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    Questioning the ‘deaths of despair’ argument

    A new paper challenges the notion that the rise in overdose deaths is tied to economic conditions. The authors conclude, “the fatal overdose epidemic is likely to primarily reflect drug problems rather than deaths of despair.” I’m not sure if that’s reassuring, but it does suggest caution when examining…
    Joseph Coletti, January 8, 2018
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    The tension between markets and morality

    Roger Scruton finds conservative thought on a “teeter totter” between those like Margaret Thatcher who, as he writes in his 2014 book, How to Be a Conservative, “when pressed for arguments…leaned too readily on market economics and ignored the deeper roots of conservatism in the theory and practice…
    Joseph Coletti, December 15, 2017
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    National Review Online columnist ponders football’s future … and it has nothing to do with the anthem

    Theodore Kupfer devotes a National Review Online column to the professional sport that dominates fall Sundays for many fans. All the pat talk about the declining ratings of the National Football League glides past one fact: Football is one product with a stratospherically high floor. Even when sales…
    Mitch Kokai, December 15, 2017
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    Doing less to achieve more in Charlotte

    Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan told Charlotte business leaders “we have a duty” to improve economic mobility. But the “21 key strategies, 91 recommendations, and over 100 implementation tactics and policy considerations” proposed by a Task Force earlier this year leave too many barriers to mobility in place. I…
    Joseph Coletti, December 13, 2017
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    Hold on, have faith, retain standards

    The recent spate of sexual assault and harassment stories, detailing decades of transgressions by previously well-respected men, may be a sign of a return to morality. Society has rediscovered some limits to acceptable behavior. There are limits to acceptable corporate and government behavior as well. Charles Horn, a former state…
    Joseph Coletti, December 11, 2017
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    Can government restore marriage and the family?

    “Marriage is in excellent shape, but only among the well-off,” The Economist declares in a recent editorial on the state of marriage around the world. “Elite couples delay tying the knot to allow time to get established in a career, but they still tie the knot before having children.”…
    Joseph Coletti, November 29, 2017
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    Tax Reform and #GivingTuesday

    Tuesday was #GivingTuesday. Entering its sixth year, the day saw $177 million donated to charities around the world last year. About $70 billion will flow to churches and other nonprofit organizations between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, a quarter of the total for the year donated by individuals.
    Joseph Coletti, November 28, 2017