Latest Posts

Putnam on Diversity

Harvard sociologist Robert Putnam provoked a cottage industry of commentary and debate on the question of “social capital” when he published his book, Bowling Alone, a few years ago. Now he’s at it again with an intriguing study concerning the effects of diversity on civic life. Continue Reading...

Baxter, How to Do Good to Many, Part 1

Readings in Social Ethics: Richard Baxter, How to Do Good to Many (London, 1682; repr. 1830), part 1 of 3. References below are to page numbers. On Good Works: A condemnation of selfishness: “It is a sign he is a branch cut off and withered who careth little for any but himself” (292). Continue Reading...

‘A Power Out Of Ourselves’

Enthusiastic atheists are on the offensive in an effort to tear down private faith, now that religion has increasingly lost influence in the public square. Richard Dawkins, author of “The God Delusion”, and Christopher Hitchens’s, “God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything” have sold hundreds of thousands of copies. Continue Reading...

The Transfiguration of Our Lord

Mt. Tabor In much of the Christian world today, the great feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord is commemorated (Matt. 17:1-9). In the Eastern Church, as Fr. Seraphim Rose observed, it is customary to “offer fruits to be blessed at this feast; and this offering of thanksgiving to God contains a spiritual sign, too. Continue Reading...

Lord Acton on Literature

Picking up on the themes of the importance of narrative from recent weeks, I pass along this worthy saying of Lord Acton: “Government rules the present. Literature rules the future.” Continue Reading...

Debunking the ‘Eat Local’ Myth

An op-ed in today’s NYT by James E. McWilliams, “Food That Travels Well,” articulates some of the suspicions I’ve had about the whole “eat local” phenomenon. It seems to me that duplicating the kind of infrastructure necessary to sustain a great variety of food production every hundred miles or so is grossly inefficient. Continue Reading...

“We Doubt, We’re Out, Get Used to It”

Hey everybody, Richard Dawkins is selling T-shirts! Get ’em while they’re hot! One of my favorite bloggers, Allahpundit (who just happens to be an athiest himself), calls this “…a new stage in the transformation of ‘new atheism’ from rational argument to aggrieved identity group,” and has this to say about the t-shirts themselves Some of our commenters call this sort of thing evangelical atheism but a moron with a scarlet “A” on his chest really isn’t trying to convert you. Continue Reading...

‘I Am Not Afraid of Death’

Alexander Solzhenitsyn Der Spiegel has published a far ranging interview with Alexander Solzhenitsyn in which the great writer “discusses Russia’s turbulent history, Putin’s version of democracy and his attitude to life and death.” Continue Reading...