The existing crisis cause economic issues to be a critical part in public discourse. Politicians are aware of this and offer economic solutions to present crisis. However, in “Redeeming Economics,” John D. Mueller shows the failure of conventional answers offered by both Democrats and Republicans “for their deficit spending, promotion of unsound currency (theft through inflation), payoffs to select constituencies, and lack of fiscal discipline.” Mueller offers an alternative economic perspective among competing economic theories that is grounded on Christian theology. He attempts to apply the moral philosophy from Augustine to Aquinas to economic policy. The doctrines of providence and the image of God serve as the links that connect theology to economics. He criticized Adam Smith’s pantheistic idea of “invisible hand”. Mueller argues that such theological disconnection accounts for the reigning amorality and denial of natural norms among economists since Smith’s day. The ideas of Marx and Lenin simply followed such disconnection. Mueller is envisioning for “a new economic era grounded on neo-scholasticism.”
Redeeming Economics: Rediscovering the Missing Element
By John D. Mueller
ISI Books, 2010 (hardback, 480 pages)
Reviewed by Chuck Huckaby
As the 2012 Presidential elections draw near, the presidential candidates are offering a variety of economic proposals to stimulate our struggling economy. How are we to seriously evaluate which, if any, are likely to succeed based on sound economic theory? Does Christian theology (or even “natural theology”?) play a part in guiding our evaluation of both sound economic theory and these individual proposals?
John Mueller in Redeeming Economics: Rediscovering the Missing Element says “Yes”. As the speechwriter and economist for Congressman Jack Kemp from 1979–88, he was responsible for analyzing and developing policy options from his classically Christian perspective. Often disdained by those who rejected his application of moral philosophy from Augustine and Aquinas to economic policy, Mueller’s sport and revenge has been to build a business around predicting the…
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