The truth about sexual violence statistics

More ways to lie with statistics.  From an article by Christina Hoff Sommers: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released a study suggesting that rates of sexual violence in the United States are comparable to those in the war-stricken Congo. How is that possible? The CDC’s National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey found that, in the United States in 2010, approximately 1.3 million women were raped and an additional 12.6 million women and men were victims of… Read more

Unclean spirits

Sunday the Gospel reading was Mark 1:21-28 on Jesus casting out an unclean spirit.  Here is what Pastor Douthwaite did with that text: Now, several things strike me about this account so far. First, it seems as if no one knew there was a man with an unclean spirit among them. They all went to church that Sabbath, like normal. They all sat in their regular pews, in their regular places, like normal, like good Lutherans! They saw their friends… Read more

Emotional Freedom Technique?

Should Christians employ acupuncture, yoga, and other “alternative medicine” treatments whose theoretical foundations come out of Eastern or New Age religions?  All of those energy meridians, chakras, and the like are far removed from a Christian worldview, much less the worldview of modern science. And yet they seem to “work” for many people, as if there might be an innocently secular physiological explanation.  (Notice how being “secular” in the sense of non-religious can be a good thing from a Christian… Read more

Inflation remains low–thanks to Bernanke?

One of the Republican candidate’s favorite whipping boys is Ben Bernanke, head of the Federal Reserve.  They have been accusing him of employing monetary policies that produce inflation.  But it turns out, inflation rates continue to be low: Bernanke didn’t need to rebut his critics; the facts already have. Earlier Wednesday, the Fed reported that expectations are inflation will remain between 1.4 percent and 1.8 percent for 2012 and between 1.5 percent and 2 percent through 2014. The exceptionally low… Read more

Put a bird on it, but not a real bird

More Portlandia. . . . This is more than a satire of artsiness.  It cuts to the human condition:   how we idealize nature while also loathing and fearing actual nature. HT:  Joanna Read more

Navy Seals do it again

Another example of the prowess of the U. S. military: Around 2 a.m. Wednesday, elders in the Somali village of Galkayo said they began hearing an unusual sound: the whirl of helicopters. It was the culmination of a daring and risky mission by about two dozen members of the Navy Seals to rescue two hostages — an American aid worker and her Danish colleague — held by Somali pirates since October. The commandos had dropped down in parachutes under a… Read more

Newt vs. Reagan

Newt Gingrich is always wrapping himself in the mantle of Ronald Reagan, but at the time, when Newt was a Congressman, he was best known for criticizing Reagan’s policies and for putting down the president.  So says Reagan administration official Elliott Abrams, who was there: Here at home, we faced vicious criticism from leading Democrats — Ted Kennedy, Christopher Dodd, Jim Wright, Tip O’Neill, and many more — who used every trick in the book to stop Reagan by denying… Read more

The rise of American emotionalism

In the context of discussing an embarrassing video in which a hysterical fan blames the playoff loss of the Green Bay Packers on the fact that she wore sparkly nail polish, Ed Driscoll quotes a passage from David Frum’s  How We Got Here: The ‘70s: The Decade That Brought You Modern Life — For Better Or Worse: What an amazing turn of events. Only a generation before, the United States had been the homeland of efficiency and practicality, a country… Read more

Death as a solution to life vs. life as a solution to death

Last Sunday was Life Sunday, with Scripture readings about Jonah and the calling of the first Disciples.  See what Pastor Douthwaite did with all of this, how he turned the pro-life message into being not just about Law (abortion is terrible) but about the Gospel.  A sample: Death is sin made visible. Death is horrible, death is grizzly, death is sad, death is separation because sin is all those things. We die because sin robs us of life. We were… Read more

State of the Union

I always make a point of watching the annual state of the union address–no matter who the president is– as a sort of patriotic discipline. But I was not able to watch it last night. What did I miss? What did you learn? Read more

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