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A brief intellectual history of the lesser depression


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  • Edward Hadas

    (Thomson Reuters Breakingviews and Maryvale Institute (Birmingham, UK))

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    Globally, the real economy of goods and services functions better than ever in human history, but the financial and monetary system remains subject to crippling crises, including a severe one in 2008. This deviation can be explained by ‘‘the power of bad ideas’’, in particular policy-makers’ narrow focus on quantitative variables and their distrust of moral arguments. The combination leaves regulators and practitioners unable to recognise the role of greed and pride in finance. A moral approach could help reduce the financial system’s vulnerability. The description of economic activity in Benedict XVI’s Caritas in Veritate provides a good starting point. He offers a fundamentally non-monetary view of three economic arrangements: giving through exchange (commerce), giving through duty (taxes), and ‘‘gratuitousness and communion’’ (economic self-giving without concern for a return). The integration of the last into economic analysis would be particularly helpful.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Vita e Pensiero, Pubblicazioni dell'Universita' Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in its journal Rivista Internazionale di Scienze Sociali.

    Volume (Year): 120 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 313-324

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    Handle: RePEc:vep:journl:y:2012:v:120:i:3:p:313-324

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    Related research

    Keywords: Catholic Social Teaching; Economic Anthropology; Ethics; Finance; Financial Crises;

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