No-hitter in the playoffs

Baseball’s playoffs–generally the best games of the year–got off to an amazing start as the Phillies’ Roy Halladay pitched the second no-hitter in the history of postseason play. (The first was in 1956.): In the last 54 years of baseball history prior to Wednesday night, there had been 952 postseason games played, all of which shared two common traits of omission: None had ever included a no-hit game, and none had ever been graced by Harry Leroy Halladay. But on… Read more

Cranach’s Law & Grace

I saw a reproduction of this print a long time ago in a church basement, and I was happy to stumble upon it in the Wikipedia Commons. (It’s in the public domain, so you could make big posters of this.) It’s Lucas Cranach’s “Law & Grace”: Look closely at the details. (Go here for a larger version.) What is Cranach showing artistically about both the Law and the Gospel? Read more

Government as force for secularization

Conservative Christians used to be all over the map politically, with probably more of them in the Democratic camp.  What happened?   Why are they now tending towards small government political conservatism?  I think Michael Gerson, in the context of a column on another issue, hits it exactly: Among conservative Christians, government is often viewed as a force of secularization — a source of both bureaucratic regulation and moral deregulation. via Michael Gerson – Obama’s new culture war over government’s role…. Read more

Procreation without sex

British biologist Robert G. Edwards won the 2010 Nobel Prize for Medicine for developing the technique of in vitro fertilization.  Beginning in 1978, some 4 million children were born who were conceived outside the womb. Robert G. Edwards’s breakthrough development of in vitro fertilization, which led to the birth of the first “test-tube baby,” Louise Brown, in 1978, gave humanity the power to do what previously was considered the province of God: create and manipulate human life. In the ensuing… Read more

An interview with me

OK, I’m kind of embarrassed to be posting this, but the Washington Examiner did an interview with me.  It mentions you all at this “lively blog” twice, so I guess I should show it to you.  You can even see what I look like: Credo: Gene Veith | Washington Examiner. Read more

Human experimentation

Apparently, the climate of eugenics, euthanasia, racism, and “life not worth living” was current in the United States in the 1940’s, just as it was in Hitler’s Germany. Look what government scientists did in Guatemala: U.S. government medical researchers intentionally infected hundreds of people in Guatemala, including institutionalized mental patients, with gonorrhea and syphilis without their knowledge or permission more than 60 years ago. Many of those infected were encouraged to pass the infection onto others as part of the… Read more

Schism among the atheists

The problem with atheists is that they can’t get along with each other and keep spinning off all of these different sects. [Paul] Kurtz, an 84-year-old who names his dogs for free thinkers throughout history, is the exiled founder of the Center for Inquiry, which is devoted to promoting humanism and criticizing religion. He founded the center’s two affiliates: the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, which investigates claims of the paranormal, like U.F.O. sightings and mental telepathy, and the Council for… Read more

LCMS pastor, action hero

I haven’t read it, but I’ve got to.   Novelist Ray Keating has started a spy, adventure, thriller series whose hero is a pastor in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.  From a review by Russell E. Saltzman: Here is a fun adventure romp, a first novel by former Newsday columnist Ray Keating. Stephen Grant is an ex-CIA agent with notches on his pistol who, with a little bit of angst, turns his back on his secret life and becomes, get this,… Read more

The legacy of Bonnie & Clyde

Arthur Penn died, the director of Bonnie & Clyde (1967).  Who besides me remembers when that came out?  It was a good movie, but it set some things in motion that resonate in Hollywood to this day.  For one thing, since it flagrantly flouted the Production Code (Hollywood’s self-policing limits on sex, violence, bad language, and immoral themes), that code was replaced the very next year with today’s permissive rating system. Ed Driscoll resurrects an interview that leftwing journalist Rick… Read more

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s pay

Why do federal employees generally report less job satisfaction than those in the private sector, even though their pay, benefits, security, and working conditions are generally better?  I suspect lots of reasons.  Here is a theory: There may be yet another explanation for why federal employees have long been less satisfied in their jobs than their private sector counterparts, a new study highlighted in Slate Tuesday reveals. Researchers from Berkeley and Princeton found that workers who know what their peers… Read more