Unchecked righteousness

Charles Lane of the Washington Post comments on the electric car fiasco, discussing the multiple failures of government investments and the disappointing performance and sales of the vehicles. The occasion is the disastrous roadtrip in a Tesla described by John M. Broder in the New York Times.  What interests me is not electric cars but the category of error that Lane identifies:

I accept the president’s good intentions. He didn’t set out to rip off the public. Nor was the electric-car dream a Democrats-only delusion. Several Republican pols shared it, too.

Rather, the debacle is a case study in unchecked righteousness. The administration assumed the worthiness and urgency of its goals. Americans should want electric cars, and therefore they would, apparently. [Read more…]

Insurance “rate shock” under Obamacare

The cost of health insurance will go up dramatically under Obamacare, people are starting to realize.  This will be true especially for the young healthy types that aren’t buying insurance now but will soon have to; that is to say, the currently uninsured, the ones Obamacare is supposed to help!

What a surprise!  Who knew?  Who could have guessed that would happen?  How could forcing insurance companies to take everybody, charge everyone the same, and provide free services possibly raise insurance rates?  I thought Obamacare was the way we were going to rein in health care costs.  After all, the program is called “The Affordable Health Care Act”!

Yet more reason to wonder, how can Obamacare possibly–even theoretically– work? [Read more…]

Fanaticism

The learned and wise John T. Pless, a professor at  Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, warns against fanaticism.  He is discussing the recent controversy over a pastor participating in an interfaith service, showing that some on both sides have slipped into fanaticism, as described by both Hermann Sasse (the anti-Nazi confessional Lutheran theologian) and Steven Paulson (the radically Lutheran ELCA theologian).  If you remain interested in that particular controversy, which seems to have run its course with the pastor’s apology followed by the synodical president’s apology, follow the link.

However, this is not a post about that, nor do I want that to be the subject of the discussion in the comments.  We have exhausted that topic.  I will instead excerpt what Prof. Pless says about fanaticism, a far broader and more applicable topic that deserves our reflection. [Read more…]

The last pope before the End Times?

More doomsday predictions, this time from the Roman Catholic side!  According to writings attributed to St. Malachy in 1139, pope #112 will be the last one, and then Jesus will return.  That would be the successor to Pope Benedict XVI, who is #111. [Read more…]

The State of the Union & Mardi Gras

OK, this is rather belated, but still. . . .The quite liberal Dana Milbank takes the prize for best comments on the State of the Union Address:

There is something entirely appropriate about holding the State of the Union address on the same day as Mardi Gras.

One is a display of wretched excess, when giddy and rowdy participants give in to reckless and irresponsible behavior.

The other is a street festival in New Orleans. [Read more…]

Rejecting Christ’s sacrifice

Liberal Catholic intellectual Garry Wills has a new book out entitled Why Priests?:  A Failed Tradition in which he makes the rather un-Catholic argument that Jesus institute the priesthood.  But he goes farther, giving a Catholic version of what many mainline Protestants and even some supposed evangelicals are saying:  That Christ was not sacrificed for our sins. [Read more…]


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