Category: Business & Economics

The dispiriting freedom of McDonald’s all-day breakfast menu

It's the end of an era. The tyranny of McDonald's 10:30 a.m. breakfast cut-off time is over. Let the reign of on-demand Hotcakes and Egg McMuffins begin! At least that's the message the company's executives are pushing since last week's official launch of the restaurant chain's all-day breakfast menu. Judging from the immediate social media success of the campaign, it's a message the…  [more]

Sins of emission: playing my part in the Volkswagen scandal

This past spring, my husband and I purchased what we thought was the perfect family car for an environmentally sensitive but fun-loving family of five. After months of research, we ruled out larger SUVs (too environmentally destructive) and minivans (gas guzzlers and a little too frumpy for our taste). We narrowed our choices down to three wagons with sufficient backseat width and good stowage capacity. Among those…  [more]

Shopping the gender-neutral toy aisle with Jesus

As I lay snuggled under our gender-neutral down comforter the other night, I pondered Target’s plan to remove gender labels for its toys and bedding alongside a Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood blog post expressing dismay over the decision. I wondered where in the Bible it says that boys should have “their” toy guns and plaid bedding clearly identified for them, as that post implies. As my…  [more]

What if your feet aren’t ready for their Toms close-up?

Last week marked the ninth birthday for Toms shoes. Since 2006, Blake Mycoskie’s “One for One” company has, for every first-world purchase of its shoes, given a pair to someone overseas in need. Now the company sells coffee for clean water, sunglasses for eye-care, tote bags for maternity kits. Given how much they talk about gift-giving, it’s no surprise Toms also has a One Day Without Shoes…  [more]

Nail salons and the moral price of beauty

What’s the moral price you are willing to pay for beauty? Does being a Christian have economic implications? Does God care about the practices surrounding manicures and pedicures? These are some of the questions that came to my mind after reading “The Price of Nails,” a recent series by Sarah Maslin Nir in the New York Times. In the first part of the series we are introduced to the consistently…  [more]

Wealth in light of the Apple Watch

The announcement this month of the Apple Watch raises a number of perplexing challenges for Christians. A dominant theme of much commentary has had to do with the top-tier Apple Watch Edition, with options ranging from $10,000 to $17,000. These models feature rare crystal screens and precious metal cases. Apple products have never been cheap, but this new level of luxury represents the company’s recognition of…  [more]

Obama’s State of the Union and a Christian understanding of income inequality

President Barack Obama’s State of the Union message struck a powerful chord last night on the topic of income inequality in the United States, echoing the concern of centuries of Christian reflection on wealth and poverty. The president posed a choice between “an economy where only a few of us do spectacularly well” and “an economy that generates rising incomes and chances for everyone who…  [more]

The ascetic appeal of tiny living

We Americans love our stuff. No doubt about it. Consumerism is as American as supersize fries. Any excess naturally brings counter movements toward the opposite extreme. One recent response to wanton consumerism is “tiny living,” a philosophy that emphasizes environmental awareness, adventurousness, self-sufficiency, simplicity, fiscal soundness and - its most visible outward sign of the lifestyle - tiny…  [more]

A Gospel guide to Christmas shopping

The Christmas shopping season is in full swing, and the early returns show a significant uptick in online purchases on Cyber Monday. For many, the days leading up to and following Thanksgiving are filled with alerts, newsletters, Tweets and Facebook posts highlighting the latest and greatest deals. Many sites offer tips about how to maximize your shopping experience through a variety of strategies. Most of us shop at…  [more]

Egg freezing and the facts of life

Apple and Facebook recently made headlines with their decision to cover the medical costs for female employees who want to freeze their eggs. Many fertility clinics now advertise this as a procedure one might choose in order to “pursue educational, career or other personal goals.” These headlines were a fresh reminder that Protestant Christians often ignore the ethical implications of reproductive…  [more]

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