The family is the Achilles heel of the Western world. Economic man has succumbed to the temptation to seek paradise on Earth. The family has become the victim, as the market has disintegrated family life and weakened bonds within families. In trying to fill the gap, the state has initiated a growing dependency of the family on the state. Two vicious cycles are in operation: a primary addiction to consumer culture, and a secondary one to state assistance. A comparison of family policy models in the European-American context provides unsatisfactory solutions. The author´s search for normative answers is based on meta-economic discourse, which includes biblical tradition and ideas from the Christian East
Lubomír Mlcoch is Professor of Economics at Charles University in Prague, an Academician at the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (the Vatican), and the Emeritus Vice-President of AIESC.