Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
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Spitting in Rome’s Eye: A Reflection on How Orthodoxy’s Sinfulness Prevents Reunion
Fr. Oliver Herbel, Red River Orthodox

Many Orthodox prefer to dismiss Catholicism and Protestantism as two sides of the same coin, as though Orthodoxy is completely separate from them. If it weren’t for the fact that such an attitude is based on ignorance, it would be audacious in the extreme.

The Elephant in the ‘Christian Persecution’ Room
Raymond Ibrahim , Front Page

Open Doors USA recently released its widely cited 2014 World Watch List—a report that highlights and ranks the 50 worst nations around the globe persecuting Christians.

Capitalism’s Enigma And Its Future
Donald Devine, The Federalist

In How the West Grew Rich, Nathan Rosenberg and L.E. Birdzell traced the beginnings of the legal order underlying capitalism back even further than did Marx, to the 13th Century, or earlier.

Study: Charter Schools Raise Nearby Home Values by Thousands of Dollars
Jason Richwine, National Review Online

One of the most consistent results found in the education literature is that school choice leads to high levels of satisfaction among parents. Researchers normally measure parental satisfaction with simple surveys, but a new paper by Robert Shapiro and Kevin Hassett offers a more rigorous test: Are parents willing to pay a premium to live in an area with more school options?

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
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Unwinding Obamacare
Jame C. Capretta and Yuval Levin, The Weekly Standard

Obamacare is no longer a theoretical proposition. It is now being implemented, if with some notable exceptions for the portions of the law the Obama administration finds particularly inconvenient.

U.S. Congress Urged to Call For Ahmadi Muslim Prisoners’ Release in Saudi Arabia
Imran Jattala, Examiner

An important U.S. Congressional hearing on Plight of Prisoners of Conscience was held by the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission at Capitol Hill today, it is reported.

Facebook page mocking Greek Orthodox monk leads to jail sentence
Reuters

Filippos Loizos found guilty of blasphemy after portraying the late Father Paisios as a pasta-based dish

Recovering The Habits Of Self-Government
David Corbin and Matt Parks, The Federalist

Promoting the culture we so desperately need.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, January 20, 2014
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Obama mocks Catholic nuns for resisting Obamacare contraception mandate
Andrew P. Napolitano, Washington Times

Generally, for almost 230 years, the federal government left us alone to choose freely our religious practices and to worship as we believe. Until now. Today, the free exercise of religion is under attack by the government.

To Combat Inequality, We Need Solidarity
David Lapp, Family Studies

What can a typical person do about poverty and inequality? Striving for solidarity is one starting point.

The World’s War on Christianity
Robert J. Morgan, Huffington Post

In his new book, The Global War on Christians, John L. Allen, Jr., senior Vatican correspondent for the National Catholic Report, called the massive worldwide wave of anti-Christian violence “the most dramatic religion story of the early 21st century.”

The Morality of the National Debt
Jay W. Richards, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Here are three key questions I’ve encountered in thinking and discussing this important issue, and that I asked yesterday as part of my analysis.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, January 17, 2014
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Climate Theology
Steven Hayward, Powerline

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse thought he could discredit Spencer not by arguing science, but by essentially asking Spencer “Are you now or have you ever been a believing Christian?”

Money: An Instrument for Blessing, Not an Indicator of It
John Onwuchekwa, 9Marks Blog

I was in college. I was a young Christian. And I remember walking past my pastor’s luxury car into the church office one day, and was greeted by a sign on the door that read, “We are no longer accepting requests for benevolence due to budgetary constraints.”

The Chief Cause of the Wealth of Nations is Not Material at All, but Knowledge and Skill
Matt Perman, What’s Best Next

This is why helping the poor is about far more than giving fruit baskets at Christmas. Aid, while it has its place and is essential in emergency situations, does not go to the root cause of poverty and that’s why it will never provide the ultimate solution.

9 Things You Should Know About Poverty in America
Joe Carter, The Gospel Coalition

Fifty years ago this month, President Lyndon B. Johnson launched the ‘war on poverty’ an attempt to harness the power of government to help the poor. Here are nine things you should know about poverty in America.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, January 16, 2014
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Ukraine Catholic leader: government threats will not intimidate Church
Catholic World News

The leader of the Ukrainian Catholic Church has vowed that his clergy will not be deterred by the government’s threat to revoke the registration of the Byzantine-rite body.

5.3 billion people face harsh religious freedom restrictions
Brian Pellot, Religion News Service

Global religious hostilities reached a six-year high in 2012 and affected more people than government curbs on religious freedom, according to the Pew Research Center’s latest report on religious restrictions around the world.

A War on Income Inequality Is a Bad Idea
Tyler Castle, Values & Capitalism

President Obama has effectively declared a similar war on income inequality, which he believes “is the defining challenge of our time.” Expect more LBJ-like language about inequality when Obama delivers his own State of the Union address later this month.

Does the Bible Condemn Trade?
R. Mark Isaac, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Even when both economists and theologians acknowledge the “mutual benefit” motivation of free exchange, there is nevertheless a potential and important parting of the ways when the terms of “benefit” are dissected.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
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Christian Courage in Syria
Andrew Doran, National Review Online

The pattern in Iraq is now being replicated in Syria’s shadow war against Christians.

Kalashnikov laments gun deaths in letter to church
The Standard

Kalashnikov wrote that he first went into a church at the age of 91 and was later baptised.

Little Sisters in the Political Madhouse
Pete Spiliakos, First Things

That the case has gone this far illustrates the sickness of the left, the complacence of our popular media culture, and the weakness (partly self-inflicted) of President Obama’s political opponents.

Can Genesis Teach Us Anything about Economics?
Brian Baugus, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

Entrepreneurship is an act of creation. It requires a vision for a better world and the perseverance to make that vision a reality.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
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Reported Christian ‘martyr’ deaths double in 2013: report
Tom Heneghan, Reuters

Reported cases of Christians killed for their faith around the world doubled in 2013 from the year before, with Syria accounting for more than the whole global total in 2012, according to an annual survey.

Is the Pope’s Capitalism Catholic?
Donald Devine, The Federalist

What would you think of capitalism if you were born in a country that had developed a market economy by the dawn of the 20th Century and was ranked among the ten wealthiest nations per capita in the world—but one hundred years later had dropped to seventieth with little of that wealth having trickled down to the poorest in society?

Common Core Education vs. Classical Education: A Thomistic Approach
Sean Fitzpatrick, Crisis Magazine

Whether Common Core Education is contrary to classical education.

Giving to Ease Your Conscience
Nathaniel Torrey, Humane Pursuits

If we are not motivated by love, our giving of alms or aid to those in need cannot be called truly charitable or philanthropic.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, January 13, 2014
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Marco Rubio Presents Anti-Poverty Platform; Discusses ‘Biblical Mandate’

Tyler O’Neil, Christian Post

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) presented new initiatives to combat poverty, urging free market reforms, a shift of federal programs to the states, and a defense of America’s traditional values.

Tocqueville on Keeping Our Countercultural Churches
Peter Augustine Lawler, Ethika Politika

Tocqueville takes the Creator’s view, and not his own, by preferring democratic justice to aristocratic greatness. His tasks are to make democracy as compatible with greatness as possible, and to see greatness in democracy.

Incentives Matter in Fighting Poverty
Jennifer A. Marshall, National Review Online

Why we must change the character of public assistance.

The Disability Double Standard
Joni Eareckson Tada, Wall Street Journal

Instead of helping the disabled live full lives, new laws seek to help them die.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, January 10, 2014
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Bookstore owner priest forgives arsonists in Tripoli, Lebanon
Rayane Abou Jaoude and Antoine Amrieh, The Daily Star

A Greek Orthodox priest whose library was torched in Tripoli over the weekend said he had forgiven the arsonists, though many described the incident as an attempt to incite strife in the troubled city.

Theology, Anthropology, and Economics
Nathaniel Peters, Public Discourse

Every economic system is based upon an implicit vision of the human person. Maciej Zieba’s new book provides an introduction to Catholic social thought that examines the anthropologies of Catholicism, liberal democracy, and the free-market economy.

The Economics of Genesis
Phillip Cary, First Things

Good economics here means more than the proliferation of money and material goods; it means life prevails over death.

Help the Working Poor, but Share the Burden
N. Gregory Mankiw, New York Times

If, as a nation, we decide we want to do more to supplement the incomes of low-wage workers, that’s fine. But let’s do it openly, without artifice, and with broad participation.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, January 9, 2014
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The War on Poverty at 50
Various, National Review Online

Experts reflect on what went right and what went wrong with LBJ’s initiative.

The Islamization of France in 2013
Soeren Kern, Gatestone Institute

Although no official data exist, more than half of the inmates in French prisons are believed to be Muslim, rising to 70% in some urban areas. This disproportionate ratio, coupled with overcrowding and overtaxed guards, makes young Muslims in French prisons easy prey for jihadist recruiters, according to guards, prison directors, ex-inmates, chaplains and crime experts interviewed by Reuters.

If You Really Care About Ending Poverty, Stop Talking About Inequality
W. Bradford Wilcox, The Atlantic

Don’t mind the rich-poor gap. Statistical analysis shows three factors—overall income growth, marriages, and local government spending—matter most for poorer children chasing the American Dream.

The War on Poverty at Fifty: How to Craft Policy to Help America’s Poor
Rachel Sheffield, Public Discourse

Government may be able to provide material assistance, but it has failed to address the deeper causes of poverty. Worse, it has discouraged the most important defenses against poverty in America—work and marriage.