Fourteen years ago, when Portugal decriminalized most illegal drugs, drug war proponents claimed the move would drive Portugal into chaos. Today, Portugal has the second-lowest death rate from illegal drugs in Europe with no sign of chaos on the horizon.
Pope Francis's two major writings as pope are marked by a relentless pessimism and a world view in which human institutions such as markets are constantly making life worse and worse. This view, however, is not supported by the facts.
Paul Krugman is desperate to believe that the French economy is doing quite well. That would prove that Krugman's anti-austerity crusade must be on the right track. Unfortunately for Krugman, and for France, things aren't going so well.
When writing on poverty issues, many commentators emphasize the importance of work and wages, but many cultural factors, including views of family size and child rearing, can have immense effects on generational poverty as well.