The Vanishing: Can Faith Fuel the Future?

vienna opera house

Last year I mused over at First Things about Vienna, and how it had seemed, when I visited, to be vasishing before my eyes:A few years ago I had occasion to spend a few days in Vienna. The beautiful city of museums and music remains a favorite but a forlorn one; its charming avenues and architecture and nightly concerts could not fully distract from the sleepy sense of diminishment that hung over the city, like the acquiescence of a cancer patient who has decided to forgo the next round of … [Read more...]

US Economics Headlines, Circa 2005-2006

cbo_chart_1

I happened to be looking for an old post which seems to have been lost in my moves, but while searching I a link to this headline from 2006:U.S. Economy: Growth May Slow From 5.3% Annual Rate (Update4) U.S. economic growth rose at an annual rate of 5.3 percent in the first quarter, slower than forecast and reflecting less momentum in consumer and corporate spending.I read that and thought, imagine what the headlines would read, now, with a Democrat in the White House. I'm pretty sure … [Read more...]

The Primacy and Constancy of Christ-as-Truth – UPDATE

Benedict white

Reading the always-terrific John Allen the other day, I found myself miffed at the notion that some Vatican-watchers think our hard-working Benedict XVI is not engaged enough -- is in fact, a "part-time Pope".At the end of John Paul's reign, Politi writes, the papacy was widely understood to play these unique roles:"Respected interlocutor of the religions of the world, beginning with the other two great monotheisms: Judaism and Islam." "Spokesperson for human rights, beyond … [Read more...]

Kim Jong Il is Dead; New Tyrants Come

While you were sleeping our already-roiling world took another hit to its tenuous stability:North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has died at the age of 69, state-run television has announced.Mr Kim, who has led the communist nation since the death of his father in 1994, died on a train while visiting an area outside the capital, the announcement said.He suffered a stroke in 2008 and was absent from public view for months.Pyongyang described his son Kim Jong-un as the "great successor" … [Read more...]

“But you’re even nice to the dishwasher…”

switchblade

A Bronx mugger steps out of an idea, into wonder:Julio Diaz has a daily routine. Every night, the 31-year-old social worker ends his hour-long subway commute to the Bronx one stop early, just so he can eat at his favorite diner.But one night last month, as Diaz stepped off the No. 6 train and onto a nearly empty platform, his evening took an unexpected turn.He was walking toward the stairs when a teenage boy approached and pulled out a knife."He wants my money, so I just gave him … [Read more...]

The Towers in Korea: What Humanity? – UPDATED

Korea Towers Preview

I saw this yesterday and wondered if it was a hoax:The designers of the towers, Dutch architectural firm MVRDV, have responded to the controversy by quickly publishing an apology in English. “It was not our intention to create an image resembling the attacks,” the designers insist, “nor did we see the resemblance during the design process.”They did not see the resemblance during the design process? The problem with this assertion – apart from its inherent implausibility – is that they hav … [Read more...]

Muppets Mayhem is Misdirection

muppets

Honestly, I haven't been paying much attention.I mean, I love the Muppets but once I stopped having to read bedtime stories in Elmo's voice to the kids, Muppet headlines stopped resonating (although the whole family does very much enjoy rewatching The Muppet Family Christmas Special each year -- a classic, sadly unavailable, anymore).But I'm hearing some suggestions that the new Muppet movie is a covert action by the socialists, hellbent on denigrating capitalism and especially … [Read more...]

Penn State, Paradigms and Poor Me

With all there is to read on the Penn State/Sandusky story, here are two excellent pieces that should rise to the top of the pile:Read Mark Shea on Betrayal and the Power of a Relationship:But though lots of combox warriors are quite adept at fantasizing about how bravely they would have behaved and how vile Mike McQueary is in comparison to their brave selves, how they would have taken a baseball bat to Sandusky had they caught him in flagrante, the reality is that, if the Milgram … [Read more...]

A Collected Angel in Chicago

teen-punch-2

:::WARNING::: Explicit video; can be very upsetting to watch. You're warned.Doubtless many of you have seen this ugly video out of Chicago. Apparently the attack happened last April, but the video is going viral, now.It is shocking, and depressing; in a display of callous disregard for the dignity of another human person, and of his own complete lack of self-respect (not self-esteem, mind you, but self-respect) a young man punches an older man to the ground and then he and his … [Read more...]

Internet Addiction, Spam and Comboxes

someone is wrong

My spam filter currently has 900 spams, and counting, and the situation can't be rectified until Monday.Meanwhile, this weekend is work-packed for me and I'm way too busy this weekend to keep fishing through new spam to find legitimate comments, so I am closing comments through Sunday, and perhaps Monday, depending on whether I get everything done.Besides, the comboxes are routinely unpleasant these days and I'm kind of sick of that.There is a whole combox merry-go-round of sneers … [Read more...]


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