Does the Vatican think water should be ‘free’?

Not surprisingly, the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace (PCJP)’s latest document on water has garnered scant media attention. Why, after all, would journalists, already notorious for their professional Attention Deficit Disorder and dislike of abstract disputation, report on something named “Water: An Essential Element of Life,” especially when it is nothing more than an update of a document originally released in 2003, and then updated in 2006 and 2009, with the exact same titles? Continue Reading...

The Future of Fusionism

As promised in the context of yesterday’s discussion here and at First Thoughts, my piece on the future of fusionism is up over at the Comment site, “Small is Beautiful (Except When it Isn’t.)” I take my point of departure in the “crunchy” or “communitarian” conservatism of Rod Dreher, recently profiled by the NYT’s David Brooks. Continue Reading...

Cheerleader-in-Chief

I was asked for my initial reaction to President Obama’s State of the Union speech, and the handsomely redesigned Think Christian posted them last night, “Jobs, Steve Jobs, and the State of the Union.” As I point out, the president’s protectionist posturing is belied by the realities experienced by companies like Apple. Continue Reading...

I, iPhone

The latest episode of This American Life follows the story of Mike Daisey and his investigation into the origins of Apple products, especially the iPhone which is “Made in China.” What might the iPhone say if it could speak for itself? Continue Reading...

Tony Blair, Actonite?

Greetings from London, which is only partially shut down today due to a public sector strike over the British government’s not-so-temporary austerity plan. The worst fears of extremely long delays at the airports and of possible violence have yet to materialize and let’s hope they never do. Continue Reading...

A Person’s a Person, No Matter How Far

Glenn Barkan, retired dean of Aquinas College’s School of Arts and Sciences here in Grand Rapids, had a piece worth reading in the local paper over the weekend related the current trend (fad?) toward buying local. Continue Reading...

Vatican’s Call for Central World Bank: What the Left Misses

Samuel Gregg is quoted in today’s New York Times story about the Vatican note calling for a central world bank — he gives the final word on the document. The “politically liberal Catholics” quoted before him reveal that they have missed a crucial distinction in the document produced by the Pontifical Council for Peace and Justice. Continue Reading...

Trade with China, or Blockade Their Ports?

Congress insults our intelligence when it tells us that Chinese currency games are to blame for our trade deficit with that country and unemployment in our own. Legislators might as well propose a fleet of men-o’-war to navigate the globe and collect all its gold: economics is not a zero-sum game. Continue Reading...