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Principles Matter

by | Mar 25, 2019 | Articles

 

Principles Matter

Boundary Stone produces quality high school social science curriculum written by the late historian Dr. Clarence B. Carson and economist Dr. Paul A. Cleveland. Dr. Carson’s textbooks have been used by thousands of homeschools and Christian schools over the years. We are committed to keeping this unparalleled material available for the next generation. Dr. Cleveland also continues to post articles and videos related to economic issues of the day that can be used to supplement courses.

These include:

Textbooks

  • US. History I & II:
    A Basic History of the United States, 6-volume set
  • Western Civilization:
    Understanding the Modern Culture Wars – The Essentials of Western Civilization
  • Government:
    Basic American Government
  • Economics:
    Basic Economics – A Natural Law Approach to Economics

Online Resources

  • Self-paced economics course to accompany our textbook with daily assignments and videos from many great sources
  • Teacher’s guide for economics with study guide answers and additional teacher resources
  • Free Budgeting Mini-course
  • Articles and videos

The Importance of Foundations

To equip students to be informed citizens capable of recognizing good life choices and workable policy options it is essential they learn history, government, and economics with curriculum built on a solid foundation of universal principles. All people live by some code of conduct that approves certain things to be right and good and other things to be wrong and immoral. These watershed issue choices by different textbook authors will lead to vastly different content. This becomes a huge problem when Christian schools and homeschools choose to use material originally developed to comply with government regulated standards. It also shows itself in the answers required in many AP tests.

One Triune God Who Created All Things
is Our Reference Point

For us at Boundary Stone, our moral compass is rooted in the belief that the triune God of the Bible is the Creator of all things and that He providentially rules over His creation. He created an orderly universe governed by fixed principles that are discoverable by us. This enduring natural law, which arises from the nature of things, gives rise to several additional principles that make up the foundation for everything we do. Let’s consider these.

1. EVERY Human Being has Dignity and Inherent Value

First, the fact that all people bear the image of God means that everyone should be respected. The main way to respect others is to deal with everyone we meet in mutually beneficial ways. That is, we should voluntarily interact with other people and when we find opportunities to trade it should be in mutually beneficial ways that advance humanity. In fact, we believe that God has commanded us to interact in this way as the primary means of pursuing His command that human beings should take dominion over the earth.

2. The Best Government is Limited Government

Secondly, we believe in limited government. If history teaches us anything, and if our own personal experience gives evidence of anything, it is that people have a tendency to abuse each other in numerous ways. Jealousy, envy, greed, hatred, and rage are as old as human history as best we can observe. Put simply, we are not what we should be. It is for this reason that some form of government is needed to punish the worst offenses of person against person in order to secure a modicum of civility in a fallen world. Namely, governments should be instituted among us to punish murderers, rapists, and thieves. However, government should not be thought of as an institution that has the ability to provide for our needs. It simply has no such power to do so and any thought that it can will soon lead it to be a source of murder, rape, and theft.

3. Free Enterprise Provides Better Innovation

Thirdly, making our way through this world is challenging for all of us. As such, we believe that people left free are best able to find new and better ways of dealing with the difficulties of life. Put simply, innovations and new products and services are best left to entrepreneurial human action.

4. Human Ills are Best Solved by Private Enterprise and Charity

In addition, it is a fact that there are many people among us who suffer from various ills that they cannot overcome by themselves. In such cases, people of good will rightly desire to help alleviate their pain as best we can. True charity in this regard is best defined as voluntary sacrifice motivated by love. That is, charity is a very personal act of choice and is never a matter of governmental action. Simply put, charity cannot be demanded or forced. Any attempts to do so will not promote charity. Instead, it will promote injustice and promote hatred rather than love.

5. Protection of Private Property is Essential to Productivity

Finally, mutually agreeable voluntary human action cannot be maintained without respect for and protection of private property. We inhabit a physical world and were given a task by our Creator to take dominion of it and to rule over it. In the process of doing so, it is our nature to create property. From raising herds of livestock to growing crops or producing any number of goods and services to benefit other people, we create property. As such, we ought to respect the property that other people create and if we wish to acquire something that is possessed by someone else, we can enter into a mutually agreeable trade for it. Therefore, our Creator has tasked us with the duty to be productive as best we can and to use the rewards of that activity to engage other people. In doing so, we promote the welfare of society.

In all of our educational materials, we adhere to these principles. They are the foundation on which our books, videos, and articles are based. They provide a framework within which we explore history, economics, and other social studies. Hence, they provide for our worldview.

 

Basic Economics 4th ed Front Cover @200Dr. Paul Cleveland is a professor of economics at Birmingham-Southern College. He has authored or co-authored four books. His most recent is an update to Dr. Clarence Carson's economics text: Basic Economics: A Natural Law Approach to Economics, Fourth Edition.

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