Acton Institute's Religion & Liberty Interviews S.C. Governor Mark Sanford


In a wide ranging interview, S.C. Governor Mark Sanford talks to Acton Institute's Religion & Liberty quarterly about his criticism of government stimulus plans, the risk of a "dollar crash," and his support for free market solutions to the economic crisis. Sanford also discusses the role of religion in the 2008 election, and the proper understanding of faith in public life.

Grand Rapids, Mich. April 7, 2009 -- In a new edition of the Acton Institute's Religion & Liberty quarterly, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford discusses his criticism of government stimulus plans, the risk of a "dollar crash," and his support for free market solutions to the economic crisis.

On April 3, Gov. Sanford became the last governor to meet the application deadline for federal stimulus cash, which amounts to $2.8 billion for South Carolina. But he declared that he would not accept $700 million largely designated for education unless he could use it to pay down state debt.

"The bottom line here is that as a country, as businesses, as individuals, we got way ahead of ourselves in spending," Sanford says in the Acton interview. "We've been on a spending binge. And if you get ahead of yourself with regard to spending, you're going to have to deal with the other side of the binge." Read the Sanford interview.

Sanford also discusses the role of religion in the 2008 election, and the proper understanding of faith in public life. "The Bible says in Revelation, 'Be hot. Be cold. But don't be lukewarm,'" Sanford says. "And there's too many political candidates who walk around completely in the middle -- completely in neutral. With regard not only to faith, but with regard to policy. And that's what people are sick of."

The Acton Institute has launched a Web portal which provides a collection of timely print and video resources examining the moral dimensions of the economic crisis. Acton advocates for a market economy, limited government and entrepreneurial solutions to job creation. The resource page features "Davos Capitalism: Adam Smith's Nightmare," a new commentary by Acton Program Director Michael Miller.

"We tend to think of a market as an inanimate force and economics as akin to alchemy, where only a few brilliant insiders know what is going on," Miller writes. "But markets are not inanimate; they are relationships between people, and the technocratic schemes of Greenspan and Paulson and Geithner and Bernanke and the Clinton-Bush-Obama administrations' attempt to manage the economy has made it clear that the managers know little more than we do. We have tried the illusory third way -- it is called Davos -- and it has failed."

Along with the financial crisis page, the Acton Institute has introduced a Health Care Resources page which looks at the critical condition of health care in the United States and the evolution of the crisis. The Web portal also offers alternatives to our current system while maintaining a Christian perspective on health care reform.

About the Acton Institute
With its commitment to pursue a society that is free and virtuous, the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty is a leading voice in the national environmental and social policy debate. The Acton Institute is uniquely positioned to comment on the sound economic and moral foundations necessary to sustain humane environmental and social policies.

The Acton Institute is a nonprofit, ecumenical think tank located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Institute works internationally to "promote a free and virtuous society characterized by individual liberty and sustained by religious principles." For more on the Acton Institute, please visit www.acton.org.

Interviews with Institute staff may be arranged by contacting John Couretas at (616) 454-3080 or at jcouretas@acton.org.