Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Ed West: Is moral change speeding up?

    Ed West at The Spectator: “Morality in my lifetime has changed a great deal. In The Blank Slate Steven Pinker points to a large list of issues where public opinion has altered; some we’ve become more tolerant of, some more censorious. Consider things like drink driving or smoking around children, and how our perception has changed. Religion puts a break on such change, perhaps in the same way that printing and literacy does – by allowing a code by which everyone can communicate rather than developing their own subcultures. But with European Christianity in steady decline these past few decades, a common moral language has gone too.”


  • Posted: 04/17/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: blogs.spectator.co.uk

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NRO interviews historian Rodney Stark: God and Man and Moderns

    National Review Online: “The fundamental advantage was belief in the Judeo-Christian God: a conscious, rational being who created a rational universe that runs according to rational principles that can be discovered and comprehended by human beings. From this came two vital features that separated the West from the rest: faith in reason and faith in progress. As a result, Westerners developed science, because they alone believed it to be possible, and for the same reason they devoted immense efforts to progress, because they assumed everything could be improved. In contrast, both China and the Ottoman Empire not only assumed that the present was inferior to the past, but they often actually hindered progress: Both outlawed mechanical clocks.”


  • Posted: 04/17/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.nationalreview.com

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Lambda Legal sues Ill. doctor and clinic for denying hormone therapy to transgender woman

Religious but not Mormon? The church-owned Deseret News considers you a growth market

    Nieman Journalism Lab: “Fifty-six percent of Americans are ‘Like-Minded Believers, who value faith, family, caring for others, and share a concern for the decline in moral values,’ according to an internal Deseret Media Companies study. That’s the audience Deseret News is aiming to capitalize on with its expansion of coverage. Gilbert said Deseret’s coverage, both local and national, is built on six tenets that it says matter to that readership — family, faith, education, care for the poor, values in media, and financial responsibility.”


  • Posted: 04/16/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.niemanlab.org

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MI: Bay County Board passes “LGBT nondiscrimination personnel policy changes”

Obama taps gay bishop to wrap Easter Prayer Breakfast with invocation

Harvey Milk stamp to be dedicated at White House May 22nd

    U.S. Postal Service press release: “Harvey Milk was a visionary leader who became one of the first openly gay elected officials in the U.S. when he won a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1977. Milk’s achievements gave hope and confidence to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in the United States and elsewhere at a time when the community was encountering widespread hostility and discrimination. Milk believed that government should represent all citizens, ensuring equality and providing needed services.”


  • Posted: 04/14/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: about.usps.com

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Remarks by the President at Easter Prayer Breakfast

    “So this Easter Week, of course we recognize that there’s a lot of pain and a lot of sin and a lot of tragedy in this world, but we’re also overwhelmed by the grace of an awesome God. We’re reminded how He loves us, so deeply, that He gave his only begotten Son so that we might live through Him. And in these Holy Days, we recall all that Jesus endured for us — the scorn of the crowds and the pain of the crucifixion, in our Christian religious tradition we celebrate the glory of the Resurrection — all so that we might be forgiven of our sins and granted everlasting life. ”


  • Posted: 04/14/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.whitehouse.gov

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Statement from the President on Passover

Watchdog finds IRS employees promoted Obama in 2012

“Judge OKs transgender inmate’s hormone treatments”

The Left has its own law factories

Jim Geraghty: The Progressive Aristocracy and their separate set of rules

    Jim Geraghty at National Review: “What kind of a country do you get when political leaders are driven by a desire to feel that they are more enlightened, noble, tolerant, wise, sensitive, conscious, and smart than most other people? The evidence before us suggests progressives’ ideal society would be one where they enjoy great power to regulate the lives of others and impose restrictions and limitations they themselves would never accept in their own lives. Very few people object to an aristocracy with special rights and privileges as long as they’re in it.”


  • Posted: 04/02/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.nationalreview.com

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President Obama to military brass in 2010: Back DADT repeal or resign

“DOJ trains cops to work with transgender people”

Ross Douthat: “The Christian Penumbra”

    Ross Douthat in the New York Times: “The social goods associated with faith flow almost exclusively from religious participation, not from affiliation or nominal belief. And where practice ceases or diminishes, in what you might call America’s ‘Christian penumbra,’ the remaining residue of religion can be socially damaging instead.”


  • Posted: 03/31/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.nytimes.com

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Deroy Murdock: “Gay by genes or by choice?”

GOP donors back Adelson on online gambling

    Associated Press: “Govs. Rick Perry of Texas and Nikki Haley of South Carolina have submitted letters in recent days to congressional leaders stating that gambling in the virtual world compromises the ability of states to control gambling within their borders. Weeks earlier, Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana wrote that he would do everything he could to stop Internet gambling from spreading in his state.”


  • Posted: 03/28/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: hosted.ap.org

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Andrew Walker: World Vision and Biblical witness

    Andrew Walker at First Things: “Of all the back-and-forth that came from the World Vision imbroglio this week, there’s at least one other reason to be encouraged about their reversing course, aside from their board taking the necessary steps to correct a gravely wrong error. World Vision says something about evangelical identity. . . . Leaving aside the (valid) criticisms of para-church ministry structure and its lack of ecclesiological grounding, World Vision’s decision to reverse course from a patently unbiblical and patently unhistorical position, demonstrates that evangelicalism has boundary markers.”


  • Posted: 03/27/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.firstthings.com

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Michael Brendan Dougherty: The religious roots of the elite liberal agenda

    Michael Brendan Dougherty at The Week: “This ‘class’ that has outsized influence on America’s moral and spiritual life is roughly the same class that has always had it: Mainline Protestants, only now without the doctrinal Protestantism or the churchgoing. . . . The post-Protestants Bottum identifies have just that, ‘a social gospel, without the gospel. For all of them, the sole proof of redemption is the holding of a proper sense of social ills. The only available confidence about their salvation, as something superadded to experience, is the self-esteem that comes with feeling they oppose the social evils of bigotry and power and the groupthink of the mob.’”


  • Posted: 03/27/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: theweek.com

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NYT reporter: Obama administration “greatest enemy of press freedom” in a generation

    Daily Caller: “New York Times reporter James Risen called the Obama administration ‘the greatest enemy of press freedom that we have encountered in at least a generation’ on Friday, explaining that the White House seeks to control the flow of information and those that refuse to play along ‘will be punished.’”


  • Posted: 03/24/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: dailycaller.com

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Pete Spiliakos: When dissent is equated with violence

John Hayward: The one-sided call to disarm in the culture wars

    John Hayward at The Federalist: “If there’s a call to disarm in the culture wars, it’s entirely one-sided. Newt Gingrich ran into trouble, early in his 2012 presidential run, by remarking that he wanted to avoid ‘right-wing social engineering.’ The left wing loudly and proudly engages in social engineering every single day. . . . There’s a much deeper understanding on the Left about the way government power changes society. . . . When the government grows to its current size, everything is a social issue.”


  • Posted: 03/20/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: thefederalist.com

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Arkansas: “School superintendent defends decision to censor gay student’s profile”

Ross Kaminsky: Why liberals attempt to silence honest debate

    Ross Kaminsky at The Federalist: “The breadth and depth of suppression of dissent by ‘liberals’ throughout our most important institutions makes clear that this is not a tactic occasionally implemented by a loose cannon or ‘rogue employee in Cincinnati.’ Instead, it is a determined strategy of the entire political left, implying recognition of the inherent weakness and unpopularity of their philosophy and their policies, and the distances they are willing to go to impose both on an unwilling populace.”


  • Posted: 03/19/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: thefederalist.com

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14 charged in online child exploitation network

David P. Goldman: The rise of secular religion

Eugene Volokh: First Amendment right of access to judicial proceedings

“Boston LGBT group unlikely to march on St Patrick’s Day after talks collapse”

Commission finds no reason to exclude transgender Americans from military

Samuel Gregg: Why liberty isn’t enough

    Samual Gregg at Public Discourse: “This salience of reason in protecting liberty points to another factor that should help to forge compelling alternatives to modern liberalism: that other values besides liberty need to be brought into play. That’s partly because we must reclaim some of the normative ground that modern liberals have long asserted as their own. But it’s also because (1) greater or restored freedoms cannot by themselves resolve some of our most important contemporary problems; and (2) the maintenance of freedom itself depends on the strength of other values throughout the social order.”


  • Posted: 03/13/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.thepublicdiscourse.com

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Terry Eagleton: An unbelieving age

    Terry Eagleton at Commonweal: “In an age in which the concept of certainty smacks of the tyrant and technocrat, a certain agnosticism becomes a virtue. Indeterminacy and undecidability are accounted goods in themselves. Conviction suggests a consistency of self that does not sit easily with the volatile, adaptive subject of advanced capitalism. Besides, too much doctrine is bad for consumption. Beliefs are potentially contentious affairs, which is good neither for business nor for political stability. They are also commercially superfluous. The fervent ideological rhetoric needed to found the system thus fades as it unfolds. As long as its citizens roll into work, pay their taxes, and refrain from assaulting police officers, they can believe pretty much what they like.”


  • Posted: 03/12/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.commonwealmagazine.org

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Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer won’t seek reelection

House passes bill to sue President over enforcement of federal laws

Damon Linker: America’s love-hate relationship with pornography

    Damon Linker at The Week: “Unless millennials reverse course as they age (possible but improbable), America’s overall disapproval of porn is likely to decline dramatically over the coming decades. As that happens, the country’s conflicted feelings about it will likely get resolved, too, replaced by an easygoing, non-judgmental acceptance of any and all consensual sexual behavior, very much including the conspicuous consumption of porn.”


  • Posted: 03/12/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: theweek.com

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In-depth report details economics of sex trade

ObamaCare’s secret mandate exemption

W. James Antle: The GOP’s libertarian moment has arrived

God and sexuality at Bowdoin

W. Bradford Wilcox: Millennials are underemployed, unhitched, and unchurched at record rates

    W. Bradford Wilcox at National Review: “The portrait painted of Millennial Americans by the Pew Research Center in its new report Millennials in Adulthood is not rosy. Sure, compared with earlier generations, Millennials (now aged 18 to 33) are exceptionally tolerant, optimistic about their economic future, and connected to friends, family, and colleagues on the ‘new platforms of the digital era’ — from Facebook to Twitter. But this report makes clear that Millennial ties to the core human institutions that have sustained the American experiment — work, marriage, and civil society — are worryingly weak.”


  • Posted: 03/11/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.nationalreview.com

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Pharmaceutical company won’t appeal 9th Circuit “sexual orientation in jury selection” ruling

Hawaii Rep. opposes SPLC “tolerance” training program for teachers

The totalitarian myth of the free press

    Michael Hanby at The Federalist: “There is a pious myth . . . that the free press . . . is a bulwark against absolutism and thus the indispensable guardian of a free society. . . . And yet the global media echo chamber routinely exhibits just the sort of systematic thoughtlessness that Arendt thought characteristic of absolutism. The examples are legion, from the routine exaltation of the trivial, to the hysterical and lopsided coverage of the Komen/Planned Parenthood fiasco, to the lionization of Sandra Fluke and Wendy Davis, to the ceaseless celebration of all things gay, to the dismissive treatment of the threat to religious freedom, to the media blackout of the Gosnell trial.”


  • Posted: 03/10/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: thefederalist.com

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Ross Douthat on the four factions of the Republican Party

    Ross Douthat at The New York Times: “One faction is centrist (think John McCain’s 2000 supporters, or Jon Huntsman’s rather smaller 2012 support), one is moderately conservative (think the typical Mitt Romney or Bob Dole voter), one is socially conservative (think Mike Huckabee or Rick Santorum backers), and one is very conservative but more secular (think Gingrich voters last time, or Steve Forbes voters much further back). . . . But let me conclude with one that seems a little more likely: a rerun of Bush’s 2000 path, in which Marco Rubio wins by uniting religious and moderate conservatives.”


  • Posted: 03/10/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.nytimes.com

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In Prop. 8 ruling’s wake, initiative sponsors take protective steps

Lesbian couple accuses Vermont town of discrimination

Social Cons in retreat at CPAC

Rand Paul wins 2014 CPAC straw poll

Transgender athlete sues CrossFit for banning her from competing as female

Patrick Deneen: What’s wrong with academic freedom

Portland cabby violated lesbian couple’s rights, state finds

De Blasio’s attack on charter schools tells us the left’s priorities

Boston parochial school pulls out of St. Pat’s parade to avoid “condoning homosexual lifestyle”

Russell Moore and Andrew Walker: What should Christians think of gov’t that criminalize homosexuality

In New York City, making strip clubs go dry, then go away

    New York Times: “The strip club industry is under broad attack in New York, as opponents have embraced a startlingly effective strategy: Spare the strip clubs, but punish their liquor. In the last several years, community leaders have found increasing success petitioning the State Liquor Authority to revoke the liquor licenses of numerous strip clubs in New York and deny the applications of new clubs. The opponents cite crime, noise or other quality-of-life issues, or highlight a club owner’s lack of qualifications or possible criminal ties.”


  • Posted: 03/03/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.nytimes.com

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“Gay, lesbian troops perform in drag at Kadena Air Base fundraiser”

“Disney ends funding to Boy Scouts over gay policy”

NYC mayor marches in “gay-friendly” St. Pat’s parade, will skip March 17th

Big-money donors demand larger say in campaign strategy

SB 1062 stirred alarm in GOP

Peggy Noonan: America and the aggressive Left

Judge: Not safe to display American flag in American high school

Complaint: IRS improperly withheld documents on new nonprofit rules

CPAC un-invites American Atheists

Study: Co-location does not harm traditional public schools

FCC backs off newsroom study

Supreme Court calls for new briefs on child pornography

The FCC wades into the newsroom

    Ajit Pai at The Wall Street Journal: “The government has no place pressuring media organizations into covering certain stories. Unfortunately, the Federal Communications Commission, where I am a commissioner, does not agree. Last May the FCC proposed an initiative to thrust the federal government into newsrooms across the country . . . The purpose of the CIN, according to the FCC, is to ferret out information from television and radio broadcasters about ‘the process by which stories are selected’ and how often stations cover ‘critical information needs,’ along with ‘perceived station bias” and “perceived responsiveness to underserved populations.’”


  • Posted: 02/21/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: online.wsj.com

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Are two actual people still required for a relationship?

    Robert Weiss at Psychology Today: “[A] large number of people across the world are already growing more interested in virtual and/or robotic partners than real-life versions of the same. In Japan, virtual (avatar) girlfriends and to a lesser extent boyfriends are actually quite popular. . . . The next logical step, of course, is robot romance. Scientists have already created robots that can wash your hair, serve you tea, vacuum your house, mow your lawn, and even interact with you socially. With each successive generation these robots become more and more human in appearance and behavior. And they’re already pretty darn real. In fact, studies have shown that troubled children often respond more readily to therapeutic contact with a robot than a human caregiver.”


  • Posted: 02/21/2014
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  • Category: Miscellaneous
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  • Source: www.psychologytoday.com

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Conservative Political Action Conference welcomes GOProud

FCC won’t appeal ruling on internet neutrality

“The evolutionary puzzle of homosexuality”

Winning the war on charter schools

George Mason U. to offer gender-neutral housing next fall

HHS won’t say if Sebelius is fundraising for Obamacare