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Friday Five: Grads, Dads, and Grandparents

On Fridays we bring you the week’s best from around the web. This week’s collection includes advice for grads, thoughts on the importance of dads, and more.

1. My Fantasy Commencement Address: AEI scholar Mike Strain offers the advice that you probably didn’t hear in your actual commencement address.

Lord Acton declared that freedom is “not the power of doing what we like, but the right of being able to do what we ought.” Work to emancipate yourself from your passions, to achieve true freedom, to do what you ought with your adult life. What ought you to do? Live for others, be a servant and slowly and steadily try to improve your moral character.

2. Religious Liberty and Economic Freedom: Intellectual and Practical Paradoxes: Writing for Public Discourse, Samuel Gregg discusses the underappreciation of economic freedom.

Economic liberty is not an absolute. Neither is religious freedom. Both are, however, rooted in the truth about man that we find in Christian anthropology and the natural law: the truth that is knowable through Revelation and right reason. And in the end, these are the only foundations that make all authentic forms of freedom—religious, political, and economic—truly reasonable, fully life-giving, and genuinely indivisible.

3. Gregory Thornbury: My Top 5 Books Every College Student Should Read: The president of The King’s College shares a few must-read books.

Plato’s Dialogues: Alfred North Whitehead once said that the European philosophical tradition is a series of footnotes to Plato. I, for one, cannot think of a more helpful oversimplification. Plato’s dialogues are good for virtually everything that ails our society. He takes on relativism, skepticism, materialism, and incivility.

4. Five Reasons America Needs More Dads: Willis Krumholz at The Federalist laments the rise of fatherlessness in America, discussing its causes and possible solutions.

The role a father plays in a child’s life is a role that the government can never hope to fill, and government’s attempts to do so have been devastating.  There is nothing wrong with a hand up, but driving dad away negates any help the government can hope to provide.

5. Not Your Grandpa’s Inequality: Washington Post opinion writer Robert Samuelson describes how inequality today is nothing like it was a century ago.

The inequality debate won’t fade soon. The changes in relative incomes are too great. The political and intellectual appeals are too powerful. But in thrashing out what’s happened and why—and what, if anything, to do—we should stick to the facts and avoid careless historical comparisons.