Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Puritans Were Like ISIS?
Mark Tooley, Juicy Ecumenism

This week Yale Divinity School’s Miroslav Volf, in an interview with Religion News Service’s Jonathan Merritt, seems to compare America’s founders with ISIS.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby left embarrassed by Canterbury Cathedral living wage blunder
Chris Pragnell, Kent Online

The Archbishop of Canterbury has admitted “embarrassment” over revelations that Canterbury Cathedral is offering jobs paying barely over the minimum wage. The Most Reverend Justin Welby waded into political debate last week by demanding a living wage for all workers of at least £7.85 per hour.

More Money Does Not Equal Better Public Schools
A. Barton Hinkle, Reason

The correlation between school spending and student achievement is far weaker than commonly thought.

Economic Freedom Is Not Enough for Human Flourishing
Elise Amyx, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Economic freedom is only one component of human flourishing. We should think about it as a prerequisite, a necessary foundation to society that makes human flourishing possible. We need to ask ourselves, once we have economic freedom, what do we do with it?

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, February 23, 2015

Families Armed With Books Repel The Effects Of Poverty
Allison Kieselowsky, The Federalist

Families that read together build strong bonds and ward off poverty. Here’s what you can do to encourage love for books in your community.

The Business of Spiritual Man
Hunter Baker, Touchstone

The role of Christianity in Peter Drucker’s early work.

A florist loses religious freedom, and much more
Denny Burk, CNN

Stutzman is the Washington florist who has been sued for living out her Christian beliefs. In 2013, a long-time friend and customer came to her flower shop and asked her to provide flowers for his gay wedding. Stutzman had known this man and had done business with him for about nine years. Nevertheless, she told him that she could not participate in his wedding “because of my relationship with Jesus.”

Nit-Picking “Saint” Adam Smith
Stephen Masty, The Imaginative Conservative

How often can writers pretend to discover some well-known thing for “the first time ever?” With poor Adam Smith it has happened again, but commercial promotion inadvertently raises an important matter that only begins with the great First Economist’s religion or lack thereof.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, February 20, 2015

Italian Cardinal Promises “War on Capitalism”
John Zmirak, The Stream

Dogmatic, leftist distortions of Catholic Social Teaching ignore reason and history.

‘Relationship with Jesus’ doesn’t justify florist’s refusal to serve gay couple, judge rules
Sarah Kaplan, Washington Post

A Washington state florist who refused to provide flower arrangements for a gay wedding “because of [her] relationship with Jesus” violated the state’s anti-discrimination and consumer protection laws, a judge ruled Wednesday.

(Still) more on “Catholicism v. Libertarianism”
Rick Garnett, Mirror of Justice

I think that, for too many Catholics, “libertarian” is becoming little more than an epithet that one attaches to particular policy proposals or stances one does not support, whether or not those proposals or stances actually depend on or reflect “libertarian” premises.

Evangelicals For Biblical Immigration and Cultural Flourishing
Kelly Monroe Kullberg , Christian Post

Almost all evangelicals support lawful, reasonable immigration. What they oppose is lawlessness and a disregard for the rights of citizens.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, February 19, 2015

Would Today’s Proverbs 31 Woman Do Multi-Level Marketing?
Hannah Anderson, Christianity Today

How companies appeal to family values and female empowerment.

13 Charts Measuring Economic Freedom Around the Globe
Thaleigha Rampersad, The Daily Signal

The Daily Signal pulled together 13 charts from this year’s Index of Economic Freedom to reveal some of the most interesting facts and figures.

Nutella Founder Dies, Said Secret of Success Was Our Lady of Lourdes
Zelda Caldwell, Aleteia

Devout Catholic took employees to visit site of Marian apparitions.

God, America, and Rights: How Chris Cuomo Gets Rights Wrong
Carson Holloway, Public Discourse

CNN anchor Chris Cuomo recently argued that rights are a simply matter of “collective agreement and compromise.” His remarks are evidence of a desire on the part of America’s intellectual and cultural elite to divorce America from its traditional political identity and from the notion that politics has any connection to God.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Pope Francis: The blood of murdered Copts a “witness that cries out”
Vatican Radio

Pope Francis on Monday denounced the murder of 21 Coptic Christians by ISIL militants in Libya. The Islamist terrorist organization released a video of the killings on Sunday.

Frank Wolf Calls for Safe Haven for Mideast Christians
Timothy C. Morgan and Ruth Moon, Christianity Today

Former congressman offers six-point plan. But killing continues as ISIL-linked terrorists behead 21 Christians in Libya.

What ISIS Really Wants
Graeme Wood, The Atlantic

The Islamic State is no mere collection of psychopaths. It is a religious group with carefully considered beliefs, among them that it is a key agent of the coming apocalypse. Here’s what that means for its strategy—and for how to stop it.

These Letters Offer a Window into George Washington’s Views on Religious Liberty
Daniel Dreisbach , Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

We live in a time when religious liberty is more threatened than at any time in living memory. While courts and commentators turn frequently to Thomas Jefferson and James Madison for insights on religious liberty and the constitutional role of religion in public life, largely ignored is the counsel of our first president, George Washington.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Turkey’s mosque-building diplomacy
Thomas Seibert, Al Monitor

Turkey is running a state-sponsored program to build mosques in countries from Kazakhstan to Cuba, which some say prevents more radical groups to gain power and is widening Turkey’s global influence.

How the Welfare State Penalizes Parents Who Marry
Robert Rector, The Daily Signal

Fifty-one years ago, President Lyndon B. Johnson launched the War on Poverty. Since then, taxpayers have spent more than $22 trillion fighting Johnson’s war, three times the cost of all military wars in U.S. history.

The myth that there are more black men in prison than in college, debunked in one chart
Jenée Desmond-Harris, Vox

The statistic almost instantly became a talking point. It was often deployed by those who wanted to explain just how dire racial disparities in the United States were, and how desperately the situation facing black men needed attention and intervention.

Response to a question on vocation discernment
James Chastek, Just Thomism

One response to this confusion is the idea of vocation discernment. This can mean more than one thing, but in practice it seems to involve praying for a special revelation about God’s plan for your life.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, February 16, 2015

A Trap Set for Catholic Conservatives
Austin Ruse, Crisis Magazine

Influential Catholics—many of them supporters of Barack Obama—are advancing a proposition that may have the result of sullying the reputations of Catholic conservatives and those Catholics arguing for a robust market economy.

Challenges Facing Low-Income Individuals and Families in Today’s Economy
W. Bradford Wilcox, Family Studies

Lower-income Americans are less likely to enjoy the advantages linked with being part of a stable, married family.

GOP congressman introduces bill to stop feds from watching porn on taxpayer’s dime
Sarah Westwood, Washington Examiner

The Eliminating Pornography from Agencies Act aptly shares its initials with the government agency that drew attention to the problem of staff watching pornographic videos at work, the Environmental Protection Agency.

Bill to let college clubs pick leaders’ religion fails
Joey Bunch, Denver Post

A bill in the Colorado legislature that would have allowed religious clubs on the state’s college campuses to set rules on faith for its leaders died on a party-line vote in a House committee Monday.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, February 13, 2015

Jails Have Become Warehouses for the Poor, Ill and Addicted, a Report Says
Timothy Williams, New York Times

Jails across the country have become vast warehouses made up primarily of people too poor to post bail or too ill with mental health or drug problems to adequately care for themselves, according to a report issued Wednesday.

European Baptists Appeal to Russian, Ukrainian Baptists
Paul Hobson, Ethics Daily

The European Baptist Federation (EBF) has challenged Russian and Ukrainian Baptist leaders to issue a joint statement calling for peace while acknowledging their differences.

Vatican’s economic reform on track despite some resistance
Carol Glatz, Catholic News Service

As fresh economic reforms begin to take hold throughout the Vatican, the Council for the Economy has faced some resistance from larger offices that had been used to having greater autonomy, said a cardinal member of the council.

An Faq With Robert P. George On The Moral Purposes Of Law And Governement
Justin Taylor, The Gospel Coalition

Several years ago First Things published an essay entitled “Law and Moral Purpose” by Robert P. George, Princeton University’s McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, February 12, 2015

Grandfather’s body could be exhumed after relatives of Muslim buried alongside complain he was an unbeliever
Gregory Walton, The Telegraph

Local authority in Leicestershire tells the family of Shadrack Smith, 89, he might be moved to another plot after complaints from a Muslim family.

Study Claims Oil Divestiture May Hurt College Endowments
John Schwartz, New York Times

Universities that decide to shed their investments in fossil fuel stocks could hurt the value of their endowments, according to a new report.

American labor-union strikes are almost completely extinct
Matt Phillips, Quartz

In 2014, there were only 11 strikes or lockouts in the US involving more than 1,000 workers. That was down from 15 the previous year, and tied for the second-lowest total on record, according to just-released numbers from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Are Christ and Christianity Coercive? A Christian Economist’s Perspective
Anne Bradley, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

While Christianity is not coercive in that Christ tells us to give of our wealth others without cause, many shy away from Christianity because the choice between Christ and hell seems manipulative at best and malicious at worst.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Pope Francis: A Christian who does not protect creation ‘does not care about the work of God’
David Gibson, Religion News Service

If you are a Christian, protecting the environment is part of your identity, not an ideological option, Pope Francis said Monday

Bakers Who Declined Service to Same-Sex Couple Found to Violate Anti-Discrimination Law
Kelsey Harkness, The Daily Signal

The owners of an Oregon bakery who declined to make a cake for a same-sex couple’s wedding celebration were found guilty last week of violating the state’s anti-discrimination law.

Prison for children ‘may increase risk’ they will commit sex offences

Imprisoning young offenders may make it more likely that they will commit sex offences, according to a study set up by the Howard League for Penal Reform.

Christian Anti-Semitism and the Rise of the Modern State
Donald Devine, Library of Law and Liberty

It takes one cool academic to sort through the morass of relationships between Christians and Jews over time. Sara Lipton, historian at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, might just be up to the job. Her book Dark Mirror: The Medieval Origins of Anti-Jewish Iconography looks at all surviving pictorial representations of Jews across European history to evaluate at least elite views of this relationship.