Thursday, September 30, 2010
Proposition 112 (AZR)
AZ job training funds revived (AZR)
McDonald’s may drop health plan (WSJ)
Christian bookstore name called offensive (Kittanning Paper)
Complaint filed over politics in church (CP)
Obama discusses his faith (CP)
Obama “a Christian by choice” (Fox News)
Toy makers seek new safety rule exemptions (NYT)
Saying no to “I do” with economy in mind (NYT)
Prop 111 (AZR)
Park51 stakeholder considers different site (CP)
One third of “extinct” animals turn up again (Daily Mail)
Taxing the rich (John Stossel)
Why Obama’s Israel diplomacy is flailing (Richard Cohen)
Advertising on school walls? (Fox News)
The real income inequality scandal (VDare)
USSC will post audio of every argument weekly (AP)
Sec. Educ. promises to make kids green (CNS News)
Colbert reminded us immig. is moral issue (CP)
Colbert to Congress (Grist)
Fisher-Price recalls 10 million toys (LAT)
Environmentalist: too few people will be problem (CNS News)
Science Czar confronted on redistribution, runs (CNS News)
Congress avoids Colbert (Politico)
Activists release minks (AZR)
1 in 5 gay men has HIV (Reuters)
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
~Only the most zealous people engage in it, and it is precisely such people who make the very worst representatives of Christian love and joy.
~Every time I’ve seen street preachers, it has either made me think Christians were all weird (when I was an agnostic) or made me think that this is making all Christians look weird (since I’ve become one).
~Most pastors I personally know have said something to the effect that street preaching just makes their job harder.
~Nobody likes to be accosted when all you’re trying to do is walk down the street and mind your own business.
~Street preachers would be much more useful if they would take their same energy and devote it to serving the community so that the community wants to know why they’re being so generous and sacrificial.
~If it were illegal, then we would also have the security of knowing that false religions also wouldn’t be able to use this tactic.
~What would the crazies at the Westboro cult do if they couldn’t do their highly offensive street preaching?
~Just like a book someone is willing to finance has more likelihood of being accurate and valuable, an evangelist who can earn a church and its support is more likely to not be a flake.
~Preaching repentance is far too serious a business to conduct in such a silly, ineffective way.
~In America, we believe in checks and balances and separation of powers, right?
~Power always makes you believe a bit too much in your cause.
~People envy us and resent us, which compromises our Christian witness.
~Hasn’t America propped up third world dictators because it suited our economic or political purposes?
~Monopolies are bad in business but good in politics? Well, it may be good to be the monopolist.
~Look at how much of our budget gets wasted on military because we are the biggest ones on the block.
~Is our nation truly a healthy one to whom you would entrust the sort of global dominance power we wield?
~If America were less, others would be forced to be more to make up the difference.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Senate Reps block DADT repeal (CP)
Obamas go to church (CP)
Colbert at Congress? (CSM)
Repubs unveil “Pledge to America” (CBS)
Islam, immigration, and Catholics (CT)
Sesame Street cuts Katy Perry segment (AP)
6 in UK arrested for Quran burning (AP)
Fed up Mexicans turning to vigilante justice (CSM)
Physical explanation for parting of Red Sea? (CSM)
FL court strikes down gay adoption ban (CNN)
For many, health care relief begins today (NYT)
ADF supports AZ return to spouse-only benefits (ADF)
AZ to assess gas-pipe safety (AZR)
AZ docs may face marijuana dilemma (AZR)
Thieves cart off St. Louis bricks (NYT)
Colvin and maple bats (ASU State Press)
Do Senators understand homosexual conduct? (Townhall)
Dream Act derailed (AZR)
Dream Act stalls in Senate (Color Lines)
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
~You’re less likely to be drawn into error. How many times have you been saved from some stupidity by doubt or regretted not being?
~How bad do you feel when you were gullible? How bad do you feel when you were skeptical? ~That should tell you what the default should be.
~The world is out to mislead you, whether intentionally or not.
~When you look at people who believe in false religions, aren’t you wishing they would express some doubt?
~You aren’t suckered into scams.
~You aren’t likely to join a cult.
~If something is true, it’ll hold up to the questions.
~If some idea wants my affirmation, it needs to persuade me. I don’t just marry every wishful young notion who courts my affections.
~Gullible is never spoken of as a virtue.
~Just look around at all the ridiculous things people believe because they don’t have enough capacity for doubt.
~Doubt is the cornerstone of modern science. The attempt to disprove things and then to accept whatever remains.
~If someone doesn’t know how to doubt, they are just going to become ideological robots.
Virtue of doubt
Postmodern doubt (Christian)
~We’re supposed to be content with whatever situation we find ourselves in.
~Angels singing and trumpets playing are not a morose or serious picture.
~Daniel and David are the people most after God’s heart, and they’re the happiest as well.
~Dennis Prager claims that unhappiness is a powerful testimony to the falsehood of a religion because the unhappy person is either a good practitioner of a religion which doesn’t work or else a poor practitioner of a religion which does but is apparently so hard to do right that it’s adherents can’t do it. If he’s right, and Christians are supposed to be bringing others into Christianity, then wouldn’t that make unhappiness a sin? It either turns people off to Christ or to you as His representative, right?
~Joy is the fruit of the Spirit
~Sadness is just lack of faith in a God who is supposed to meet all our real needs.
~Only circumstances can make you sad, and why are you so concerned with circumstances?
~Worry is a major cause of sadness, and Jesus tells us specifically not to worry.
~Fear is a major cause of sadness, and we are repeatedly told to not fear.
~If you know Jesus, how can you ever be sad?
~There won’t be any tears in heaven, and we should be trying to emulate that now, shouldn’t we?
~Laugh and the world laughs with you, cry and you cry alone.
~The main thing that produces sorrow is sin, why should we let sin control us?
~The Catholic church, following Aquinas, taught that sloth is the laziness that keeps us from meditating on God’s goodness and doing the works that flow from loving Him, and this term Acedia was originally translated as sadness, especially the sadness at failing to fully manifest the fruit of the spirit, which led to inactivity: sloth.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
10 Boomerang kids who clashed with their parents (funny compilation)
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Making prisons safer
Stock market trading: computers 1, investors 0 (CS Monitor)
Top 10 reasons Quran burning is unbiblical (C Post)
What the Mosque controversy shows about America (Findlaw)
The next Christian response to Islam (Christianity Today)
Founding fathers on Islam (Library of Congress)
Census: 1 in 7 live in poverty (CNS News)
Mexico celebrates 200th anniversary (AZ Republic)
NJ teacher 90 days in jail for ejecting student (NJ.com)
Girl, 6, kicked off team over sexy cheer (Fox News)
Jeter’s great acting job (Huffington Post)
Jeter’s apology (ESPN)
Darnell Dockett mocks Ines Sainz (Huffington Post)
Bush forfeits 2005 Heisman (CNS News)
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
~They cultivate a justice-oriented mindset, not a grace-oriented one.
~Action movies encourage us to practice and enjoy wrath and anger.
~Christian see, Christian do.
~How are action movies redemptive?
~Whom would Jesus shoot with a Beretta?
~Arnold Schwarzenegger probably isn’t the best ambassador for the Sermon on the Mount.
~It’s not generally a good idea to mentally practice killing people.
~Are vigilantes good Christian role models?
~What does it say about a person who really enjoys watching people get blown to bits?
~They make you angry when you see the bad guys do horrible things.
~They make you afraid and perceive the world as being much more dangerous than it really is.
~If children shouldn’t watch it, then adults shouldn’t watch it, unless there is some really valuable counterbalancing value.
~They cultivate a pace of life which is unhealthy.
~You act and drive differently upon leaving the theater.
~Jerry Bruckheimer is not the producer of all things Christian.
~“Blow ‘em all away” is not a particularly Christian sentiment
~They’re never realistic, especially in their depiction of the horrors of combat and killing.
~We are supposed to turn the other cheek.
~We are supposed to overcome evil with good.
~Jesus never took up arms against an unjust anything.
~Paul never defended himself with arms.
~Jesus stopped Peter from defending Him with a sword.
~Can show me the place in the Bible where Jesus tells people to take up arms?
~Early Christians taught that if a soldier was born again, he should leave the army.
~How does killing someone deliberately honor the idea that God created that person in His own image?
~When you think of Jesus, do you think of Him riding the .50 on a Blackhawk?
~Who would Jesus bomb?
~To take someone’s life is to destroy someone who can actually and potentially praise God. This, therefore, robs God of praise that is due to Him.
~If Jesus didn’t overturn the Roman Empire, what form of government deserves to be fought with arms?
~We do not wage war against flesh and blood, but against spiritual powers.
~It’s impossible to think that a country will look at its own warfare and say, “Hey, maybe we’re in the wrong here.” Hence Just War Theory never actually works in real life to restrain warfare.
~Who loves warfare? What sort of person? How is it that the most sinful, vengeful, hating person can wind up being in agreement with supposed Christians on something as significant as this?
~Life is sacred, therefore taking a life is desecrating God’s image in people.
~You can’t be pro-war and pro-life at the same time.
~When has anyone ever looked at warfare in reality and been overwhelmed with the impulse to worship God because of the beauty of the thing he beheld?
~How many action movies have profanity and sexuality in them?
Romans 13 and the purpose of government
~This means that individuals and governments are ontologically different sorts of entities.
~What’s necessary for the state would be wrong for the individual
~Taxing would be theft
~Jail would be kidnapping
~Warfare would be murder.
~In a nation populated by Christians, it would be very odd to say that only the non-Christian could be in the military or government and wield those powers. But that’s the logical conclusion any pacifist must hold.
~Obviously, God called people to wage war in the Old Testament, including David, Abraham, Gideon, and Joshua, notably.
Is there a Christian way to wage war?
~Well, like so many other things, the key isn’t that you must not do it, but that will inevitably do it in a way different from the world when you do it God’s way.
~That’s how Just War Theory came about. As a way of codifying Christian principles into the times and methods of war conduct.
~We realize that the New Testament tells us precious little about how to run a government by Christian principles. ~Therefore, they key is to do things differently, not necessarily to not do them at all.
~Principles that apply to warfare: Humility, Patience, Respect, Prayer, Self-criticism, Faith in God, Mercy
Just War Theory:
Jus ad Bellum (Justice of the War)
~Just cause for going to war
~Right intentions in going to war
~Public declaration of war by a constituted authority
~Good achieved outweigh evil incurred
~All means of resolution been exhausted prior to war
Jus in Bello (Justice of the Warfare)
~Discrimination between combatants and non-combatants
~Means proportional to ends
~Means relevant to ends
~Minimum force principleAlways be aimed at achieving peace
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
County boycotts hotels with porn (ABC News)
Cardinal,"I can't say, 'Don't embrace Quran.'" (CNS News)
Evang. Leader says mosque is good foreign policy (CNS News)
More children being raised by grandparents (Pew)
Terry Jones is setting fire to America’s identity (CS Monitor)
Who is Terry Jones? (ABC News)
Webhost takes down Jones’s websites (SF Chronicle)
Christian leaders repeat calls to stop Koran-burning (C Post)
Petraeus: Burning Quran could endanger troops (C Post)
How Koran burning would play in Mulsim world (CS Monitor)
Trump offers to buy off mosque investors (NY1)
Christians encouraged to be good neighbors to Park51 (C Post)
Brewer: no more debates (Politico)
The gospel of wealth (NYT)
NY school district allows rosaries (C Post)
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
~Deprives authors of their revenues.
~Completely uncensored content not good for kids or adults
~They spend so much money acquiring DVDs not books these days
~They often wind up just being secondary homeless shelters
~Internet is used for games and chatting, if not porn.
~When you buy a book, you take it more seriously
~When you own a book, you can take notes in it and mark it up, as you should.
~Why should we be forced to pay money so that other people have access to their favorite romantic novels?
~Libraries rarely have the books I am personally interested in checking out, on theology and Christian thought.
~The magazine section is disturbingly shallow and trashy in what is carried.
~This is just a form of wealth redistribution, from people who buy large houses to those who can’t afford books.
~Our view is that humans are special and animals and plants are not. Therefore we exploit them and do not care about them except as means to our own selfish ends.
~Christians and Western Civilization are the reason for ecological damage because we have this attitude of superiority and contempt for the planet.
~We are commanded to subdue the earth, not be friends with it.
~Nature exists for us to use as we will.
~We are supposed to have dominion over the earth. Does that sound like something a granola would say?
~Every conflict between human interests and the interests of nature or of animals result in a win for the humans because only humans are created in the image of God.
~Environmentalists raise up both animals and sometimes even plants or rocks to a status morally equivalent to humans. They cry over trees and squirrels, but not people.
~When you start down the path of caring about the environment, how do you stop from becoming a Buddhist, who believes it is evil to kill a mosquito?
~We always find ways to solve these problems anyhow, so why worry about them?
~Eco-terrorism is the most common kind of terrorism in America.
~Environmentalists are atheistic or pantheistic and at the very least naturalistic, as opposed to being Christians.
Bible References: Genesis 1:1-31, Genesis 2:15, Genesis 3:17-19, Genesis 8:21-9:17, Deut 20:19-20, Deut 25:4, Prov 12:10, Psalm 19:1, Psalm 24:1-2, Psalm 65:8-13, Psalm 96:11-12, Matthew 10:29-31, John 3:16-17, Romans 1:18-20
Naturalism fails, too.
o From whence come our obligations to care for the planet on an evolutionary worldview?
o We got here by exploitation and dominance.
o There is no basis for ecology as a moral imperative.
o Perhaps as a practical one, but even so, that which is most fit is merely that which survives. Only time will tell whether the ecologists or the non-ecologists were right.
o If we die, well that’s what we deserve. Evolution does not care one way or another.
o Species being destroyed is how all species got here, right?
Conservatism and conservation
o Teddy Roosevelt
o Conserve is at the heart of our very philosophy, right?
o It’s not that Christianity and environmental concern are at odds with each other, it’s that most Christians haven’t been doing good theology in their thinking about the world.
o One can make the argument that Christianity compels ecological awareness and also that naturalism is an inadequate source of that very thing as well.
Keller’s four features of Christianity
1. Creation is good
§ Everything is good in Genesis 1, even before there are humans.
§ The world is God’s handiwork
2. Stewardship of Creation
§ Gardeners, cultivate
§ Covenant is to save
· God enters into a covenant with animals and the earth
· They don’t sin
· But we do and have polluted it with our sin
· We have sinned and caused the earth to groan, God wants to save us and the world we contaminated
· Humans, indeed, are the problem. Unredeemed human beings.
§ We need to get on God’s side and work to save the Earth from human sin and destruction and exploitation.
§ We are powerful, the animals and the plants are weak. What is the attitude
3. Fallenness of Creation
§ What’s so bad about species extinction if you’re a secularist?
§ We want to fight the decay and destruction that is all too natural these days
§ We fight disease, for instance, because we view nature as corrupted and fallen.
4. The restoration of Creation
§ Secularism says this world is temporary and will end
§ Other religions say we will depart this world
§ We do not abandon this earth, which is permanent. God restores it to the condition it should always have been in.
§ Will there be trees in the New Jerusalem?
· The Tree of Life
§ Will there be rivers in the New Jerusalem
· The River of Life
What is the Earth
o God’s curio cabinet. He is a very eclectic collector.
o God’s art gallery
o God’s revelation in nature
o Genesis 1
§ Everything is good BEFORE humans get here
§ He is enjoying it, not discovering it
§ It’s a reflection of His goodness.
o Genesis 8-9
§ Covenant with the whole world and with all flesh
§ The rainbow isn’t only for us.
o Deut 24
§ Treat the animal with respect by letting him eat of his own effort.
o Prov 12:10
§ Righteousness to treat animals well.
o Deut 20:19
§ God counsels ecological restraint to an army.
o Psalm 19
§ The heavens declare the glory of God.
o Psalm 65
§ God cares deeply for the earth and causes it to flourish
o Psalm 96
§ Trees sing the praises of God
§ All a tree has to do to glorify God is be a tree.
§ Trees don’t need humans to have value.
§ They are sacred and have intrinsic value.
§ They are not just potential wood. They have value in themselves.
o John 3:16-17
§ Cosmos is the Greek word for world.
o Romans 1
§ If we are to tell God’s glory from nature, then defiling nature is very much like defiling or altering the Bible.
§ Destroying the world is like burning Bibles.
TREES by Joyce Kilmer, c1917
I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree
A tree whose hungry mouth is pressed
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day
And lifts her leafy arms to pray,
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair
Upon whose blossom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems were made by fools like me
But only God can make a tree.
Can faith be green? Sermon (Tim Keller)
A conversation with a Christian ecologist (NYT)
A Christian farm (NYT Magazine)
Trees, Poem (Joyce Kilmer)
The [Christian] Historical Roots of our Ecological Crisis (Lynn White)
Was Lynn White right? (John Richardson)
Comments on Lynn White (JASA)
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Monday, September 6, 2010
Labor Day, U.S. (Wikipedia)
Labour Day, world (Wikipedia)
Trade Union (Wikipedia)
History of Labor Day (US Dept of Labor)
Labor Union Membership in the Light of Scripture
A Christian View of Labor Unions (Freeman)
Is it unbiblical to belong to a labor union? (John MacArthur)
Merits of labor unions (Everyday Christian)
Drawbacks of labor unions (Everyday Christians)
Thursday, September 2, 2010
TX court rejects gay divorce petition (Christian Post)
Mohler bothered by Beck rally (Christian Post)
Beck wants to lead, will Evangelicals follow (Christianity Today)
Ecoterrorist killed at Discover Channel (ABC)
Police kill Discovery building gunman (NBC)
Daniel Quinn, muse of Discovery Channel suspect (CBS)
Sears sells/withdraws offensive mouse pads (CBS 2 Chicago)
Did cash for clunkers work? (Fox Business)
Swing sets removed from schools (Yahoo)
AZ illegal population down 21% in one year (AZR)
WSJ praises LA Times on exposing bad teachers (WSJ)
AZ DUI rates cut in half in 15 years (AZR)
President Obama’s address on Iraq (White House)
A note to my fellow hawks (William Kristol)
Folly of subsidizing unemployment (WSJ)
Ten fallacies about Web privacy (WSJ)
Case against street preachers to proceed (Christian Post)
A very long engagement: Iraq and South Korea (WSJ)
Fired for questioning second-hand smoke claims (Fox News)
HOA battles Laveen man over flag (AZR)
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Not a Christian
~His mother was a Christian-turned atheist, raised by two lapsed Christian parents.
~He has no clear faith record
~He doesn’t have a home church
~He hasn’t attended many churches
~The one church he is known for being a member of was a radical liberation theology church founded by a known radical: Jeremiah Wright Perhaps he’s a supporter of that way of thinking. Perhaps he did it only because it was politically necessary for him in
~He is pro-choice
~He is pro-gay
~His religion is unidentifiable to most Christians.
~Michelle and the girls don’t go to church, either.
~What denomination is he?
~Um, his name?
~He refused to call this a Christian nation overseas
~He is certainly actively building relationships with Muslim countries
~He came out in favor of the Ground Zero Mosque.
~His father was a Muslim turned atheist.
~His stepfather was a Muslim.
~He spent time in
~We know that Muslims who believe in jihad also believe in lying about their true identity
~When Michelle visited
~He hosts Muslim dinners such as during Ramadan
~He was born to a Muslim father, which makes him by definition a Muslim in the eyes of Muslims.
~This is sacred or hallowed ground and should not be politicized.
~We must consider the foreign policy implications of our domestic actions. This will be a recruiting tool for Al Queda.
~Cordoba is a site where the Muslims built a Mosque atop a conquered Christian church. Muslims have a long tradition of building Mosques on sites of conquest, such as Jerusalem.
~This imam is a really bad guy, blaming America for the 9/11 attacks, never repudiating known terrorist organizations, and getting money from dubious sources.
~If we allow this, it will signal weakness to the terrorists and to Muslims generally.
~It’s insensitive to the victims of 9/11 and their families.
~The reasons given for building it are to bring reconciliation, but it clearly isn’t accomplishing that. Therefore, there must be other motives at work here.
~You can build a Mosque at Ground Zero when we can build a church in Mecca.
~There’s already Mosques nearby, why is this one necessary?
~There are all sorts of other places to build it, why here?
~You wouldn’t allow a Shinto cultural center on the periphery of Pearl Harbor while the war was still going on.
~We’re at war. That’s more important than anything else.
~It could become a recruiting ground for terrorists or a funnel point for terrorist activity.
~The Greek Orthodox Church damaged in the attacks still can’t get its permits to be rebuilt.
~64% of people think it’s wrong to do this.
~It’s a provocation and insensitive.
Ban a ground zero mosque? (Steve Chapman)
Obama’s mosque duty (Michael Gerson)
President apostate? (NYT)
What is moderate Islam, a symposium (WSJ)
Mosque imam says fight about Muslim role in US (AP)
Obama: Muslims have right to build (Christian Post)
Never Land Mosque, must read to the end (Mike Adams)