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Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem Paperback – May 4, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: HarperOne; 1 edition (May 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061900575
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061900570
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.2 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,351 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“In Money, Greed, and God, Jay Richards has written the definitive case for capitalism, a crisply written and incisive discourse on wealth and poverty, money and morality for the 21st Century.” (George Gilder, co-founder of the Discovery Institute and author of Wealth and Poverty)

“Jay Richards understands the objections to capitalism, and here explains why they do not convince him. The empirical findings revealed in Money, Greed, and God run against those objections.” (Michael Novak, Chair in Religion and Public Policy at the American Enterprise Institute)

In Money, Greed, and God, Jay Richards shows us . . . a capitalism grounded in the truth about human beings as free, morally responsible, co-creators charged with dominion and stewardship of the earth by the loving God to whom we are all ultimately accountable. (Rev. Robert A. Sirico, President of the Acton Institute)

“Money, Greed, and God is both thoughtful and important.” (Washington Times)

From the Back Cover

The good news about capitalism

Jay Richards presents a new approach to capitalism, revealing how it's fully consistent with Jesus's teachings and the Christian tradition—and our best bet for renewed economic vigor.

Money, Greed, and God exposes eight myths about capitalism—including the notion that capitalism is based on greed—and demonstrates that a good Christian can be a good capitalist.


More About the Author

Jay W. Richards, Ph.D., is the author of many books, co-author of The New York Times bestseller Indivisible and author of Money, Greed, and God, which won a Templeton Enterprise Award.

He is the Distinguished Fellow at the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics, and a Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute.

He is also executive producer of several television documentaries, including The Call of the Entrepreneur and The Birth of Freedom.

Richards' articles and essays have been published in The Harvard Business Review, Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Investor's Business Daily, National Review, The Washington Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Huffington Post, The American Spectator, and a wide variety of other publications.

Richards' work has been covered in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times, Nature, Science, Astronomy, Physics Today, The Chronicle of Higher Education, American Enterprise, Congressional Quarterly Researcher, and The American Spectator.

Richards has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs. He has lectured at scores of academic conferences; on scores of college and university campuses in the United States, Europe, and Asia; at many national think tanks; at numerous public policy meetings; and on several occasions to members of the U.S. Congress and U.S. congressional staff.

Dr. Richards has a Ph.D., with honors, in Philosophy and Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary. He also has an M.Div. (Master of Divinity), a Th.M. (Master of Theology), and a B.A. with majors in Political Science and Religion.

Customer Reviews

It was pleasant to read this book.
Filipe Guerra
Jay Richards, as always, tackles the ethics of a difficult topic using well researched data, logic and humor.
hugh tobin
Capitalism is simply the best economic system through which poverty and death are reduced in the world.
W. Gant

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

102 of 120 people found the following review helpful By David Bahnsen on June 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I will cut to the chase - this is going to be a very, very positive book review. This is an excellent book, and I will explain why I am so fond of it in just a moment. But since I write a lot of book reviews, and the one negative thing I have to say about this book is something I have never said before, I will just get it out of the way up front so I can move on to the real review: I wish I had written this book. Quite literally, Jay Richards took the need for me to do something I was very serious about doing (some day) right off of my "to-do" list. A book for laymen of faith that provides a Biblical defense of free market capitalism is in tremendous need. John Schneider's The Good of Affluence" is a fantastic contribution ([...] but its focus is exegetical and theological. Dinesh D'Souza's The Virtue of Prosperity is delightful, but it is specifically contextualized to an era that was practically gone by the time the book was published (the dot com techno-affluence world). A slew of treatises exist that provide an underlying defense of capitalism, but the sad reality is that most books defending the morality of a free market ideology were not written by people of faith, or at least not people publicly identifying their faith-based presuppositions. The book concept I have been so excited to see is one that was (a) Written for an audience of laymen, (b) Written for an audience of professing believers, (c) Written with an underlying theological credibility and understanding, and (d) Written with a very specific economic expertise. Perhaps I was fooling myself to think I was the person to tackle such an endeavor, but I am happy (and sad) to report that my vision has now been fulfilled.Read more ›
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70 of 85 people found the following review helpful By Jonathan Witt on May 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Richards is not a Randian, but he notes several positive things about Rand, not surprising from an author who explains that he was positively influenced by Rand. To clarify his position on Rand, Richards does not argue in this book that Rand defends misers. Quite the contrary. He discusses the fact that she makes pioneering entrepreneurs the heroes of her novels. Richards' complaints are that:(1) She defends selfishness; (2)she attacks the sacrificial ideal (common to the Judeo-Christian and broadly Western tradition); and (3) she argues that Christianity and capitalism are incompatible.

Richards does say that readers might expect her to defend misers because of her praise of selfishness. He never says she did so. Here's what he says in the chapter on greed:

"Despite Rand's official praise of selfishness, however, John Galt doesn't look anything like Ebenezer Scrooge or that fat, cigar-smoking, tuxedo-clad guy in Monopoly. On the contrary, Galt is a pioneer, a brave creator of wealth who pursues his vision despite powerful obstacles, including a malevolent state bent on destroying him. In fact, although Rand despised Christian self-sacrifice, Galt is suspiciously Christ-like. He preaches a message of salvation, founds a community, challenges the status quo and official powers-that-be, who hunt him down, torture him, but ultimately fail to conquer him.

"To be sure, there are dissonant notes. His symbol is not a cross, but the dollar sign. The book ends with Galt and his lover tracing the sign of the dollar across a dry valley. But insofar as Galt's character works, it's because he contradicts the miserly stereotype that Rand's philosophy leads the reader to expect. In fact, none of Rand's best fictional characters fits her philosophy very well.
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41 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Michael R. Nothstine on May 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover
(This review was written by Ray Nothstine and originally published on the Acton Institute Powerblog)

The belief that the essence of capitalism is greed is perhaps the biggest myth Jay W. Richards tackles in his new book, Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism is the Solution and not the Problem. One reason for confronting this challenge is that many free market advocates subscribe to the thought that capitalism produces greed, and for them that's not necessarily a negative. But for those with a faith perspective, greed and covetousness are of course serious moral flaws.

It's also the kind of myth that less articulate writers would rather not challenge, especially in this troubling economic climate. Richards does however have a skill for tightly honed logical arguments, and he not only is able to defend free markets but tear lethal holes into many of the economic ramblings of the religious left. He even takes on holy of holies like fair trade and Third World debt relief. Richards argues that the free market is moral, something that may come as a surprise to many people of faith. This book provides a crushing blow to those involved in the ministry of class warfare or those who wish to usher in the Kingdom of God through "nanny state" policies.

The book divides into eight chapters, with each chapter discussing a common held economic myth like the "piety myth" or "nirvana myth." Richards says the piety myth pertains to "focusing on our good intentions rather than on the unintended consequences of our actions." The nirvana myth characterizes the act of "contrasting capitalism with an unrealizable ideal rather than with its live alternatives." Richards himself states, "The question isn't whether capitalism measures up to the kingdom of God.
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