“Capernaum bears witness of Christ”

Aerial view of Capernaum (Click to enlarge)

   One of my very favorite places to visit, for reasons that I explained in a newspaper column a few years ago: http://www.deseretnews.com/article/700038919/Capernaum-bears-witness-of-Christ.html I really enjoy introducing it to people.  I'm taking a break this year, but I'm scheduled to lead a tour there in late April of 2015.   … [Read more...]

Two films

A strong cast (including Cate Blanchett, not shown here)

   We returned home a while ago from seeing The Monuments Men. It hasn't received particularly strong reviews -- according to Rotten Tomatoes, audiences have liked it better than critics have -- but we enjoyed it. I suspect that a little bit of my enjoyment, at least, came from the fact that it covered the same general period and region of the Second World War in which my father was involved.  (It occurs in the vicinity of Patton's Third … [Read more...]

Another global mystery

Something to contemplate

  I found this on the Cruise Lady website. I'm sure there's deep cosmic significance in it. If it looks like a duck and it quacks like a duck, it's a duck. We're halfway there.   … [Read more...]

“President Obama’s foreign policy is based on fantasy”

Russian tanks in the Crimea? No.  Russian tanks putting down the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. We've seen this movie before.

  I've been roundly criticized and even denounced for my criticisms of Barack Obama.   I strongly feel, and have always felt, not only that he's too far to the ideological left but that he's far out of his depth.  Putting an untested community organizer up against the veteran KGB officer who leads Russia struck me as unspeakably foolish in 2008, and subsequent events haven't caused me to rethink my view.  (Mitt Romney was mocked and derided for publicly describing Vladimir P … [Read more...]

An agent from the National Security Agency is caught red-handed spying on ordinary Americans

Speak no evil, see no evil, hear no evil. (But click to enlarge.)

  Those of you who remain unconcerned about Federal snooping into the conversations of innocent American citizens need to watch this chilling documentary footage: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9gtV-rSyEc   … [Read more...]

“The Great Enrichment”

This scene can easily be replicated worldwide, literally millions and millions of times.

   Private charity and emergency government relief have their legitimate places, and are sometimes urgently necessary.  Charitable care for the poor is also an important divine commandment. However, I have real doubts about the efficacy of "foreign aid."  In fact, rather like current American "welfare" policies, I suspect that a better case can be made for its long term harmfulness than for its supposed benefits over time.  (I was introduced to the wo … [Read more...]

“Exploring ‘gods’ scriptures” (not altogether my favorite title)

No painting I know does this theme justice.

  A 2010 Deseret News article that still seems worth having written: http://www.deseretnews.com/article/705385649/Dan-Peterson-Exploring-gods-scriptures.html    … [Read more...]

Providence, or pure lucky coincidence?


  I think I'm aware of all or most of the major arguments against the reality of divinely providential interventions in daily life.  I understand selection bias.  I'm keenly aware that the anguished prayers of parents to save the life of their children often seem to go ignored while other people, not apparently any more righteous, appear to be supernaturally led to find lost keys or to acquire a not-strictly-needed vacation beach home.  I once even offered a slightly to … [Read more...]