Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Friday, December 6, 2013

Turkish leaders want to convert the Hagia Sophia back into a mosque
Jacob Resneck, Religion News Service

“If it is to reopen as a house of worship, then it should open as a Christian church,” the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew — the Archbishop of Constantinople — told Turkish newspaper Milliyet in February, saying that the Hagia Sophia had served as a Christian church for hundreds of years before Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453.

The Free Market is Answer to World Poverty, Says Theologian
Tyler O’Neil, Christian Post

In a presentation of his new book at the Family Research Council, biblical theologian Wayne Grudem argued that poor countries can become rich only by producing their own prosperity, and that the free market is not only the economic answer, but in tune with the Bible’s moral teachings.

Why Do You Work?
Stephen Nichols, Ligonier Ministries

Why do you work? I once heard a rather depressing answer that went something like this: “We get a job so we can buy our kids shoes, so they can go to school, so they can get a job someday, so that they can buy their kids shoes, so that they … ”

Separation of Church and Church
Bailey Pritchett, The Weekly Standard

When property law and canon law collide.

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Thursday, December 5, 2013

Rousseau on the Reformation
Jordan Ballor, The Calvinist International

In a recent interview, the historian Molly Worthen describes her investigation into the relationship between evangelicals and authority, and provides an explanation that what is often identified as evangelical “anti-intellectualism” is actually a struggle to reconcile different sources of authority.

Ukrainian Protesters Find Powerful Ally in Orthodox Church
David M. Herszenhorn, New York Times

In recent days, the Kyivan Patriarchate, which controls St. Michael’s, has emerged as a powerful ally of the thousands of protesters demanding the resignation of President Viktor F. Yanukovich and the revival of the far-reaching political and trade accords with the European Union that he has refused to sign.

Obama’s corporatist contraceptive mandate
Timothy P. Carney, Washington Examiner

Look at the contraception mandate from almost any angle, and you see the corporatism. Sometimes it’s on the surface, and sometimes it’s implicit in the arguments.

Fighting Poverty With Actual Evidence
Stephen J. Dubner, Freakonomics

What are the best evidence-based ways to alleviate poverty?

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Wednesday, December 4, 2013

What Is the Religious Freedom Restoration Act?
Eugene Volokh, The Volokh Conspiracy

Should you be entitled to an exemption from the generally applicable law, because of your religious beliefs? Or should the government be free to apply the law to you just as it does to others?

The history of the left-right divide: A centuries-old argument defines our politics, and offers a way forward
Yuval Levin, Salon

The modern divide between liberals and conservatives dates back to Burke and Paine. But there’s also common ground.

Placing Blame Where Blame is Due
Nicholas Freiling, Values & Capitalism

As human beings find themselves in dire financial, medical, social or emotional circumstances, they often cope with guilt by shifting blame from themselves to others, or even to objects.

Some Questions for Minimum-Wage Proponents
Don Boudreaux, Cafe Hayek

Are National Football League officials unscientific dolts when they assume that increasing the fines for helmet-to-helmet hits will reduce the frequency of such hits?

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Understanding the Plight of the Poor: Why Strong Families are Essential to Liberty
Joy Pullmann, Values & Capitalism

“How well do you think Americans in the main understand and empathize with low-income Americans?”

Fighting Poverty With Actual Evidence
Stephen J. Dubner, Freakonomics

What are the best evidence-based ways to alleviate poverty?

Rights are Obligations, and That’s the Problem
Art Carden, EconLog

The problem with rights is that one person’s right is another person’s obligation.

Can Farmers be Capitalists?
Kristie Eshelman, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Is economic freedom consistent with environmental stewardship?

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Monday, December 2, 2013

What’s Behind the Stunning Decrease in Global Poverty?
James R. Rogers, First Things

Most observers would likely concede that the decline in extreme poverty results from a combination of factors. But there remains disagreement over what is the main cause, or set of causes, of the decline.

Handsome Is as Handsome Gives
Arthur C. Brooks , Wall Street Journal

Donors to charity aren’t merely generous souls. They’re happier, healthier and better looking too.

What Does the Image of God Have to Do With Economics?
Shawn Ritenour, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

One of the chief ways God communicates his glory to us is through his works. Theologians call this general revelation.

American Jurisprudence Has Made A Mess Of Religious Freedom
Eric Teetsel and Andrew Walker, The Federalist

Religious freedom as nothing more than exemption is concession; little more than the slow and incremental surrender of a basic human right.

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving and the Constitution
Carson Holloway, Public Discourse

Strict separation of church and state would require us to throw out Thanksgiving as a religious holiday proclaimed by the president. Instead, we should embrace Thanksgiving and throw out strict separationism as a misguided interpretation of the Constitution.

Reducing Poverty and Raising Prosperity
Tom Donohue, Free Enterprise

Though tremendous strides have been made in reducing global poverty, the World Bank estimates that 1 billion people will be living in extreme deprivation by 2015.

Sam Rocha’s Strange and Startling Philosophy of Education
Stephen H. Webb, First Things

Samuel D. Rocha does not just think outside the box. When it comes to education, his thought is downright otherworldly.

This Thanksgiving, Stop Idolizing the Pilgrims
Review by Thomas S. Kidd, Christianity Today

An evangelical historian teaches us how to think critically about the heroes of our past.

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Court Confronts Religious Rights of Corporations
Adam Liptak, New York Times

Legal experts say the court is all but certain to step in, setting the stage for another major decision on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act.

How Obamacare Discourages Work and Marriage
Chris Jacobs, The Foundry

We were told that Obamacare was supposed to be compassionate toward the needy in America.

Common Core: The Biggest Election Issue Washington Prefers to Ignore

Joy Pullmann, The Federalist

Basically, Common Core touches everything in U.S. education except bus routes.

Time to pay the piper
The Economist

America’s economic difficulties are mostly political.

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Monday, November 25, 2013

Judge Strikes Down Housing Tax Break for Pastors
Katelyn Beaty, Christianity Today

One of the most important tax breaks available to American pastors is unconstitutional.

C.S. Lewis: Scholar to the Common Man
Gracy Olmstead, The American Conservative

Some people have said C.S. Lewis sounds as if he’s talking “down” to his readers. But his style is only childish in the sense that it is grammatically simple.

Should High Schools Offer More Job Training?
Sophie Quinton, The Atlantic

Some states are rolling back high school graduation requirements to help prepare students who will enter the workforce after graduation.

That Hideous State
Joe Rigney, National Review

C. S. Lewis’s social critiques are more relevant than ever in the Age of Obama.

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Friday, November 22, 2013

Pope Francis calls for full religious freedom in the Middle East
Cindy Wooden, Catholic Herald

After a two-hour private meeting today with the patriarchs and major archbishops of the Eastern Catholic churches, Pope Francis prayed for peace and full religious freedom throughout the Middle East.

Making Modernity Human: Can Christian humanism redeem an age of ideology?
Bradley J. Birzer, The Imaginative Conservative

“Humanism is a tradition of culture and ethics,” proclaimed the English historian Christopher Dawson, “founded on the study of humane letters.” The moment St. Paul quoted the Stoics in his mission to Athens—“In Him we move and live and have our being”— he bridged the humanist and Christian worlds.

We’re Losing The Two Things Tocqueville Said Mattered Most About American Democracy
Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry, The Federalist

In Democracy in America, Alexis de Tocqueville doesn’t waste any time letting you know what impresses him most about America. To Tocqueville, equality and, to a slightly lesser — but very important — extent, religiosity, are the two foundations of the American experiment.

Getting a Job at Walmart Is Harder than Getting into Harvard
Daniel Gross, The Daily Beast

Despite pushback from the city council, Walmart will open its first two stores in D.C. next month. But getting a job there will prove difficult since the chain received 38 applications for each job opening.

Blog author: jcarter
posted by on Thursday, November 21, 2013

Church and State (Dept.): John Kerry Gets Religion
Melissa Steffan, Christianity Today

New adviser will (hopefully) make faith less foreign in foreign affairs.

Not a “Prosperity Gospel”
Greg Forster, Kern Pastors Network

Churches should not only empower people to do their work well, but should help them to have a broader vision of economic flourishing and how communities can achieve it.

Greece: Taxpayer-Funded Mosque Planned in Athens
Soeren Kern, Gatestone Institute

… plans for building a large state-sponsored mosque remained stalled until the Muslim Association of Greece—a group that claims to represent all Muslims in Greece, and is linked to the Muslim Brotherhood—staged a series of highly provocative mass public prayer sessions across Athens aimed at pressuring the government into building an official mosque.

What Can the New Testament Teach Us About Fighting Poverty?
David Kotter, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

The New Testament says a lot about the underlying causes of poverty. Does it also have anything to say about poverty’s possible solutions?