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Self-interest, economic efficiency and private property rights are among the most basic assumptions of market economics. But can an economic theory built on these assumptions alone provide adequate insight into human nature, motivation and ultimate goals to guide our economic life?
John Stapleford says no, along with those economists who recognize the limits of their discipline. He insightfully shows us in detail how ethics are inextricably intertwined with economic life and analysis. Writing from a Christian ethical perspective, he interacts with seven standard introductory economics texts, exploring the moral challenges embedded in various macro-, micro- and international economic theories and outlining a faithful response to them.
Keyed to seven of the most widely used introductory economics texts—Gwartney, Stroup & Sobel; Mankiw; Mansfield & Behravesh; McConnell & Brue; Miller; Samuelson & Nordhaus; and Stiglitz—this book will be especially useful for introductory courses in economics.
This revised and expanded edition includes updated charts and graphs and three new chapters covering executive compensation, the effects of corruption and rural development.
Foreword by Francis X. Tannian
Preface to the Second Edition
IntroductionSection I: Laying the Foundation
1. Grid Work: A Theological and Ethical Framework Section II: Reflections on the Basic Assumptions of Economics
2. Me, Myself and Why? Pursuit of Self-Interest Promotes What Exactly?
3. Waste Not? Reappraising the Goal of Economic Efficiency
4. It's Mine! Private Property Rights Section III: Macroeconomic Issues
5. How Does Your Garden Grow? The Possibilities and Perils of Economic Growth
6. Render unto Caesar: The Role of Government in the Economy
7. Overemployment: The Growth of Work and the Loss of Leisure
8. Catching Your Interest: Lending and Borrowing in Scripture and History
9. Gross Compensation: Executives Rolling in Dough Section IV: Microeconomic Issues
10. A Clarion Call: Poverty and Distributive Justice
11. Tending the Garden: Environmental Stewardship
12. Who's Responsible? Business and Social Responsibility
13. False Hope: The Boom in Legalized Gambling
14. The Naked Gorilla: The Ethical and Economic Challenge of the Pornography Industry Section V: International Issues
15. A Matter of Life and Debt: Debt Relief for Less-Developed Countries
16. Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor: The Economics of Immigration
17. The Malthusian Blues: The Ethics and Economics of Population Control
18. Sand in the Gears: The Corrosive Effect of Corruption
19. Why Waste Resources? Do Rural Development by the Book