Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Swine flu and you (NYT)
Winning in Afghanistan (John McCain)
NYC Atheists: You can be good without God (Christian Post)
Minn. U apologizes for mascot mocking prayer (Christian Post)
Josh Hamilton, sin, and non-hypocrisy (Christianity Today)
Splitting babies (Christianity Today)
Spong: no more debates on homosexuality (Christian Post)
Racial rift among Methodists heals (Christian Post)
UN rules would mean global blasphemy law (Christian Post)
Sec. Clinton opposes UN blasphemy law (Christian Post)
Islamic countries push blasphemy law (CS Monitor)
Obama admin should oppose blasphemy law (Findlaw)
Transcripts of defeat (NY Times)
More schools, not troops (NY Times)
Pro-gay classroom ban at Calvin Coll. (Christianity Today)
Nine Inch Nails guitarist a good neighbor? (LA Times)
Obamacare and American morality (WSJ)
Fixing the financial system (WSJ)
Conservatives largest of three groups (Gallup)
Fatal conceit (NYT)
Public option with states’ opt-out? (NYT)
Is Obamacare pro-life? (WSJ)
Fox News news? (WSJ)
Phoenix 14th safest (AZ Republic)
300 protest day-care license hike (AZ Republic)
GPS for kids? (Sun-Times)
Halloween for Obamacare propaganda? (AlaskaBarackObama)
First-time fraudsters (WSJ)
Gibbs denies Obamacare unconstitutional (CNS News)
Tax dollars shouldn’t fund abortion (WSJ)
Andre Agassi and Crystal Meth (USA Today)
Government steps into executive pay (Wash Post)
Pay czar Kenneth Feinberg (Politico)
Execs flee ahead of pay cuts (Wash Post)
Behind the Fox News White House war (NYT)
Bank charging fees for paying off credit cards (USA Today)
Religious leader burning non KJV Bibles (Fox News)
The website for the group
Somali women whipped for wearing bras (Fox News)
UCLA study: Internet altering our brains (Live Science)
Unemployment numbers (Bureau of Labor)
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Note: Before reading the following arguments, please understand that they are not what I believe. On Wednesdays, I deliberately argue for wrong ideas, challenging my listeners to call and defend the obvious right answer, which is usually far harder than one would expect. This is a summary of what Wacky Andrew will be arguing, not a representation of what real Andrew believes.
~The economy depends on people spending money, but thrifty people don’t spend.
~Thrifty is just a nice way of saying miserly and stingy.
~Being careful with your money makes you more aware of your money than you should be. Trying never to waste any fixates you on it all the time.
~Having gotten a great deal, you then worry about protecting the thing too much because you know you can’t replace it at that price.
~You sneer at the price gouger charging too much, but the thrifty person is just the price gouger on the other side of the transaction.
~Thrifty people develop a great sense of pride for this trait, thinking it makes them better people.
~Thrifty people often judge others who spend money more easily as being inferior and may even let their foolishness justify not helping them in their time of need.
~Philosophically, buying used things still presupposes lots of other people foolishly buying new things. This is economically parasitic.
~Even when you do spend money, you feel guilty about it.
~You can spend so much time trying to maximize and leverage your spending that you wind up investing far more of your life into things than even the profligate spender might.
~One of the common reasons for being thrifty is to maximize material pleasure with limited resources. This is every bit as much greed as someone who throws his money around. It’s just greed with a hefty dose of rationality added to it.
~Drama has historically been an industry full of immorality, both shown and in the people who produced it. This is why early Christian converts were told to leave their acting professions.
~The film industry, in particular, is so vulgar that no Christian should be associated with it.
~Is it acceptable to God to utter pretend profanity, pretend immorality, or pretend blasphemy?
~Every good plot needs a villain. Should Christians practice being villains so well that they can’t be discerned from them?
~Method acting is the idea that you don’t act like you’re angry, you become angry. Does this seem like an excellent character habit?
~We aren’t supposed to be partners with non-believers in our endeavors.
~The Greek word Hupokrites (an actor) and Latin hypocrita (a stage actor) derive our word hypocrite, which Jesus did not use to praise the Pharisees who “put on a good show.”
~Someone who is good at acting is good at misrepresenting who he really is.
~How can you do those things on the screen and then tell your children to not do them? There are a lot of movies you would act in that would not be suitable for your own children to watch. How can that be correct: doing a job your children aren’t allowed to observe.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Self-Evaluation on the Sacred Pathways
Rate yourself on each of these ten pathways 1-5. Have your spouse do the same thing. Then look at your church and see how it does or does not fit your rankings, recognizing that no church is going to fit all of these and that some of them are fairly hard for any church service to fit very well.
1 = Run away! Run away! This is soooo not me!
2 = I don’t lean toward, nor away. It’s just sort of there
3 = Hmmm…yep, I see this fitting me a bit.
4 = Well, sure..if I could figure out how to do it.
5 = Yes! That’s me in a nutshell!
_______ Naturalist Pathway
--------------Loving God out of doors
_______ Sensate Pathway
--------------Loving God with the senses, art, beauty
_______ Traditionalist Pathway
--------------Loving God through ritual and symbol
_______ Ascetics Pathway
--------------Loving God in solitude and simplicity
_______ Activist Pathway
--------------Loving God through confrontation, fixing society
_______ Caregivers Pathway
--------------Loving God by serving others, the needy
_______ Enthusiasts Pathway
--------------Loving God with mystery and celebration
_______ Contemplatives Pathway
--------------Loving God through adoration and time
_______ Intellectuals Pathway
--------------Loving God with the mind, ideas, thinking
_______ Relationships Pathway
--------------Loving God with social connections, friendships
~Does God reward and punish people in this life?
~What does it mean to be a missional church in America?
~Should Christians with Muslims fast during Ramadan?
Sacred Pathways (Gary Thomas)
Fasting during Ramadan (Christianity Today)
Monday, October 26, 2009
68. Justice and Equality
69. ESBI and Education
70. Cash-Flow model
Tim Kimmel Interview
Is Transformers 2 racist?
Natural and acquired moral intuitions
Are metal-detector users creepy?
What is government good for?
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Here is my suggestion. You are of course encouraged to read all the following Scriptures. But for starters, just read the book of Luke in as close to one sitting as you can, paying special attention to all the references to money and asking how these stories make sense in light of Jesus's teachings about money.
Bible References: Prov 11:6, Matt 4:18-22, Matt 5:1-12, Matt 5:40-48, Matt 6:1-4, Matt 6:19-34, Matt 8:18-20, Matt 19:16-30, Matt 21:12-46, Matt 24:32-51, Matt 25:1-46, Matt 26:6-13, Mark 4:1-25, Mark 10:17-31, Mark 11:12-26, Mark 14:3-9, Luke 6:20-49, Luke 7:36-50, Luke 8:4-15, Luke 9:57-58, Luke 12:1-59, Luke 13:1-9, Luke 14:7-15, Luke 14:25-35, Luke 15:1-32, Luke 16:1-31, Luke 18:18-30, Luke 19:1-27, John 12:1-8, Acts 2:41-47, Acts 3:1-10, Acts 4:32-37, Acts 5:1-12, Rom 1:26-32, Rom 12:4-9, 1 Cor 13:1-3, 2 Cor 8:1-24, 2 Cor 9:1-15, Gal 2:1-10, Gal 6:1-10, Eph 2:4-10, Eph 3:8, Eph 4:17-20, Eph 5:1-6, Phil 3:7-11, Phil 4:5-9, Phil 4:13-20, Cols 1:25-29, Col 2:1-3, Col 3:1-7, 1 Tim 3:1-10, 1 Tim 6:1-10, 2 Tim 3:1-5, Heb 13:1-8, James 1:9-10, James 1:27, James 2:1-13, James 5:1-6, Titus 1:5-11, 2 Peter 2:1-3, 2 Peter 2:12-16, 1 John 2:8-11, 1 John 3:16-19, 1 John 4:19-20
Monday, October 19, 2009
Flag reverence and acquired moral intuitions
Are metal-detector users creepy?
Quitting a book
Is racism a choice? What is government good for?
Thursday, October 15, 2009
What happened to global warming? (BBC News)
Marge Simpson on Playboy? (CBS News)
Cover girl Marge? (LA Times)
Is a BSA utensil a weapon? (NYT)
What I heard in Honduras (Jim DeMint)
Paying the health tax in Massachusetts (WSJ)
Think about the grandkids (NYT)
Heckuva job, Barack (NYT)
George Shultz on the drug war (WSJ)
The ugly premise of settlement opponents (WSJ)
Taking the national debt seriously (WSJ)
Reputation vs lawsuits (Star-Ledger)
Small banks failing, straining FDIC (NYT)
The stressed German model (WSJ)
Tax credits for pets? (ABC News)
Obama-chant superintendant defends song (Fox News)
Limbaugh dropped from Rams offer (ABC News)
The new McCarthyism on Rush (Hugh Hewitt)
Rush lynch mob (Telegraph)
Jesse and Al vs Rush (USA Today)
Health insurance at the DMV? (CNS News)
Fake lottery winner causes riot (CNS News)
La. interracial couple denied marriage license (CNS News)
Breaking the last racial taboo (Politico)
Denver releases dangerous criminals (Denver Post)
UNH student can’t fly flag (Union Leader)
Universal coverage still elusive (LA Times)
Maurice Sendak tells parents to go to hell (Mommy Files)
White House vs Fox News (Fox News)
Anita Dunn: Fox not news (Huff Post)
DNA upon arrest? (NY Post)
Pastor drops flock for Glock (Wash Post)
M4 jams on US troops during firefight (Wash Post)
Coverage won’t start til 2013 (USA Today)
Two US economists win Nobels (LA Times)
Shop gives free bridal gowns to unemployed (Sun-Sentinel)
Obama’s new pastor thinks Islam violent (London Times)
Are the rich paying their fair share? (LA Times)
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Okay, today is going to be different from any other Wacky Wednesday. I got to thinking about taxes, and I realized that there were a lot of issues here I wanted to discuss. However, it just didn’t seem to break down into the two big issues the way we would normally do a Wacky Wednesday. Instead, there are actually several big areas worth talking about today:
~Payroll taxes (Social Security/Medicare)
Since I am opposed in principle to all of these (in varying degrees) as they currently exist, I will actually be articulating the arguments against the status quo. The challenge is to see whether you can even articulate the defense of these practices as they currently exist. As we complete one subject, we’ll move on to the next one, which is going to be a very different structure from our normal practice on Wednesday.
Income Tax (Wikipedia)
Property Tax (Wikipedia)
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Bible References: Deut 25:3, Psalm 139:7-8, Isaiah 6:1-6, Daniel 3, Mal 3:1-4, Matt 5:23-26, Matt 8:10-13, Matt 10:28, Matt 12:39-40, Matt 13:42, Matt 13:50, Matt 18:23-35, Matt 18:1-11, Matt 22:13, Matt 25:24-30, Matt 25:31-46, Matt 27:45-46, Mark 9:43-48, Luke 3:16, Luke 12:43-48 , Luke 12:58-59 , Luke 13:22-30, Luke 16:19-31, Acts 2:29-31, Rom 1:24-26, Rom 10:6-7, 1 Cor 3:11-15, Eph 4:7-9, Phil 2:9-11, 2 Thess 1:6-10, Heb 12:14, 23, 29, 2 Peter 2:1-22, Jude 6-13, Rev 14:9-12, Rev 16:10-12, Rev 21:8
Importance of Hell (Tim Keller)
Purgatory (Catholic Encyclopedia)
Hell (Catholic Encyclopedia)
Hell in Christian Beliefs (Wikipedia)
Heaven and Hell According to the Bible (Eastern Orthodox)
Monday, October 12, 2009
63. Scarcity and Abundance
64. Value Theory of Wealth
65. Technology and Wealth
In order to facilitate discussion amongst those of you either taking the class or wanting to discuss these ideas in more depth, I will be posting each of the criteria separately without much (if any) actual explanation simply so you can have your discussions on those particular ideas.
~Return to the Hundred Acre Wood and Remakes
~Talking about money with our kids.
~Are metal-detector users creepy?
~Marge Simpson on Playboy cover
~Quitting a book
~Is racism a choice?
~What is government good for?
Thursday, October 8, 2009
USSC and the Mojave Cross (Christianity Today)
Mojave Cross case (AP)
Constitution and the cross (NY Times)
Polanski raped a child: a primer (Newsweek)
Mohler on Polanski (Albert Mohler)
Save the children (Slate)
Child rape and filmmaker values (Dennis Prager)
Polanski an odd priority for LA DA (LA Times)
Couple sue Phx PD over alleged cover-up (Courthouse News)
Phx cops exonerated in home shooting (New Times)
Board clears Phx cops in shooting (AZ Republic)
A Republican healthcare bill (CS Monitor)
Creationists and the Ardi fossil (ABC News)
Teachers push for four-day week (Fox News)
Obama and the General (WSJ)
Animal cruelty and free speech (NY Times)
Obama too distracted for
Clunkers in practice (WSJ)
Congress should be bigger (Jonah Goldberg)
Hate crimes bill passes House (NY Times)
New character in Pooh sequel (NY Times)
Thumbs on the wheel vs texting (NY Times)
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
~How sure are you that racism is a choice? Given its current highly disfavored status, surely there are lots of people who would rather not be racists, but can’t seem to help it.
~Racism is just an the logical extension of putting your family first. How else do you decide who to favor and exclude with your affections and your resources?
~With all the effort we’ve expended to stop it and failed, maybe we should just accept that racism is a normal human idea.
~Since racism proceeds from experience, trying to get people to not be at all racist is trying to get them to close their eyes and forget their experiences.
~Racism is just a larger version of stereotypes, and we all know that stereotypes must have some validity to them or they wouldn’t form in the first place.
~According to evolution, some species are more favored than others, and if humans all evolved either independently or else branched off over time, there is certainly reason to believe that some of the groups may have evolved further than other groups.
~Everyone is a little bit racist, and if you think you aren’t, you’re fooling yourself.
~Most people would rather work with and live with and socialize with people who talk like them, dress like them, and look like them. Is that so wrong?
~It’s unbelievably expensive. Just imagine what better uses for that money exist.
~As a task, it’s far too difficult. The disappointment-to-reward ratio is about as bad as being a Cubs fan.
~It’s elitist, sexist, and racist. Only the rich can afford to play nice courses, and the history of golfers on diversity is horrible. Augusta still doesn’t allow women, and they only got their first black member in 1990.
~Golfers aren’t known for being great people. Ask yourself a simple question: when someone tells you that so-and-so is an avid golf player, is your first instinct, “Wow, he must be a really nice guy?”
~Golfers regularly swear, drink alcohol, and gamble.
~A golf course is a terrible waste of resources, primarily water and pesticides.
~Despite all the clear rules, everyone in golf cheats. It’s only a matter of how much.
~It tends toward obsession, often to the neglect of family responsibilities.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Congress needs a waiting period (WSJ)
Bad Medicine (WSJ)
The disarmament illusion (WSJ)
Playing chicken with suicide bombers (NYT)
One man’s rumor is another man’s reality (LA Times)
Only two options on Iran (WSJ)
Health reform IS income redistribution (WSJ)
You commit three felonies a day (WSJ)
Spanking hurts kids’ IQ (ABC News)
Obama against summer break? (Yahoo News)
Put away the race card (JC Watts)
Valley bars prepare for guns (AZ Republic)
Cheerleader’s Bible signs under fire (Chattanooga Times)
Mom prohibited from watching neighbors’ kids (CBS News)
Yale Press censors Danish cartoon violence (CNS News)
Pregnancy centers report favorable (CNS News)
Obama backtracking commitment to Afghanistan (CNS News)
USSC agrees to review Chicago handgun ban (CNS News)
More gay characters on TV (CNS News)
Michael Moore: Capitalism did nothing for me (CNS News)
American Girl’s new homeless doll (Chicago Sun-Times)
Piracy declining (Wash Times)
Obama hasn’t met with Repubs in 4 months (Wash Times)
Stay-at-home moms census snapshot (USA Today)
2010: It pays for wealthy to die (USA Today)
Fan with anti-Vick shirt banned (Philly Inquirer)
Pentagon criticism of “don’t ask” (Boston Globe)
Criminal deportees often fly out alone (Houston Chronicle)
Toyota floor-mat recall (USA Today)
Denver increases homeless funding (Denver Post)
RV sales indicate econ upswing (USA Today)
4 teens charged in fatal beating of student (USA Today)
LA ban on digital billboards upheld (LA Times)
States eye explicit billboards (USA Today)
Pope to Europe: remember Christian heritage (Wash Post)
Netanyahu’s speech at UN (Wash Times)
Zazi terror plot worst since 9/11 (Fox News)
Needy Denver students get free clothes (Denver Post)
Swine-flu parties? (USNWR)
Hollywood’s twisted view of child sexual abuse (Findlaw)