Say anything to take us out of this gloom

Here’s Amanda Marcotte on “Why the Iowa Caucus Is About Abortion“: If the Iowa caucus was regarded in the light it deserves — as a reflection of what Christian right extremists are thinking right now, instead of as a predictor of larger trends — it could be incredibly useful. It would be nice, for instance, [Read More…]

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Do you want a big rock or a small rock?

Do you want a big rock or a small rock? You have to pick one or the other. A huge, heavy, substantial, unbreakable hunk of granite? Or a tiny, buoyant, crumbly piece of pumice? Which one do you want? I’m assuming you know what the rock is for. The question would be silly — utterly [Read More…]

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Smart people saying smart things

J.R. Daniel Kirk: “Christmas Contagion“ If an unclean object comes into contact with a clean object, the clean becomes unclean. Uncleanness is more powerful than the cleanness an object might carry around. Priests are holy and eminently clean. But they can’t go into the same room with a dead person: the unclean dead defiles the [Read More…]

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Hoosier lawmaker seeks ‘performance standards’ for national anthem

The Indianapolis Star reports, “New state bill could make it illegal to sing national anthem ‘inappropriately‘”: [State] Sen. Vaneta Becker, R-Evansville, has introduced a bill that would set specific “performance standards” for singing and playing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at any event sponsored by public schools and state universities. The law also would cover private schools [Read More…]

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Upside-down religious liberty in Illinois and Hungary

At Religion Dispatches, Peter Larrman offers a good run-down of the “Top 2011 Religion Stories That Weren’t.” I want to draw your attention especially to No. 6: 6. Upside-Down Ideas about Religious Liberty The dramatic new push for religious liberty exemptions for faith-connected providers of taxpayer-supported health services underscores the radical way in which understandings [Read More…]

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Sunday favorites

Isaiah 55:1-5 Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and you that have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labour for that which does not satisfy? Listen carefully to me, [Read More…]

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Happy New Year

Best wishes to you all for 2012. May grace, peace, joy, love, hope, healing and happy surprises be yours in the year ahead. And jobs all around for those who need them. I should probably say first that the kind of hope I often think about (especially in situations that are particularly hopeless, such as [Read More…]

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A Saturday story

I’m not sure if this will work, but it might be fun to try. We’re going to tell a story. I’ll start, then we’ll take turns continuing from there in comments. Whoever goes next adds a sentence or two and together we’ll find out where the story goes from there. (I’m told this is actually [Read More…]

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