SESAME STREET VS. MARRIAGE: How far Oscar the Grouch has fallen.More here. … [Read more...]

"EVERY CHILD A WANTED CHILD": Ever since I became pro-life (1997-ish), I've thought that was a particularly eerie slogan. If you're not wanted... then what?"Dan Cere, a professor at McGill University and an affiliate scholar at this Institute, wrote a brief paper some years back that I just read, titled 'Every Child a Wanted Child.' He argues that the idea that every child should be 'wanted,' while sounding compassionate, is actually quite disturbing. It does not value children for their own … [Read more...]

LISTENING TO GEORGE JONES, "SHE THINKS I STILL CARE." Somebody make Chan Marshall cover this. … [Read more...]

"'In Beijing,' [Xiao Dongfang] said, 'we see more and more people in writers' circles who are Christians. There is a new literary style called sheng jing ti ['biblical' in Chinese]. It means objective, truthful, terse.'" --Jesus in Beijing … [Read more...]

My sight was poor, but I was sure The sirens watched their blogs for me...Baraita: "This post is actually intended to pick up on a passing comment I made last year, in which I suggested some sort of reading group for bloggers -- or regular blog-commenters for that matter -- who'd enjoy discussing books of Jewish interest in the English language. The comments indicate that (a) several people are very interested and (b) we do not want to get into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which certainly … [Read more...]

PAULINUS SOUNDS COOL: "One of [Peter] Brown's ongoing themes is that the modern distinction between 'popular religion' and 'high religion' is an 18th century philosophy-of-religion idea which actively impedes understanding the early centuries of Christianity (and which may simply be false). Paulinus's poetry and buildings were designed to teach and serve the people of his diocese, but not from a 'separate' kind of religious position in which religion was a tool for the control of the masses -- … [Read more...]

US INDICATES POSSIBLE MAJOR ACTION ON FREE TRADE: Neat! Via KickAAS.The US is urging members of the World Trade Organisation to restart the stalled Doha round negotiations, saying it is prepared to address seriously the issues--particularly agriculture--that led to last year's breakdown at a ministerial meeting in CancĂșn, Mexico.Robert Zoellick, US trade representative, told the Financial Times he would send a letter today to trade ministers of all 148 WTO countries laying out a series of … [Read more...]