Saturday, November 30, 2013

Greg Mankiw On Pope Francis

I was going to comment on Pope Francis's recent comments on economics, but Greg Mankiw did a much better job expressing the same reaction I had:

"First, throughout history, free-market capitalism has been a great driver of economic growth, and as my colleague Ben Friedman has written, economic growth has been a great driver of a more moral society.

Second, "trickle-down" is not a theory but a pejorative used by those on the left to describe a viewpoint they oppose.  It is equivalent to those on the right referring to the "soak-the-rich" theories of the left.  It is sad to see the pope using a pejorative, rather than encouraging an open-minded discussion of opposing perspectives.

Third, as far as I know, the pope did not address the tax-exempt status of the church.  I would be eager to hear his views on that issue. Maybe he thinks the tax benefits the church receives do some good when they trickle down.

I had the exact same reaction that Mankiw had, and, as usual, Mankiw hit the nail on the head.
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