The Common English Bible

A new Bible translation is now available, the Common English Bible.  Check out the website, which includes this comparison of passages from the new CEB and other translations:  Common English Bible – Compare Translations. What agendas are evident in this translation?  What theology is at work in the word choices?  What can you say about the literary quality of the CEB? HT: Matthew Cantirino Read more

The Murray Gell-Mann Amnesia effect

Joe Carter, via a string of other blogs, quotes the late Michael Crichton’s 2002 essay “Why Speculate?”: Media carries with it a credibility that is totally undeserved. You have all experienced this, in what I call the Murray Gell-Mann Amnesia effect. (I call it by this name because I once discussed it with Murray Gell-Mann, and by dropping a famous name I imply greater importance to myself, and to the effect, than it would otherwise have.) Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann… Read more

What would aliens do?

This sort of thing attracts ridicule and alarm in the media and the blogosphere–“NASA thinks aliens will wipe us out to stop global warming!”  as with “Pentagon plans war with Canada”!–but agencies and consultants spin out possible scenarios and make contingency plans for everything imaginable.   I draw your attention to this one just for its Science Fiction possibilities: Shawn Domagal-Goldman of Nasa’s Planetary Science Division and his colleagues compiled a list of plausible outcomes that could unfold in the aftermath… Read more

Mormons rule on the Web

Go to Google and type “church.”  (Go ahead.  We’ll wait.)  How close to the top of results was Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (a.k.a., the Mormons)?  Now try a search for another word like “Friend.”  Or “Old Testament.”  Note how the Mormons keep coming up towards the top of the search.  (For that matter, note how often they come up in the Google ads on this blog!  I suspect this post will attract a lot of them!)… Read more

A plague on both your houses

Allan Sloan, an editor of Fortune, blames BOTH tea party conservatives AND the Obama administration for bungling our economic crisis: What the hell is going on? We thought the worst was behind us, but it wasn’t, thanks largely to fallout from the Standard & Poor’s downgrade of U.S. credit brought on us by the incompetence of our alleged national leaders. Only three short years ago, the world financial system was on the brink of disaster after Lehman Brothers went broke… Read more

What he said vs. how it was reported

Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn is quoted in the Tulsa World as saying President Obama wants to “create dependency” because it “worked so well for him” as an “African American male.” Now he is getting lambasted as a racist. Washington Post columnist Greg Sargent went to the trouble of digging out the entire transcript.  Yes, he said those words, but here is the rest of what he said, in answer to a question about whether President Obama is trying to destroy… Read more

We’re #1

My alma mater, the University of Oklahoma, is rated #1 in all four of the major preseason polls for NCAA football.  I’m realizing that I’d better brag now, before the games actually start, since, if history is a guide, the Sooners’ pre-eminence is likely to fade once they actually start to play some games.  Still, I am proud.   The four polls also agree in ranking Alabama #2.  After that, opinions differ. Check out the polls:  2011 NCAA College Football Polls… Read more

Make a good shoe

A while ago I blogged about Tullian Tchividjian–Billy Graham’s grandson and the successor to William Kennedy as the pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church”–and his reaction to Lutheran novelist Bo Giertz.  (He offered a clarification to that post:   “I didn’t say that Giertz caused a Copernican revolution in my preaching but that the conversation between Henrik and Linder described the Copernican revolution that took place in my preaching a number of years ago.”) He since has written an interesting post about… Read more

The latest on confession and indulgences

Todd alerted me to this story from Reuters: The Vatican has granted priests the right to forgive the sin of abortion when hearing the confessions of hundreds of thousands of young people attending a Roman Catholic youth festival in Spain this week. The termination of pregnancy is a sin punishable by excommunication under Church law. The World Youth Day (WYD) pilgrims will attend a mass confession in the presence of Pope Benedict on Saturday in a central Madrid park. “This… Read more

Obama’s new stimulus plan

President Obama will soon propose a new economic stimulus plan, one that will combine tax cuts, lots of new spending, AND deficit reduction: President Obama has decided to press Congress for a new round of stimulus spending and tax cuts as he seeks to address the great domestic policy quandary of his tenure: how to spur job growth in an age of austerity. Obama will lay out a series of ideas in a major address right after Labor Day, when… Read more

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