Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, November 30, 2015

A Definition of Christian Charity
Cecil Bohanon, Indiana Policy Review

Kwang Jin Kim was born to a middle-class family in North Korea. In his book “Under the Same Sky” he gives a first-hand account of his family’s fall to destitution during the North Korean famine in the late 1990’s. Forced to sell all it had to get enough to eat, the family eventually splits up as they moved from relative to relative in a desperate attempt to survive.

Why George Washington Thought the Practice of Gratitude Was Essential for the American Character
Arthur Milikh, The Daily Signal

Our two greatest presidents, George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, respectively thought Thanksgiving sufficiently important to initiate its national celebration and to later revive this tradition.

Poll Watch: Democrats, Even Clinton Supporters, Warm to Socialism
Giovanni Russonello, New York Times

Fifty-six percent of those Democratic primary voters questioned said they felt positive about socialism as a governing philosophy, versus 29 percent who took a negative view.

A Review of “Thinking Biblically About Business Ethics”
Andrew Spencer, TGC

One challenge in developing a biblical business ethic for the 21st century is that the marketplace has changed since the books of the Bible were written. There are principles and analogies that can be brought forward, but the cultural distance is significant.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, November 27, 2015

Pope lands in Africa hoping to bridge Christian-Muslim faultlines
Philip Pullella and George Obulutsa , Reuters

Pope Francis said on Wednesday he wanted to offer “spiritual and material” support to Africans on his first tour of the continent, where he will address a fast-growing Catholic congregation and seek to heal Christian-Muslim divisions.

How Friendly Is Your State To Businesses? See the Rankings
David Allen, The Daily Signal

Last week, the Tax Foundation released its State Business Tax Climate Index for 2016. This annual report ranks all fifty states (plus D.C.) on how hospitable their tax systems are to businesses.

Supreme Court to consider a small town case with huge repercussions on the First Amendment rights of all Americans
Melinda Skea, The Becket Fund

The High Court will hear the case of a New Jersey police officer who was demoted for picking up a mayoral campaign sign for his bedridden mother. The case, which involves a bizarre story of small town politics, will affect fundamental First Amendment rights such as freedom of assembly. Becket asked the Court to protect the officer’s rights.

Stop Saying That Public School Teachers Are ‘Underpaid’
Jason Richwine, The Corner

One of the more enduring education-policy myths is that public-school teachers are “underpaid” on average, and therefore that raising teacher pay across the board would improve student achievement.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How Market Principles Will Help Make Food Banks More Efficient This Thanksgiving
Max Lies, The Daily Signal

With Thanksgiving around the corner, charitable food banks across America are gearing up for their busiest donation season. Individuals and local firms supply a lot of the food, but donations also come by the truckload from major manufacturers and suppliers like Kraft, Con-Agra, and Walmart.

Socialism in America?
David T. Koyzis, First Things

Why then have Americans lost their fear of socialists such that many are prepared to put one in the Oval Office? The major reason, I believe, is that the generation that lived through the totalitarian experiments of the last century is gradually passing from the scene.

Immigration and the moral status of borders
Luke Bretherton, Reformation 21

In debates about immigration a crucial issue is the moral and political status of borders. Do we think borders are good or bad, a necessary evil or a moral necessity?

Strong Families, Prosperous States
Elise Daniel, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

According to Bradford Wilcox, director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, the retreat from marriage has increased child poverty and inequality, hitting low-income families the hardest.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Let’s Reclaim November For Giving Thanks, Not Greed
Patrick Hedger, The Federalist

Life is short, as the Paris attacks have shown. Use it to do something bigger than whining about minor irritations, as November traditionally reminds us.

Nuns who rescue sex slaves expand efforts to 140 countries
Ellen Wulfhorst, Reuters

An army of Catholic religious sisters who rescue victims of human trafficking by posing as prostitutes to infiltrate brothels and buying children being sold into slavery, is expanding to 140 countries, its chairman said Wednesday.

Getting real with the new homelessness numbers
Kevin C. Corinth, AEI Ideas

The latest round of homelessness numbers was released yesterday. But as the Obama administration celebrates yet another decrease in homelessness, several cities are declaring homeless states of emergency. So what is really going on with homelessness in America? I dug into the new data to get some answers.

Millennials are less religious than older Americans, but just as spiritual
Becka A. Alper, Pew Research

Only about half of Millennials (adults who were born between 1981 and 1996) say they believe in God with absolute certainty, and only about four-in-ten Millennials say religion is very important in their lives.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, November 23, 2015

Why So Few Syrian Christian Refugees? For the Same Reason You Can’t Find Orphans in Haitian Orphanages
Jonathan Witt, The Stream

There are almost no Christian refugees from Syria for the same reason there are almost no orphans in Haitian orphanages.

Reimagining Care for the Poor at Ave: Our Conversations
Erika Bachiochi, Mirror of Justice

I was grateful to take part in an inspired and productive all-day meeting on “Reimagining Care for the Poor” at Ave Maria University with some really terrific out-of-the-box thinkers earlier this month. We came together to discuss–and really reconceive–parish-based solutions for caring for the poor.

Is ‘The Hobbit’ Marxist?
James Clark, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

The stories we tell reveal much about what we believe, so it is worth asking: can The Hobbit accurately be described as Marxist?

Rights Through Obligations: The Case of Free Speech
Christopher O. Tollefsen, Public Discourse

Some rights are grounded in the need for agents to fulfill their perceived responsibilities, including their obligation to pursue knowledge. This obligation, along with the communal nature of inquiry, supports a right to free speech that acquires particular stringency in those communities where inquiry is most essential.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, November 20, 2015

Refugees: Prudence isn’t Cruel and Tokenism Is Not Virtue
John Mark N. Reynolds, Eidos

A state must act (somewhat) more prudently than an individual. A state must recognize unintended consequences to even the most charitable acts.

The human right to school choice
Wilton D. Gregory and Jim Kelly, Washington Times

Public funding for private schools would benefit everyone.

China accused of trying to ‘co-opt and emasculate’ Christianity
Tom Phillips and Harriet Sherwood, The Guardian

Secretive conference to assess future of rapidly growing faith triggers concerns Communist party may seek to bring church in line with state agenda.

Prosecute global warming skeptics?
Gene Veith, Cranach

A group of 20 scientists is urging the president to prosecute scientists and organizations that question global warming. Now a Rasmussen survey has found that 27% of Democrats agree with that approach. So do 11% of Republicans and 12% of Independents.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, November 19, 2015

Scholar: Economic & Religious Freedom Are ‘Inextricably Tied’
Joseph Rossell, Juicy Ecumenism

Christians concerned about religious liberty should also passionately defend economic liberty. That’s what Dr. Jay W. Richards, a professor at Catholic University and Executive Editor of The Stream, argued during a talk at the Family Research Council (FRC) on November 12. He contended that religious and economic freedom were “inextricably tied” and demonstrated that few societies retain one without the other.

Nobel Winner Angus Deaton: ‘I Both Love Inequality and I’m Terrified of It’
Jeffrey Sparshott, Wall Street Journal

“People on left have to better understand what are the benefits of inequality and people on right have to understand better what the dangers are….It has to become properly hardwired into the American democratic debate in a way that it hasn’t really been,” he said at The Wall Street Journal CEO Council annual meeting.

Should We Pray For ISIS To Be Defeated Or Converted?
Russell Moore

Over the weekend many of us watched with horror and heartbreak as reports came of terrorism in Paris. At least 120 people were killed in what appears to be a coordinated operation by the Islamic State (ISIS), a terror organization that has murdered thousands of innocent people over the last year, including many Christians.

Report: Efforts to punish sex traffickers improving
Gaye Clark, WORLD News Service

When the advocacy group Shared Hope released its first report card on efforts to combat sex trafficking of America’s children, 26 states received a failing grade. This year’s report card, released Nov. 11, proved a surprise to Shared Hope founder Linda Smith.