for [...]