Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
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Global religious hot spots get their own U.S. envoy
Lauren Markoe, Religion News Service

As the Islamic State tears across Iraq and Syria this summer, sending religious minorities fleeing for their lives, Congress created a new job at the State Department — one the president needs to fill immediately, say those who pushed for the position.

Heroic Sisters
Tom Hoopes, Aleteia

Some very gutsy religious who are, by the way, faithful to Church teaching.

12 Things You Need To Know About Government Unions
Stan Greer, The Federalist

The recent Supreme Court decision in Harris v. Quinn has shifted forced unionism across the country.

Twenty-One Words That Describe Christian Leadership
Glenn Brooke, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

There may be no better summary of the characteristics of leaders than this, from the final instructions Paul gives at the end of 1 Corinthians.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, August 25, 2014
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New HHS Rules Still Problematic for Religious Liberty
Barrett Duke and Andrew T. Walker, ERLC

When a law is revised eight times, it’s worth asking whether or not it should ever have been enacted in the first place.

The Korean Martyrs and the Power of Lay Witness
Marge Fenelon, Aleteia

The throngs who greeted Pope Francis in Korea are testimony to the power of the laity to spread the Faith.

Study: A fourth of public school spending goes to salaries and benefits of nonteachers
James Pethokoukis, AEI Ideas

A new Thomas B. Fordham Institute study finds that the number of non-teaching staff in the United States has grown by 130% since 1970. These three millions employers now account for half of the public school workforce with their salaries and benefits absorbing one-quarter of current education spending.

Emotional Storms Are No Response for Disasters
Amity Shlaes, National Review

A new study shows that government aid and World Bank projects are not enough to spur lasting recovery.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, August 22, 2014
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The Moral Divide Between Progressives and Traditionalists
James Kalb, Crisis Magazine

A recent account of moral sentiments, proposed by social psychologist Jonathan Haidt in his book, The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion (Pantheon, 2012), has attracted attention for its explanation of the difference between progressives and traditionalists.

MaterCare: One Doctor’s Courageous but Lonely Battle to Reduce Maternal Mortality
Susan E. Wills, Aleteia

Dr. Robert Walley is reducing maternal deaths in sub-Saharan Africa in ways that respect the dignity and rights of women.

Why It’s Wrong for Christians to Mistreat Creation
Justin Holcomb, Christanity.com

One reason Christians have been particularly weak in dealing with ecological issues and the deterioration of the natural environment is a misunderstanding of what it means to “have dominion” over creation.

Unschooling: the Future of Education?
Gracy Olmstead, The American Conservative

These questions of methodology are vitally important, as the next generation faces a daunting educational and career hurdle. Parents and children may need to bend, or even break, the customary ideals and stereotypes associated with a “good” education in order to succeed.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, August 21, 2014
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Who Will Stand Up for the Christians?
Ronald S. Lauder, New York Times

Why is the world silent while Christians are being slaughtered in the Middle East and Africa?

When Government Preschool Comes To Town
Ashley Bateman, The Federalist

Thousands of preschoolers in Alabama will go back to school this year in a variety of settings: faith-based, federally-funded, full-time, part-time, or private. But the state’s diverse preschool market is dwindling, and if legislators continue to support bigger federally funded programs, those choices will dry up.

How teen moms affect the economy, decades later
Danielle Kurtzleben, Vox

Just a couple extra years and a diploma for a teen mom might well change that woman’s life. But it could also mean a substantially bigger paycheck for her child, nearly 30 years down the road.

Married parents vs cohabiting parents
Nicole M. King, Mercatornet

A new study by the National Center for Health Statistics reveals “a baby frenzy happening among unmarried couples who live together.” According to the report, 58% of all unmarried births now occur to cohabiting couples, compared to 41% in 2002.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
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Archbishop of Mosul: “I have lost my Diocese to Islam – You in the West will also become the victims of Muslims”
Archbishop Amel Nona, Rorate Caeli

Our sufferings today are the prelude of those you, Europeans and Western Christians, will also suffer in the near future. I lost my diocese. The physical setting of my apostolate has been occupied by Islamic radicals who want us converted or dead. But my community is still alive.

High-Tech Schools With Low-Tech Problems
Allison Kieselowsky, The Federalist

What this mom found after enrolling her child in an online public school.

A Bipartisan Consensus on How to Fight Poverty?
Arnold Kling, The American

In an otherwise bitterly partisan political environment, two recent policy proposals from both sides of the aisle share core ideas for reforming anti-poverty programs.

Natural Law, Natural Rights, and Private Property
Edward Feser, Library of Law and Liberty

In this essay I present a sketch of a classical natural law approach to natural rights and private property. The approach is “classical” insofar as it is grounded in metaphysical assumptions of the sort defended by ancient and medieval philosophers like Plato, Aristotle, and Aquinas.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
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A Business Catechism
Father John Flynn, LC, Zenit

How to reconcile ethical principles with the exigencies of running a business has long been a cause for debate. A new book looks at this from the perspective of the social teaching of the Catholic Church.

“Men were created to employ themselves”: Calvin on Gen. 2.15
Aaron Denlinger, Reformation21

We tend towards one of two extremes in our attitudes towards work–either we make too little of it, or we make too much of it. We make too little of work when we regard it with contempt, when we treat it as an evil–albeit a necessary one since it supplies the financial resources necessary to pursue the things we actually value (relationships, possessions, status, leisure, etc.).

“The Giver” and the Gift That Keeps on Taking
Anthony Sacramone, Intercollegiate Review

“When people have the freedom to choose, they choose wrong. Every single time.” So says the Chief Elder, a firm believer in the Reformed doctrine of total depravity, apparently.

The Curse of Calling and Myth of Creativity
Grady Powell, Fare Forward

The word “calling” has the power to elicit eyerolls and sighs – a cliché of the worst kind. Though it stirs up deep desires to commit to a higher purpose and raises hopes for divine guidance, it also awakens the profound confusion within our culture and the church around personal identity and the meaning of a good life.

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, August 18, 2014
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Four Ways Christians Can Transform Behavior in the Online Marketplace
Andrew Spencer, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

As Christians called to be holy in all areas of life, including the marketplace, how do we communicate in a godly manner when the marketplace goes digital?

Who Is Speaking For The Persecuted Christians In Iraq?
Rob Schwarzwalder, The Federalist

All persecution is evil, whether it is of Uighur Muslims in northwestern China or of Yazidi on a barren hilltop in Kurdistan. Yet the U.S. mainstream media seems to be downplaying, if not ignoring, the intense persecution of Christian Iraqis by the self-proclaimed “Islamic State of Iraq and Syria” (ISIS), the pretentious self-appellation of a group of Islamist murderers.

A Better Way Up From Poverty
Paul Ryan, Wall Street Journal

I’ve learned I was wrong to talk about ‘makers and takers.’ We have to do more to unwind the cycle of dependency on government.

Journey to Baby Gammy: How We Justify a Market in Children
Rickard Newman, Public Discourse

Materialism, relativism, and consequentialism are at the heart of the arguments in favor of third-party reproduction.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, August 15, 2014
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Is the Navy Removing Bibles from Hotel Rooms?
Leslie Ford, The Daily Signal

A new directive from the Navy has raised concerns about the potential removal of Bibles from Navy lodge rooms and guest quarters, according to Fox News. These lodges are hotels located on naval bases for members of the Navy, usually used when they receive new permanent change of station orders.

Vatican Calls on Muslim Leaders to Condemn Crimes Against Iraq Minorities.
Jesus Colina, Aleteia

Using unprecedented language, the Vatican takes a qualitative leap in relations with Islam.

From 30,000 Feet, Pope Francis Reaches Out to Beijing
Calum MacLeod, USA Today

The pontiff’s flight over China and his corresponding telegram to President Xi Jinping carry historic significance.

Homeschooling Basics – 4 Popular Approaches
Philip Meade

There are, of course, more than four and I will be painting in broad strokes here. But for the most part, homeschooling typically follows one of these approaches.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, August 14, 2014
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How God Shows Up in a Gig Economy
Bethany Jenkins, The Gospel Coalition

Evan Koons is a writer, producer, actor, creative consultant, and inhabiter—a role that he has fulfilling for more than 34 years. He is one of the main creative voices behind For the Life of the World: Letters to Exiles, in which he also stars.

11 Objections On Giving To The Poor Answered By Jonathan Edwards
Matt Perman, What’s Best Next

One of the best sermons of all time is Jonathan Edwards’s “The Duty of Christian Charity: Explained and Defended.” In it, he argues that helping the poor is one of the highest duties of the Christian.

The Debate over “Common Core”
Russell Shaw, Aleteia

The problem with American education has less to do with what goes on in the classroom than with what goes on in the culture.

Federal court rules abortion pill mandate violates La. College’s religious freedom
Alliance Defending Freedom

Amidst a flurry of activity this month in Alliance Defending Freedom lawsuits against President Obama’s abortion pill mandate, the administration’s record in cases litigated so far stands at 10 losses and only four wins.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
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Christian Group Demands to See Secret IRS Deal With Atheists
Kelsey Harkness, The Daily Signal

The Faith and Freedom Coalition today demanded release of a secret legal agreement between the IRS and an atheist group about censoring the content of sermons and other messages heard in houses of worship by challenging their tax-exempt status.

The Pleasures of Prudence: How Over-Regulation Hurts Doctors, Teachers, and All Workers
Rachel Lu, Public Discourse

Workers must have the freedom to develop real expertise and to exercise this rational mastery in pursuit of good ends. Only in the pleasures of prudence can we truly realize those excellences of which human beings are capable.

The US budget deficit continues to shrivel
James Pethokoukis, AEI Ideas

A huge economic story that seems unable to get through the filter.

Recovering The Catholic Doctrine Of Private Property
W. Bradford Littlejohn, The Calvinist International

Put briefly and bluntly, I would say that unless conservatism can exorcise the spectre of its “inviolable individual rights” approach to property, it has little hope of surviving as any kind of cultural bulwark against liberalism.