Acton Institute Powerblog

Promoting free societies characterized by liberty & religious principles

Bonhoeffer’s Legacy

Earlier this month, we marked the 100th anniversary of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s birth on February 4, in what is now Wroclaw, Poland. In a message before the International Bonhoeffer Conference on February 3, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams said, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a man immersed in a specific cultural heritage, and untroubled by the fact; he was a person of profound and rigorous (and very traditional) personal spirituality; he was someone committed to the ecumenical perspective from very early on in his adult life. Continue Reading...

‘Captialism’ According to the Academy

For a quick overview of the current state of appreciation for economics and capitalism among various ‘academics,’ see the newly inaugurated e-journal Fast Capitalism. It might as well be subtitled: Marxism, Alive and Well. Continue Reading...

‘With God’s help, we can stop global warming’

A few others have addressed this issue in previous posts, but I wanted to jump in with my two cents. Yesterday’s New York Times notes that a group of evangelical leaders have entered the debate over climate change: Despite opposition from some of their colleagues, 86 evangelical Christian leaders have decided to back a major initiative to fight global warming, saying “millions of people could die in this century because of climate change, most of them our poorest global neighbors.” Among signers of the statement, which will be released in Washington on Wednesday, are the presidents of 39 evangelical colleges, leaders of aid groups and churches, like the Salvation Army, and pastors of megachurches, including Rick Warren, author of the best seller “The Purpose-Driven Life.” “For most of us, until recently this has not been treated as a pressing issue or major priority,” the statement said. Continue Reading...

Who Argues that the Environment Doesn’t Matter?

The Chicago Tribune has a story about the Evangelical Climate Initiative (ECI) launched February 8th. (See my initial response here.) Most reports of this story have been somewhat fair. But the Chicago Tribune story takes an unjustified swipe at evangelicals who disagree with the ECI statement. Continue Reading...

A Love/Hate Relationship with Science

One aspect of the evangelical involvement in debates over global warming and climate change that has intriqued me has been what I deem to be a rather large blind spot about the relation of religious conservatives to science. Continue Reading...

The State of American Science and Culture, cont’d.

Following Michael Miller’s recent Acton Commentary, “Why Johnny Can’t Compete with Sanjay”, and the resulting comments, two of America’s best political commentators have also weighed in on the subject. First there’s Charles Krauthammer’s Time article, arguing that America is doing fine, partly as a result of less dependence on government-funded research. Continue Reading...

The Rest of the Story

More from the State of the Union: “…the number of children born to teenage mothers has been falling for a dozen years in a row.” That’s a good thing. But there’s still a marriage crisis, and part of it is related to birth rates among unmarried women: Births to unmarried mothers reached a record high of almost 1.5 million and made up 35.7% of all births in 2004. Continue Reading...

Created Imago Dei

Winners of the 2005 Acton Essay Competition have been announced. The topic for the 15th annual competition: The human person, by virtue of being created imago Dei, is an independent being, individually unique, rational, the subject of moral agency, a co-creator, and inherently social. Continue Reading...

Christ and the Culture Wars

Mark your calendars: The Institute for the Study of Christianity and Culture at Michigan State University is hosting a conference on April 7-8 with the keynote address to be given by Dr. Continue Reading...

Concerns about A La Carte

Some new developments on the idea to move cable television to an a la carte subscription model: Christians and minorities are “concerned.” According to the Christian Science Monitor, FCC chairman Kevin Martin is pressuring cable providers to move away from the tier-based subscription system to “a full thumbs-up/thumbs-down choice of individual channels.” In what’s sure to tweak the sensibilities of the cable industry, Martin threatened that if no such moves were made, “basic indecency and profanity restrictions may be a viable alternative.” In other words, it’s the “Do what I want or there’ll be trouble” method of politicking. Continue Reading...