Human Wrongs and the Long War Against Christianity

January 21, 2013

But let that pass. For me, this episode was a test of the tolerance of the new rulers of our society. Having, in the name of tolerance, secured major changes in the laws and customs of the nation, would they then show tolerance to their defeated opponents? No, they wouldn’t  Nothing would do except total acceptance of their beliefs. And this is what we repeatedly find. Christian conservatives are lured into conflicts where they can be classified as ‘phobes’ or as suffering from some other pathology, and are then punished for it.

via Human Wrongs and the Long War Against Christianity – Mail Online – Peter Hitchens blog.

McCain’s Mideast Blunders

January 19, 2013

This, of course, was a much more sophisticated theory than you’d get from lunatics like Michele Bachmann. Sit down for this, because I know it’s hard to believe anyone could spout such nutter stuff, but Bachmann actually opposed U.S. intervention in Libya. She claimed — stop cackling! — that many of McCain’s heroes might actually be jihadists ideologically hostile to the U.S. and linked to groups such as al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the terror enterprise’s North African franchise. She even thought — yeah, I know, crazy — that if Qaddafi were deposed, the heroes would get their hands on his arsenal, ship a lot of it to AQIM havens in places such as Mali and Algeria, and maybe even turn rebel strongholds such as Benghazi into death traps for Americans.

via McCain’s Mideast Blunders – Andrew C. McCarthy – National Review Online.

Wendell Berry’s Halcyon Bean Patch

January 16, 2013

Second, let me briefly respond to Berry’s observation that the Bible has a “lot more to say” about other sins, like fornication and adultery. This is quite true, and almost entirely beside the point. Say that a mother came home from grocery shopping to find out that her twelve-year-old son had set fire to the couch. When she was remonstrating with him, suppose further that she was met with the argument that he had been listening carefully to her for years, and that she had always had a “lot more to say” about table manners than this. This may be perfectly true . . . and yet . . . the couch.

via Wendell Berry’s Halcyon Bean Patch.

Mr. Fix It and the Whiz Kids

January 16, 2013

This is why House Republicans are repeatedly accused of not having any ideas. House Republicans actually have plenty of ideas, but most of them involve big spending cuts, and in most corners of wonky Washington, that doesn’t count. A subsidy to left-handed small business owners who promise to invest in voice recognition technology to cut back on carpal tunnel cases accompanied by a chart showing a corresponding reduction in health care spending: that’s an idea. But cutting back? Surrendering control? Forget it.

via The American Spectator : Mr. Fix It and the Whiz Kids.

Adam and Eve and Pinch Me

January 15, 2013

I am the first to confess that complementarianism, like creationism, pinches me in the current cultural climate; I would like to go with the cultural flow and be thought of by the great and the good as an enlightened and intelligent person rather than a bigoted moron; indeed, every fallen instinct in me wants to do so.  Thus, I need a good foundation on which to stand if I am to maintain these positions with any perseverance and conviction in the face of my own selfish ambitions and the overwhelming tide of the wider worlds beliefs.  Evolution seems to my amateur exegetical/theological eye to provide no such safe place to stand.   At the risk of provoking further ire, I might rephrase my earlier blogs title: Confused by evolutionary complementarianism?  You most definitely should be.    I do not think you can have both.

via Adam and Eve and Pinch Me – Reformation21 Blog.

Our Sort-of War on Terror

January 14, 2013

The cost of nation-building has been replaced by the economy of assassination — as the idealist Bush, with his speeches on freedom, gave way to the cynical Obama, with his private musings about who’s next on the Predator list.

via Our Sort-of War on Terror – Victor Davis Hanson – National Review Online.

On Manilow and Myths

January 13, 2013

The second moment came when a member of the audience asked how she, a homeschool mum struggling with depression, could be satisfied.  I answered that the Bible (and Augustine) indicate that life is tragic, a struggle in a fallen world, marked by moments of satisfaction but much frustration.  Sometimes life is just miserable, I said, but the hope of the resurrection will make all things right.

My interlocutor then answered that Russell would give a much more sensitive answer, that he would have stressed the value of what the lady was doing and that, in twenty years time she might well be satisfied when she sees what she has achieved.  He thus earned one of the few spontaneous rounds of applause of the night.

This answer went to the heart of the problem which the evening highlighted: my interlocutor had spent much time deriding Christianity as providing a fairy story to make life bearable through its metaphysical myths, its ‘pie in the sky when you die.’  Yet here he was, providing just such a fairy story.  The audience member may not live twenty years. She might be hit by a bus today or die of a heart attack or cancer next year.   She might live to a ripe old age but see her children grow up to be massive disappointments or to predecease her.  Why is ‘pie in twenty years’ time on earth’ more plausible than the heavenly variety when it comes to satisfaction today?

via On Manilow and Myths – Reformation21 Blog.

The Superb Mitt Romney

January 3, 2013

So, what did Romney offer the “middle class”? I’ll tell you what: He offered to avert financial collapse. To do something about the debt and the deficit. To reform entitlements. To reform the tax code. To foster the conditions in which economic growth occurs. To help put people back to work. To save the frickin’ country.

That’s not program enough for the “middle class”? What does he have to do, enter each of their homes and bake them muffins? Swab their floors? (Actually, knowing him and his neighborliness, he would do that.)

Saving the country — that should have been enough. And if it wasn’t good enough for the “middle class,” then the “middle class” is an ass.

via The Superb Mitt Romney – Jay Nordlinger – National Review Online.

Dave Barrys 2012 Year in Review

December 30, 2012

In Spain and Greece, hundreds of thousands of people take to the streets in protest against government-imposed austerity measures necessitated by the fact that for the past five years pretty much nobody in Spain or Greece has done anything except take to the streets in protest.

via Dave Barrys 2012 Year in Review | Lansing State Journal | lansingstatejournal.com.

Yes, I know it’s Dave Barry. But 1. it’s true, and 2. how can you tell anymore?

Questions for Gun Controllers

December 28, 2012

What’s the functional difference between an assault weapon and a semiautomatic rifle? You do understand that the answer is “nothing”? An assault weapon is not an automatic weapon. It is semiautomatic like most guns now sold in the United States, i.e., it fires every time the trigger is pulled. What sets it apart is its scary-looking features.

What’s more powerful, the Bushmaster .223 used by Adam Lanza in his slaughter or the average deer-hunting rifle? If the answer is the average deer-hunting rifle — indeed, many states ban the Bushmaster .223 for deer hunting because it is too weak — will you attempt to ban them, too?

via Questions for Gun Controllers – Rich Lowry – National Review Online.