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Goodness by Compulsion

November 29, -0001
Of course, we cannot really know what's on the heart of politicians, except insofar as it pleases them to reveal their motives in any matter. I can't imagine any politician offering as his explanation for some public policy position that he just likes the feeling of power or that he…

Oh, That Debt!

November 29, -0001
Do not adjust your set. That distinguished young gentleman talking about the need to curtail America's debt is indeed the same President Obama who has spent the first year of his tenure driving that debt through the ceiling. Suddenly Mr. Obama is listening to the voices of sanity and the…

Only Numbers

November 29, -0001
The reports are beginning to come in on the impact of the federal stimulus package of last spring. From all over the country we are hearing of jobs being created and saved by the scores of thousands. There's only one problem: much of it is apparently untrue. The latest official…

Freedom's Nervous Sons

November 29, -0001
Every parent knows that if you continue to do everything for your children, they'll never grow up. They will discover that they don't have to clean up their room, in spite of all your threats; sooner or later you'll do it for them. Homework due tomorrow? No problem; mom and…

Eyes of the Nation

November 29, -0001
The function of our eyes, at least in part, is to convey information to the brain about our immediate surroundings, thus allowing the brain to calculate the best course of action, say, around the jutting edge of a cedar chest. It is important, therefore, that our eyes be clearly focused…

The Absence of Shame

November 29, -0001
Our growing postmodern consensus is breeding the poison of tolerance into the moral life of our society. So toxic has the nation's moral bloodstream become with this doctrine that it is increasingly difficult for the nation's opinion-makers to render meaningful judgments on moral issues. Who are we, the logic goes,…

A Trinity of Liberties

November 29, -0001
The history of Western civilization shows us that a trinity of liberties is almost inextricably linked. Freedom of religion, free governments, and free markets have been found together in the West for nearly 1,000 years now. These did not develop all at once. Historically, freedom of religion had to be…

What's News?

November 29, -0001
I've been mulling over the question of what Americans consider "news." That is, when we go to the evening news programs, pick up the daily paper, or peruse a periodical, what are we looking for? What do we want to know, and why? Just as important, how do the people…

No Faith?

November 29, -0001
In his remarks yesterday during the memorial service at Ft. Hood, President Obama declared that "no faith" would justify such horrible acts of violence against innocent people. While I appreciate the President's being present to express the nation's sorrow and outrage, I can't help but wonder what in the world…

Right Foot, Left Foot

November 29, -0001
In 1974 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn put forth his formula for bringing down the Soviet Union. He wrote in an essay entitled, "As Breathing and Consciousness Return", that all that would be necessary to usher in the end of Marxism in Russia would be for every person who loved his country "to…

Revolutionary Arms

November 29, -0001
Having spent a good deal of yesterday afternoon unsuccessfully trying to craft a poem, I am reminded of two things: First, poetry matters, as Dana Gioia argued in his masterful book invoking that idea. And second, poetry is hard work. Which is good, because if it weren't there would be…

The Big Questions

November 29, -0001
Professor Jerry Pattengale is encouraged that college students today seem to be asking the big questions once again. In his review of Anthony T. Kronman's Education's End (Books & Culture, November/December 2009) Dr. Pattengale is hopeful that this portends the beginning of a new era in higher education, one in…


November 29, -0001
I'm not a big fan of Bill O'Reilly, but I find, in spite of myself, and of his enormous ego, I generally agree with what seem to be his positions on most matters. Until last night. Responding to an email Mr. O'Reilly glibly asserted that "you can't make public policy…

Is Your Gospel Too Small?

November 29, -0001
Sitting here looking at a book galley I need to read - a book entitled Your Church is Too Small by John Armstrong - I'm reminded of a book from a generation ago by J. B. Phillips, Your God is Too Small. In that book Phillips examined and debunked a…

Fill the Earth?

November 29, -0001
The Economist reports (October 31st) that fertility rates worldwide are falling and that, before too much longer, the world will reach a point of population stability. Just enough children will be born each year to replace, but not increase, the existing population of around 9 billion. The reasons for this…

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