The internet as god

The internet is everywhere.  It knows everything about you.  It will solve all of our problems.  It will protect us.  The singularity will create a new world.  When we download our consciousness into the web, we will have eternal life.  Doesn’t that sound as if the internet is a god?

Werner Herzog’s documentary film Lo and Behold:  Reveries of the Connected World. explores the religious dimensions of the internet.  Martyn Smith, in a review of the film excerpted after the jump, draws them out. [Read more…]

Voting for a candidate without “supporting” him

Political scientist James Campbell doesn’t like Donald Trump much, but he is still going to vote for him.  He argues that there is a difference between “supporting” a candidate and “voting” for him.  He says that he does not “support” Trump–rather, he will feel free to criticize him and denounce him–and yet he will still vote for him, since the alternative is Hillary Clinton.

What do you think of Campbell’s distinction?  Is he parsing those words too fine?  Isn’t voting for someone a tangible act of support, indeed, the support that really matters?  Or is he providing a helpful way forward for anti-Trump conservatives? [Read more…]

The piety of cosmonauts

Remember when that Russian cosmonaut went up in space and when he came back reported that he didn’t see God?  Things are different now for Russian space travelers. [Read more…]

This incarnate and human God

When we think of God, we often think of Him as a transcendent being, far above and beyond this world.  This would be the case whether we were mystics, Deists, or philosophers.  Or, we might think of Him as a being who dwells within us.  Or as a being who is both transcendent and indwelling.

Certainly, Christianity teaches both the transcendence and the immanence of God.  But this, while true, is not enough, and what Christianity teaches about God goes further:  God is incarnate.

Jesus Christ is God in the flesh, God made tangible, God as a human being, God revealing Himself to us in the only way we can truly understand, God for us.

In one of his most striking passages, Luther warns about trying to contemplate God as an abstraction or in His glory apart from Christ.  If we try to think of God apart from Christ, Luther writes, He will be “intolerable.”  Rather, particularly when we think of our salvation, “We must look at no other God than this incarnate and human God.”

Read what Luther says about this after the jump. [Read more…]

Be the tax shelter

Ireland has a corporate tax rate of 12.5%   The rate in other European states is twice that.  The rate in the United States is the highest in the world at 39%.

Though their rate is already low, the Irish are willing to cut them still lower in individual arrangements to bring industries to their country.  As a result, high-tech companies, including Apple, have opened countless operations in Ireland, and the Irish economy is booming.

The European Union believes Apple’s tax deal with Ireland is unfair.  The supra-national bureaucracy is mandating that Apple pay back taxes to Ireland, money that Ireland denies that it owes.

The United States is supporting the EU against both Apple and Ireland, claiming that Apple is parking its profits in an off-shore tax shelter that is Ireland, and that our government is entitled to its 39% cut.

Kevin Williamson tells the tale and proposes a startling solution:  Why doesn’t the United States cut its exorbitant tax rate so that companies no longer have the incentive to move elsewhere?  Why don’t we cut them below that of the Irish to attract global companies to relocate here, thus bringing in all of that investment and employment?  The United States, he says, should “be the tax shelter.”

Do you see anything wrong with that?
[Read more…]

98% of pregnant women with Zika have healthy babies

Pro-abortionists are using the threat of birth defects from Zika infections to justify abortions, including late-term abortions.  But only 2% of pregnant women with Zika give birth to children with microencephaly.  That is, 98% of pregnant women with Zika give birth to healthy babies. [Read more…]