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Centesimus Annus, Sections 5 & 6

My Friends,

Thanks for an interesting and far-reaching discussion last night. I am consistently amazed at Pope John Paul II's ability to speak so broadly and succinctly about so many issues touching on our daily lives. There is really no one like him.

And so it is with some regret that I announce that next week we will read the final two sections of the excellent encyclical, Centesimus Annus. (and I read ahead so I'll give you a hint: they're very good!)

Hope to see you Wednesday, upstairs on the back patio (enclosed for the winter--so it's not too cold) at the Ginger Man.

Peace & Blessings,


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  • Joshua G.

    Writes Dominick Armentano, professor of economics at the University of Hartford, "The little-known truth is that when the government took Standard Oil to court in 1907, Standard Oil’s market share had been declining for a decade. Far from being a 'monopoly,' Standard’s share of petroleum refining was approximately 64% at the time of trial. Moreover, there were at least 147 other domestic oil-refining competitors in the market — and some of these were large, vertically integrated firms such as Texaco, Gulf Oil, and Sun. Kerosene outputs had expanded enormously (contrary to usual monopolistic conduct); and prices for kerosene had fallen from more than $2 per gallon in the early 1860s to approximately six cents per gallon at the time of the trial. So much for the myth of the Standard Oil 'monopoly.'"

    See: and

    January 10, 2013

    • Stephen K.

      Wikipedia brings up your point, Josh. There is controversy about whether it was necessary or not and quotes some of the same stats you did. However one can see why they were though to be repressing competition with these stats: The result was that although in 1911 Standard still controlled most production in the older US regions of the Appalachian Basin (78% share, down from 92% in 1880), Lima-Indiana (90%, down from 95% in 1906), and the Illinois Basin (83%, down from 100% in 1906), its share was much lower in the rapidly expanding new regions that would dominate US oil production in the 20th century. In 1911 Standard controlled only 44% of production in the Midcontinent, 29% in California, and 10% on the Gulf Coast.

      January 10, 2013

    • Ryan M.

      I have a very thorough book on oil that I'll bring next week. I think you'll enjoy it on many different levels.

      January 11, 2013

  • Lulu Q.

    Hey guys how are you??? I wanted to ask you if you guys could say a prayer of my uncle Pedro Noriega he is in critical condition coming out of a surgery. I know that the power of prayer is wonderful and he really needs it right now. Thank you in advance.

    January 8, 2013

    • James K.

      Absolutely, Lulu. God be with him.

      January 9, 2013

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