Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
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An Approach to Ending Poverty That Works
Susan Davis, Harvard Business Review

If we’re to end poverty, we can’t ignore them. All of us — researchers, policymakers, governments, social entrepreneurs, nonprofit development groups, microfinance institutions, corporations, and philanthropists — have a role to play in bringing them into the widening zone of prosperity. And we may have found a way to do this.

Pope Francis Is Fair Game For Criticism, From Left Or Right
D.C. McAllister, The Federalist

When Pope Francis damages the cause of liberty across the globe, it’s only right that its defenders should speak up.

A Biblical Mandate for Servant Leadership
Austin Burkhart, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Jesus knew that some day his tiny band of followers would have authority over large groups of people. While he was with them, he taught them many lessons to use after he left.

Are Modi’s pro-business plans a path out of poverty for India’s poor?
PBS Newshour

Modi has amassed supporters throughout the country who praise his economic vision by creating jobs and improving the country’s infrastructure. But critics argue many states, whose residents live below the country’s poverty line, are still lacking in education and health care. Fred de Sam Lazaro reports.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, January 26, 2015
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No Worship Services in Public Schools, New York Mayor Tells Supreme Court
Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra, Christianity Today

Bill de Blasio campaigned on the promise of letting churches rent school space. Now he’s asking the Supreme Court to prohibit it.

What Would Kuyper Do?
David T. Koyzis, First Things

During his political career, Kuyper worked, not to turn the Netherlands into a godly commonwealth, but more modestly to secure a place in the public square for his Reformed Christian (Gereformeerd) supporters in the face of the secularizing ideologies spawned by the French Revolution.

Religious Freedom Reigns Over Beards And Obamacare
Matt Bowman, The Federalist

The Supreme Court upheld similar applications of religious freedom in cases with very different vote margins. Why?

3 Leadership Lessons From Winston Churchill
Gavin Ortlund, The Gospel Coalition

This weekend marks the 50th anniversary of Winston Churchill’s death. We might draw many lessons from Churchill’s life, and not all of them salutary (his views on religion, women, and alcohol come to mind). Nevertheless, Churchill was an inspiring and effective leader in a time of crisis, and it is appropriate to consider what he might teach us today about leadership.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, January 23, 2015
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The Fundamental Precept for Humane Economics
Wilhelm Röpke, Intercollegiate Review

Is the standpoint of liberalism the right one to deliver his attack? In a certain sense, yes, if liberalism is understood as faith in a particular “social technique,” that is, in a particular economic order.

Nature’s Way to Cut Government Waste
Stephen Masty, The Imaginative Conservative

Government clearly cannot clean up like Mother Nature can, for two reasons. First are malign incentives that work against reform. Bureaucrats have a lot to do and resent the interruption, as well as reform potentially ending programmes and paperwork that they think necessary.

The Importance of Prayer in the Workplace
Caroline Cross , Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Rituals and routines matter and yet Christians often disregard what should be the most important workplace habit: prayer.

Business school bishops
The Economist

The Church of England encourages its clergy to get some management education

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, January 22, 2015
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Here’s why your state may be expanding religious freedom protections this year
Mark A. Kellner, Deseret News

The rush to enforce same-sex marriage across the country may trigger state legislative efforts to enact local versions of the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Supporters say cultural changes make this necessary; opponents fear boycotts.

Bible colleges sue for right to issue degrees
John O’Connor, Associated Press

Bible colleges in Illinois have filed a federal lawsuit against state education regulators, seeking the unencumbered right to award degrees to students who complete their programs.

Should We Leave Our Children Inheritances?
Randy Alcorn, Eternal Perspectives Ministries

“A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children” (Proverbs 13:22). As a result, many Christians defend and justify leaving vast sums of wealth to their children and grandchildren. I think in order to understand the principle behind this verse, we need to compare what an inheritance meant in biblical times, versus what an inheritance means in this culture today.

The Latest Debate Over Catholic Social Thought
Gerald J. Russello, Crisis Magazine

Pope Francis’ statements about economics (and related questions, such as environmentalism and “fracking”) have caused much consternation among conservative Catholics in the United States. The Holy Father’s comments on the “greed” of capitalism and his seeming belief that capitalism causes income inequality rather than providing explosive growth and increased prosperity historically seem without nuance at best, and ignorant at worst.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
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In China, a church-state showdown of biblical proportions
Robert Marquand, Christian Science Monitor

Christianity is booming in China, propelling it toward becoming the world’s largest Christian nation. But as religion grows, it spurs a government crackdown.

To rescue girls from sex trafficking, Indian activists confront tradition and family ties
PBS Newshour

In India, a new law punishes human traffickers rather than the girls who have been forced into prostitution, sometimes by family members. In the second report of a two-part series, special correspondent Fred de Sam Lazaro joins human rights activists and the police as they go into homes and brothels in search of victims of the sex trade.

Three Ways You and Your Church Can Effectively Fight Poverty
Elise Amyx , Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

There is no one formula for charity and poverty alleviation because God has all equipped us to fight poverty differently. Everyone has different relationships, resources, information, and strengths they can contribute.

Minimum-Wage Laws Are a Triumph of Emotion over Logic
Daniel J. Mitchell, The Federalist

It’s very frustrating to write about the minimum wage. How often can you make the elementary observation, after all, that you’ll get more unemployment if you try to make businesses pay some workers more than they’re worth?

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
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How the Supreme Court Reacted to This Town Allowing Politicians Bigger Signs Than Churches
Hans von Spakovsky, The Daily Signal

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Reed v. Town of Gilbert, a challenge by a church to a town ordinance regulating signs.

Niger protesters torched 45 churches – police
BBC

At least 10 people have been killed and 45 churches set on fire since protests erupted in Niger over the French magazine Charlie Hebdo’s depiction of the Prophet Muhammad, police say.

How much is a (micro)life worth?
Tim Harford, The Undercover Economist

Rather than asking “What is the value of human life?” Schelling and Carlson asked what we are willing to pay to reduce the risk of premature death by spending money on road safety or hospitals. The value of a life was replaced with the value of a statistical life.

Venezuela’s Bishops Have A Message For Pope Francis on Communism
Monica Showalter, Investor’s Business Daily

In a refreshingly powerful and direct statement, Venezuela’s bishops Monday blamed “Marxist socialism” and “communism” by name for the horrors and chaos gripping their country, according to a story in El Universal.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, January 16, 2015
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Charlie Hebdo is Not Enough
Jason Scott Jones and John Zmirak, The Catholic Thing

The attack on Charlie Hebdo was an assault on Christendom. Magazines that publish sophomoric cartoons mocking religion are, paradoxically, part of the Body of Christ – if perhaps its lower intestine.

Sold in Myanmar and trafficked to China
Jonah Fisher, BBC

Eight thousand yuan ($1,300; £830): That was the price for a cute four-year-old Burmese girl from a broken home. Crouched in the doorway of her bamboo house, Khin Khin Oo’s grandmother Ma Shan told me the story. “I grow corn and rice but my son is a heroin addict so we have no money,” she said.

Do No Harm: An Interview With Thomas Sowell
David Harsanyi, The Federalist

The legendary economist talks to The Federalist about government’s most destructive economic intrusions.

Maybe China Can’t Reverse Its Child Limit
The American Interest

The Chinese government is finding it harder to reverse the lasting effects of the one-child policy than it thought. Faced with the prospect of an aging population supported by too few young people, China decided in 2013 that it would allow couples to apply to have a second child.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, January 15, 2015
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Virtue and Free Speech
Mark Judge, Acculturated

Defending offensive speech is not a virtuous act. This is a fact that seems to have been lost in the anger and anxiety over the murders last week of the twelve Charlie Hebdo journalists by Islamic extremists.

Blasphemy for Me, but Not for Thee
Matthew Continetti, National Review Online

Do liberals actually believe in the right to offend?

Supreme Court hears religious speech case
The Becket Fund

Arizona town’s ordinance allows signs for big politicians, but not small churches.

The 6 Moral Foundations Of Politics
Trevin Wax, The Gospel Coalition

“You can’t legislate morality,” the old saying goes, a statement that purports to be common sense, until you begin to realize you can’t not legislate morality. All legislation is passed within a moral framework of ethical ideals and moral considerations.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, January 14, 2015
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World Marches For Charlie Hebdo Against Violent Intolerance: The Real Atrocity Is Religious Persecution, Not Free Expression
Doug Bandow, Forbes

Religious minorities long have faced murder and prison around the world. Now the freedom not to believe by majorities in Western democracies is under attack.

The Mission Creep of Dignity
Mark Regnerus, Public Discourse

Dignity, rightly understood, has less to do with autonomy or independence than with intrinsic worth and the ability to flourish.

Female genital mutilation now being done in hospitals in Africa
Fredrick Nzwili, Religion News Service

International rights groups, churches, and activists are escalating campaigns against female genital mutilation now that a new practice has emerged in which girls are checking into hospitals to have the procedure.

Religious Bias Issues Debated After Atlanta Mayor’s Dismissal of Fire Chief
Richard Fausset , New York Times

Mayor Kasim Reed’s decision to dismiss his fire chief last week for giving co-workers copies of a Christian self-help book condemning homosexuality is fanning new kinds of legal and political flames in this city, where deeply held religious convictions exist in a kind of defining tension with a reputation for New South tolerance.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, January 13, 2015
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Theological Extremism in a Secular Age
Albert Mohler

The war on terror took on a savage new face yesterday when two gunmen entered the headquarters of a French satirical newspaper known as Charlie Hebdo and opened fire, killing 12 people—10 people connected with the newspaper and two police officers.

America Divided: Positive vs. Natural Law
Shannon Holzer, The Imaginative Conservative

America is divided, with a line that is drawn between two ideological camps. Each of these two camps perceives America radically different from the other.

Did Vatican II Endorse Separation of Church and State?
Joseph G. Trabbic, Crisis Magazine

This year, 2015, marks fifty years since the close of the Second Vatican Council. Yet the “battle” for the Council, the battle for its authentic meaning, which began even before the bishops concluded their deliberations in 1965, continues still today.

Has Our Culture Forgotten the Importance of Being Made in the Image of God?
Hugh Whelchel , Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Our culture has forgotten one of the bedrock ideas of western civilization originating from the Christian concept that men and women are made in the image of God.