Bulls, Bears and Golden Calves: Applying Christian Ethics in Economics
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.
Powerful Biblical Wisdom
By Stephen Bloom - February 1, 2008
This book is a rich and comprehensive source of solid biblical wisdom on the challenging economic issues facing human society. I use "Bulls, Bears & Golden Calves" to complement our standard secular textbook in the introductory economics course I teach at a Christian college. My students seem to connect very well with Professor Stapleford's presentation of the issues.
In this life, Christians will never be immune from the human struggle for daily bread. But Professor Stapleford demonstrates that we can live out our faith with compassion and mercy, even in a world driven by economics. And he demonstrates that free market capitalism, while far from perfect, is nonetheless the most powerful and effective system yet devised to bring the greatest good to the greatest number of people.
While I might not personally agree with Professor Stapleford on every issue he addresses, I commend the thoroughness of his scholarship and the clarity of his thinking. This book is a... read more
A Good Place to Start
By Wesley Vander Lugt - February 5, 2010
In this second edition, additional chapters on executive compensation, corruption, and transformation development, as well as updating figures and arguments in each section enhanced the value of book, which ranges from basic foundations and assumptions to macroeconomic, microeconomic, and international issues.
There are several reasons why this book is an excellent introduction to a Christian ethics of economics. First, the range of issues covered is enormous, giving the reader ample subjects on which to ruminate and generating desire to dig deeper. Second, Stapleford covers general foundations, assumption, and principles of economics while also exploring specific issues such as interest, immigration, and gambling. Third, there is an effort to place these general principles and specific issues within the overarching biblical story of creation-fall-redemption-consummation, rather than simply proof-texting verses in support of economic positions. Fourth, a unique aspect of... read more
Truly biblically based. Sound economic theories.
By Yeung Hok Wai - August 14, 2011
I think the most difficult task of writing such a theme is how to correctly integrate biblical truths with sound economic theories. Some economists simply put their words in God's mouth. As an economics teacher myself, I think the author has done a God-blessed job. The author's understanding of economic theories is sharp, untainted by political ideologies. This book should be a must-read book for any serious Christian economists looking for God's words on economic issues.
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