Family Values Vs. Innovation?: A Friendly "Debate" With Nobel Prize Winner …

Mass Flourishing: How Grassroots Innovation Created Jobs, Challenge, and Change by Columbia University economics professor, Edmund Phelps, is an important book filled with brilliant insights. Any reasonably sophisticated and open-minded reader will benefit from reading it.  But on a point or two, I found myself skeptical, or at least wondering whether I’d misunderstood the author’s intent. One particular point stands out: Dr. Phelps’ statements about family values and traditionalism being the enemy of economic innovation. This issue came up in the form of a friendly challenging of one another’s ideas. It’s not particularly common for an ivy league professor to engage with a relatively unknown columnist in a way which shows openness to being challenged. It’s even more admirable for an economics Nobel Prize winner to do so. In other words, Ned Phelps is no

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