This sounds even worse than Rick Perry’s memory lapse, a function not so much of forgetting something but not knowing in the first place: In an interview today with the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain visibly struggled to explain his position on President Obama’s Libya policy. The video is particularly damaging for Cain, who has struggled on matters of foreign policy in the past. Asked if he agreed with the president, Cain said,… Read more

I’ve noticed the phenomenon of someone getting personally offended on behalf of someone else, who, in fact, has not been personally offended.  A complaint has been filed against Catholic University for being insensitive to Muslims–basically by being a Catholic university–even though no Muslims have complained.  From a Washington Post editorial: The press release announcing complaints against Catholic University of America for alleged bias against Muslim and women students begins with a mention of criminal charges leveled against a bishop in… Read more

A huge issue during the Reformation was the right of the laity to receive Holy Communion in “both kinds”; that is, to receive both the bread (Christ’s body) and the wine (Christ’s blood).  The practice of Roman Catholicism up until Vatican II in the 1960s was for the laity to only receive the bread.  Clergy were the only ones allowed to receive the wine. I never understood the rationale for that.  People, such as John Hus, were burned at the… Read more

Kathleen Parker draws attention to something Romney did that he really deserves credit for:  When Rick Perry had his 53-second brain-freeze in which he forgot which agency he was going to shut down, Romney tried to help him. The 53-second eternity has been replayed sufficiently, so we needn’t belabor the cringe-inducing amnesia of the 47th Texas governor. It was so bad that even disciples of schadenfreude ducked under their blankies and prayed for deliverance. “Oops” was all that was left… Read more

The Supreme Court will hear challenges to Obamacare and will hand down a decision probably in July, which will be before the election: The Supreme Court agreed on Monday to decide the fate of President Barack Obama’s healthcare law, with an election-year ruling due by July on the U.S. healthcare system’s biggest overhaul in nearly 50 years. A Supreme Court spokeswoman said oral arguments would take place in March. There will be a total of 5-1/2 hours of argument. The… Read more

Chaplain Mike over at the blog Internet Monk has more to say about his conversion to Lutheranism. He focuses here on how helpful he is finding the Christ-centeredness of Lutheranism and the distinction between Law and Gospel:  How the Lutheran Tradition Answers Many Post-Evangelical Concerns (2) | internetmonk.com. Read the comments too.  Other evangelicals there are drawn to these teachings, though some of them are stumbling over major misconceptions.  Maybe some of you could help. [The discussion yesterday focused nearly… Read more

Michael Spencer ran the blog Internet Monk, which became an important forum for Christians struggling with a whole range of issues in the evangelical world.  Spencer, a Baptist, found lots of help in Lutheran theology, especially in its understanding of the Gospel.  Spencer died of cancer not too long ago.  His blog, though, continues under his successor who goes by the handle “Chaplain Mike.” Chaplain Mike has just announced that he has taken the step of becoming a Lutheran. He has started a… Read more

Julia Duin is a Christian journalist who is a real pro.  She has a long story in the Washington Post Magazine on West Virginia snake handlers.  What I appreciate is that she approaches these mountain Pentecostalists with utter respect,without a shred of condescension or ridicule.  She does, though, describe the desperate social context of these folks–the lack of jobs and young people, the rampant drug abuse in these rural areas–though this isn’t the cause of snake handling, which itself is… Read more

Here is the pattern:  A Republican presidential candidate rises to the top as the alternative to Mitt Romney.  Whereupon he or she gets knocked off the pedestal.  Now it is Newt Gingrich’s turn: Two polls out Friday show former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s campaign gaining traction. And both polls show there’s plenty of room for the race to change dramatically: 17% of respondents are undecided. Newt Gingrich talks to a breakfast crowd during a campaign stop at the Circle Restaurant… Read more

Don’t call people in a coma “vegetables.”  That’s a dehumanizing figure of speech.  And, as researchers have recently discovered, it isn’t necessarily an accurate description: All the patients had the same terrible diagnosis: brain damage that marooned them in a “vegetative state” — alive but without any sense of awareness of themselves or the world around them. But then an international team of scientists tried an ambitious experiment: By measuring electrical activity in the patients’ brains with a relatively simple… Read more

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