Be careful what you google

The anti-terrorism surveillance, we are told, involves just aggregate data and in any event wouldn’t be a bother to ordinary law-abiding citizens.  But a Long Island woman happened to be researching pressure cookers while her husband was shopping for backpacks.  Whereupon six men from an anti-terrorism task force showed up at their home and subjected them to interrogation. [Read more…]

Bringing back audio drama

Do any of you remember radio drama?  How about hearing recordings of radio dramas?  Do you listen to “talking books” on car trips?  There is something special about listening to a story-teller, to the power of sheer aural language.  Notice how the experience engages your imagination even as the images come from outside yourself.

Well, some of my former students are teaming up with veteran writer and  producer Phil Lollar, the co-creator of Adventures in Odyssey  (a Christian children’s series of radio dramas that some of you may remember), to create a similar kind of children’s drama, to be entitled “Iliad House.” [Read more…]

The religious spectrum of liberals and conservatives

E. J. Dionne is a liberal columnist who is also a  faithful Catholic.  He has written a column warning liberals about the anti-religion reflex that some of them display.  In doing so, he cites a useful study of where both liberals and conservatives fall on the religious spectrum. [Read more…]

In vitro meat

Researchers in London served the first hamburger patty that came not from an animal but from genetic engineering.  Those who sampled it which consisted of protein generated from cattle stem cells, said that it tasted “almost like meat.”  Yum, yum.

But many people are heralding the development as the beginning of a new era in food.  No more need we kill animals.  No more will livestock operations pollute the land.  We will be able to generate cheap food for all.   Read about it after the jump, whereupon we will consider the implications. [Read more…]

Buying up the old-guard media

Jeff Bezos, the founder and owner of Amazon.com, has bought the Washington Post.  That was just days after the New York Times unloaded the Boston Globe to the owner of the Boston Red Sox.  But those aren’t the only surprising media acquisitions.  Newsweek, which used to belong to the Post, has been bought by a company with ties to the controversial evangelist David Jang, who started the news site The Christian Post. [Read more…]

Lease-a-spouse

Now that we have changed marriage so that people of the same sex can marry, there are all kinds of other ways we might tinker with the institution.  Attorney Paul Rampell, writing in the Washington Post, says that we need to recognize that marriages, like other legal partnerships, often do not last a lifetime.  So he proposes that marital contracts be developed along the line of leases.  That is, a marriage would be negotiated for a particular period of time, with an option for renewal. [Read more…]