A Second Look at “First Things”

That is the title of my recent entry over at The Catholic Thing. It is adapted from a portion of a paper I delivered on May 17, 2011 at Princeton University as part of panel celebrating the 25th anniversary of the publication of Hadley Arkes’ First Things: An Inquiry Into the First Principles of Morals and Justice (PrincetonUniversity Press, 1986). Here's how it begins: Most books and articles in political and legal philosophy are dry. One rarely finds in them humorous anecdotes, memorable … [Read more...]

Happy 81st Birthday to my Dad!

Today, May 25, 2011, my father, Harold J. Beckwith, turns 81!  To the right is a picture of my Dad, me, and my brother Jim in front of our Mercedes Benz with Caesar's Palace in the background.  We were at Caesar's having lunch following my First Holy Communion in May 1968. At the bottom left is a picture of me, my wife, Frankie, and my parents last November in Las Vegas.  Here is what I say about my father in Return to Rome: Confessions of An Evangelical Catholic: We lived pretty standard … [Read more...]

Baylor’s Class of 2011 includes one of Texas’ smallest surviving preemies

From the Baylor website: Another 2,000 graduates joined the ever-growing family of Baylor alumni over the weekend, as the Class of 2011 received their diplomas during commencement ceremonies at the Ferrell Center. (Click here for a slideshow of the weekend.) Among the graduates was Allyson Ray, a name that just might ring a bell way back in the memory of some Central Texans. Ray made headlines back in 1989 when she became the smallest baby in Texas ever to survive; born at just 14 ounces and … [Read more...]

My top 20 Bob Dylan songs. Today: 4 through 1 – (Dylan turns 70)

On May 24, 2011, Bob Dylan turns 70. Between May 20 and today, May 24, I am posting my top 20 songs composed by Dylan. Here are the previous installments: 20 through 17 (May 20), 16 through 13 (May 21), 12 through 9 (May 22) and 8 through 5 (May 23) By limiting myself to only 20 Dylan songs, I have, of course, left off many classics including "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right," "Just Like a Woman," "The Lonesome Death of Poor Hattie Carroll," "Gotta Serve Somebody," "Masters of War," "Love … [Read more...]

My top 20 Bob Dylan songs. Today: 8 through 5 – (Dylan turns 70)

On May 24, 2011, Bob Dylan turns 70. Between May 20 and May 24, I am posting my top 20 songs composed by Dylan. Here are the previous installments:20-17 (May 20), 16-13 (May 21), and 12-9 (May 22). For today, May 23, I present 8 through 5 8. It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding) (1965) 7. Precious Angel (1979) 6. Idiot Wind (1975) 5. Visions of Johanna (1966) What follows is a video of each as well as lyrics.... … [Read more...]

Bob Dylan at 70- My top 20 Dylan songs. Today: 12 through 9

On May 24, 2011, Bob Dylan turns 70. Between May 20 and May 24, I am posting my top 20 songs composed by Dylan. Here are the previous installments: 20-17 (May 20) and 16-13 (May 21). For today, May 22, I present 12 through 9: 12. A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall (1963) 11. Tangled Up in Blue (1974) 10. Desolation Row (1965) 9. Blowin’ in the Wind (1963) What follows is a video of each as well as lyrics.... … [Read more...]

Bob Dylan at 70- My top 20 Dylan songs. Today: 16-13

On May 24, 2011, Bob Dylan turns 70. Between May 20 and May 24, I will post my top 20 songs composed by Dylan. Yesterday, I posted 20-17. Today, it's 16-13: 16. Jokerman (1983) 15. Pressing On (1980) 14. Chimes of Freedom (1964) 13. Times They Are A-Changin’ (1964) What follows is a video of each as well as lyrics.... … [Read more...]

Bob Dylan at 70- My top 20 Dylan songs. Today: 20-17

On May 24, 2011, Bob Dylan turns 70. Over the next 5 days, I will post my top 20 songs composed by Dylan, starting today with 20, 19, 18, and 17: 20. Every Grain of Sand (1981) 19. It Aint Me, Babe (1964) 18. Gates of Eden (1965) 17. Mississippi (2001) What follows is a video of each as well as lyrics.... … [Read more...]

Roger Olson has moved to Patheos

A hearty Patheos welcome to my Baylor colleague, Roger Olson. Roger is a professor of theology in Baylor's Truett Theological Seminary. You can find his new Patheos blog here. His blog is called: Roger Olson, My evangelical Arminian theological musings. … [Read more...]

From tomorrow’s New York Times: Intelligent Design Debate Ensnares the Journal “Synthese”

That is the title of an article that will be published in tomorrow's New York Times (14 March 2011). Authored by Mark Oppenheimer, here's how it begins: According to one cynical view, academic disputes are so vicious only because the stakes are so low. Yet as the editors of Synthese, a leading philosophy journal, can tell you, what they publish matters: in debates over Christianity, the teaching of evolution, and American politics. This story began in March 2009, when a special issue of Synthese … [Read more...]


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