Words & Numbers


About this podcast

Insightful weekly commentary on news & current events from economist Antony Davies and political scientist James R. Harrigan.

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March 6, 2019

This week’s guest, David Beito, professor of History at the University of Alabama, discusses the functions, benefits, and undoing of mutual aid societies. These private safety nets, like tontine funds and Masons, once widely provided services such as health and unemployment insurances, hospitals, housing for the elderly, and care for orphans. So what happened? Did beneficiaries dry up these funds? Did scandals, state bans, and the Great Depression lead to the disappearance of benefit societies? Are they still around? Join James Harrigan, Antony Davies, and professor Beito as they answer these questions and more on Words & Numbers.

Show Notes:

Male-only draft unconstitutional

Humanity’s backup plan

Foolishness of the week

AOC says people shouldn’t reproduce

Topic of the week

Mutual aid societies

Tontine insurance

David Beito

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