Shot: Can Religious Charities Take the Place of the Welfare State?

—The Atlantic, today.

Chaser: The Tragedy of American Compassion:

What is this book? It’s a history book. It’s a book that describes how Americans successfully fought poverty before the government became involved big time in poverty-fighting during the 1930s and then further in the 1960s. It’s pretty much an unknown history because the assumption, I think, of lots of historians has been that there really wasn’t a whole lot in the way of poverty-fighting until government did become involved. And I spent a year during a previous leave from the University of Texas hanging in the Library of Congress, rummaging through the stacks, finding all these old reports and documents and memoirs and reporters” descriptions about these poverty programs in the 19th century that actually were a lot more effective than many of the programs we have today.

—C-SPAN Booknotes interview with Marvin Olasky, January 22, 1995.