Religion and Economics Other Resources

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Core Readings

Evolving Economics

  • Roberts, David. (2013). "None of the world’s top industries would be profitable if they paid for the natural capital they use." Grist. Link 2pp, 5 min.
  • Cleveland, Cutler. (2010). "Biophysical Economics." Encyclopedia of Earth. Link Read highlighted parts, skim the rest. 5pp, 10 min.
  • Daly, Herman. (1993). "Steady State Economics: A New Paradigm." Johns Hopkins University Press. Link 6pp, 15 min.
  • Magic. "Economic Terms and Concepts Examined." Link 8pp, 20 min.
  • Krugman, Paul. (2011). "Markets Can Be Very, Very Wrong." New York Times. Link 2pp, 5 min.
  • Muller, Nicholas Z., Robert Mendelsohn, and William Nordhaus. (2011). "Environmental Accounting for Pollution in the United States Economy." American Economic Review, 101(5). Abstract. Link 1 min.

Muller, Menedelsohn, and Nordhaus write details of Krugman's analysis.

  • Rees, William. (2015). "Economics vs. The Economy." Post Carbon Institute. Link 5pp, 5 min.

Rees distinguishes the abstractions of economics from the reality of an economy that functions wholly within a finite ecosystem. He describes economics as a social construct that poorly reflects material phenomena, and advocates for a paradigm shift to ecological economics. After listing six qualities of humans and the natural world, he critiques how poorly these are reflected in contemporary economics.

  • Chetty, Raj. (2013). "Yes, Economics is a Science." New York Times. Link 4pp, 5 min.

Harvard economist argues that economics is increasingly evidence-based and experimental, though he notes large areas of disagreement about central issues.

Evolving Religion

  • Enge, Nick. (2009). "A New (and Ancient) Kind of Religion." Link 2pp, 7-8 min.
  • Andrews, Frank; Enge, Nick. (2010). "Foreword," "Preface," "Loving—A Heartfelt Yes!" The Art and Practice of Loving. p. 1-20. Link 20pp, 10 min.

Andrews takes a fresh look at loving, drawing together wisdom from many traditions and practices.

  • Gyatso, Tenzin (also known as The Dalai Lama). (2005). "Our Faith in Science." New York Times. Link 3pp, 5 min.

Dalai Lama writes that Buddhism must be conformed to science, and while he disavows a fusion of religious ethics with scientific inquiry, he calls for a science-based secular ethics (valuescience).

Interest Readings

Evolving Economics

  • Gronewold, Nathanial. (2009, October 23). "New School of Thought Brings Energy to 'the Dismal Science.'" New York Times. Link

Grunwald chronicles conference of biophysical economists, providing thumbnail sketch of their thesis, historical context, and reason to heed them.

  • Nolt, James. (5 November 2015.) "What's Wrong With Economics?" Link 3pp, 5 min.

A Senior Fellow at World Policy Institute critiques economics as a celebration of "free markets" based upon false assumptions, pretending to be positive, though entirely normative.

  • Nolt, James. (12 November 2015.) "Ideological Bedrock of Economics." Link 5pp, 8 min.

Nolt summarizes evolution of economics from classical to neo-classical, explaining how each form was constructed to reflect a temporal context, and decries "refusal to acknowledge pervasive private power." Power, difficult to quantify, was excluded in favor of price and quantity as economists sought the legitimacy of mathematics to support claims that theirs is a positive science.

  • Nolt, James. (19 November 2015.) "All Prices Are Political." Link 5pp, 8min.

Nolt explains how a handful of powerful owners distort markets, making a mockery of traditional economic theory.

  • Nolt, James. (26 November 2015.) "Demand from Where." Link 3pp, 5 min.

Nolt exposes the lie of consumer power.

  • Nolt, James. (3 December 2015.) "Supply or Cost?"Link 3pp, 5 min.

Nolt argues that cost decreases as production increases, and that this departure from supply curves postulated in economics is sufficient to effectively destroy the efficient market hypothesis.

  • Nolt, James. (10 December 2015.) "Cost and Competitive Power."Link 3pp, 5 min.

Nolt argues that private owners avoid free markets as well as they're able.

  • Nolt, James. (17 December 2015.) "Private Power and Price Stability."Link 3pp, 5 min.

Regulatory power, public and private, not supply and demand, underpins price.

  • Nolt, James. (24 March 2016.) "Understanding Value." Link 3pp, 5 min.

Nolt claims classical economists through Marx were correct to emphasize cost, and dismisses supply and demand in favor of struggle between debtors and creditors.

  • Nolt, James. (31 March 2016.) "Valuing Capital." Link 3pp, 5 min.

Nolt claims credit conditions strongly influence prices of everything, including money itself.

article=1057&context=classracecorporatepower Link] 23pp, 30min. Nolt explains how bankers use power to extend or withhold credit to control everyone else.

  • Nolt, James. (2015-2016.) "Polarizing Political Economy."

World Policy - With blog begun in 2015 Nolt explains how wealthy people shape our world by extending or denying credit.

  • Harkin, Sean. (2010, October 21). "Evidence-Based Economics." World Finance. Link

A cell and molecular biologist turned financial risk consultant calls for evidence-based economics.

  • Costanza, Robert, et. al. (1997). "The Value of the World's Ecosystem Services and Natural Capital." Nature 387 Link
  • Daly, Herman. (1968). "On Economics as a Life Science." The Journal of Political Economy 76(3). Link
  • Brooks, David. (2011). "It's Not About You." New York Times. Link
  • Franzen, Jonathan. (2011). "Liking Is for Cowards. Go for What Hurts." New York Times. Link
  • Seligman, Martin. (2004). "Eudaemonia: The Good Life." The Edge. Link
  • Brooks, David. (2009, May 12). "They Had It Made." New York Times. Link
  • Shermer, Michael. (1992). Excerpt. The Soul of Science. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (1991). "Growth, International Trade, and Destruction of Community." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (1995). "Review of "Small is Stupid."" Population and Development Review. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (1995). "The Irrationality of Homo Econimus." Developing Ideas. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "Policy, Possibility, and Purpose." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "Selected Growth Fallacies." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "The Economics of Julian Simon." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "Globalization and Its Inconsistencies -- Does Free Trade Mean Free Migration?" The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "Steady-State Economics Concepts, Questions, Policies." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "Population and Economics -- A Bioeconomic Analysis." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2003). "Uneconomic Growth in a Full World." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2004). "Offshoring in the Context of Globalization." The Social Contract. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2005). "Economics in a Full World." Scientific American (September 2005). Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2008). "The Crisis." Adbusters. Link
  • Daly, Herman. (2008). "A Steady State Economy." Sustainable Development Commission. Link
  • Costanza, Robert; Daly, Herman. (1992). "Natural Capital and Sustainable Development." Conservation Biology 6(1)." Link
  • Mill, J.S. (1848). "Of the Stationary State." Principles of Political Economy. Link Highlighted version here. Link

Evolving Religion

  • Dennett, Daniel C. (2006). "Five Hypotheses about the Future of Religion." Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon. p. 35-36. Link 2 min.

Dennett offers five alternative futures for religion.

  • Lee, Adam. (2013, November 27). "Why People Are Flocking to a New Wave of Secular Communities: Atheist Churches." Alternet. Link 8 min.

Atheism is fastest-growing "religion" in US, and people are creating secular "churches" (often based upon scientific religion) in order to enjoy sangha in ethical practice.

  • Tarico, Valerie. (18 November 2014). "Does Religion Cause More Harm than Good? Brits Say Yes. Here’s Why They May be Right." Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. Link 5 min.

Former evangelical Valerie Tarico reports on research that reveals a majority of Britons perceive that religion does more harm than good, and related studies.

  • Brooks, David. (22 May 2015). NYTimes. "Building Spiritual Capital." "Link 3pp, 3 min.

Brooks discusses research about spirituality with or without the context of religion. He and the researcher are tip-toeing towards, though short of "science-based religing.

  • Kirchgaessner, Stephanie. (26 May 2015). Guardian. "Vatican: Ireland Gay Marriage Referendum Vote Defeat for Humanity." Link 3pp, 3 min.

Irish voters, most Catholic act to reform church and state while high Vatican official resists "reformation" essential for Roman Catholicism to become a religion consilient with a modern scientific world-view.

  • Barber, Nigel. (2011). "Does Religion Make People Happier?" Psychology Today. Link

Barber explores the putative link between religion and happiness and offers evidence that wealth and sharing trump religion as predictors of happiness.

  • Hauser, Marc; Singer, Peter. (2005). "Morality without Religion." Free Inquiry. Link

Hauser and Singer argue that we can approach morality and ethics scientifically (i.e., with valuescience).

  • Bloom, Paul. (2012). "Religion, Morality, Evolution." Annual Review of Psychology. Link

Bloom argues that we can attribute diverse effects to religion, some of which will be widely termed "moral" and others of which will be equally widely termed "immoral."

  • The Economist. (2008, March 19). "The Science of Religion: Where Angels No Longer Fear to Tread." The Economist. Link

EU funding study of biological basis for religion. Summary of prior research to understand "religious experience" scientifically.