“The World’s Largest Gathering of Free Minds”

I have deep interest in and sympathy for a communitarian position (as might, perhaps, be vaguely discernible even in my immediately past entry on this blog).  But I also lean strongly toward libertarianism, particularly in matters of government economic policy.  Which is why I'm calling your attention to FreedomFest 2012, created and led by my friend Dr. Mark Skousen.Some will be inclined to see my stance as incoherent.  I prefer to call it "complex," "nuanced," and "rich."  … [Read more...]

Master Teacher

A touching tribute from one of my colleagues to Lowell Bennion, a man whom I never met but who had a perfectly enormous, life-transforming, impact upon a number of people for whom I have great respect and affection:http://homewaters-recompenses.blogspot.com/2012/06/my-debt-to-lowell-bennion.html … [Read more...]

The Thrill of Victory? The Agony of Defeat.

Looking toward the San Gabriel MountainsToward the end of my junior year at San Gabriel High School in California, I decided to run for the office of student body president.  The school had something on the order of 2500 students.There were several candidates competing, but my most substantial rival was a fellow who had, I think, served on our freshman, sophomore, and junior class councils, and as president of at least one of the classes and perhaps two.  An obviously popular guy, he … [Read more...]

The Incredible Shrinking Obama

I disagree with Barack Obama on grounds of principle, and would vote and campaign against him even if he were the most competent executive and political leader ever known.  (In fact, such competence would have made him more dangerous than, in fact, he has been.  And that's been bad enough.)But there is a growing sense, even among some who would otherwise be inclined to support him, that he's just plain in over his head.Mark Halperin was saying it in Time magazine already back in … [Read more...]

FAIR’s Annual Conference, August 2012

For those who might be unaware of it, the annual conference of the Foundation for Apologetic Information and Research (FAIR) will be held this year on 2-3 August, at the South Towne Exposition Center in Sandy, Utah.Information about the program, and about registration for the conference, can be found athttp://www.fairlds.org/fair-conferences/2012-fair-conference/conf12aThere will be presentations on topics relating to directions in the Book of Mormon, gender and homosexuality, Mormon … [Read more...]

“The Reformation of Morals”

The first volume in the Eastern Christian Texts series (a sister project, within BYU's Middle Eastern Texts Initiative [METI], to the Islamic Translation Series), was a parallel Arabic-English edition of Yahya b.‘Adi's The Reformation of Morals, translated and introduced by Father Sidney H. Griffith, a leading scholar of Arabic Christianity (and a friend) at the Catholic University of America. Yahya ibn ‘Adi (893-974 A.D.) was one of the most important Christian authors to have written in … [Read more...]

“Why We Fear Mormons”

An interesting article in the New York Times by BYU's J. Spencer Fluhman. … [Read more...]

“Bare Ruined Choirs”

Reihan Salam takes a look at an interesting issue:"Getting Irreligion: How Should Conservatives Respond to Declining Church Attendance?"(He himself is a non-observant Muslim.)It may come as a surprise to some that religiosity seems to be on the gradual decline in the United States, overall.  But that seems to be so. Whether it's a cyclical matter, or a long-term thing, who knows? I suspect, though, that the same dynamics that are causing it have also influenced a significant … [Read more...]