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Monthly Archives: February 2011
Perhaps the most honest, clear, and perceptive take on the international financial crisis to date:
Freud’s Totem and Taboo in a nutshell (and with nuts). Amusing, but perhaps a minute too long.
Willem Buiter is Citgroup’s chief economist, and here’s CNBC today reporting his forecast for the global economy over the next 40 years: “We expect strong growth in the world economy until 2050, with average real GDP growth rates of 4.6 percent … Continue reading
Politico reports this week that, in a recent speech, Rick Santorum, a Republican presidential hopeful, defended the Crusades. Yep, those Crusades. Seriously. Here’s Politico: “The idea that the Crusades and the fight of Christendom against Islam is somehow an aggression on our part … Continue reading
I think that the below dialogue between a Christian and two atheists is informative. How would you answer the atheists’ questions (if you are a religious believer)?
I find the following recent comments of reporter Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times jarring: [I]t is just plain heartbreaking to be in modern, moderate Bahrain today and watch as a critical American ally uses tanks, troops, guns and clubs to … Continue reading
At the New York Times this week, Stanley Fish offers the following as a key distinction between himself and a computer: [I]ts procedures do not track my practice. I am not self-consciously generating a pattern of statistical frequencies. I am … Continue reading
I like the way Tim Lee, a CATO Institute scholar, thinks about undergraduate education: [T]he primary function of an undergraduate education is to allow the student to join a scholarly community, and in the process to soak up the values and attitudes … Continue reading
The poet John Keats famously wrote, at the end of his “Ode on a Grecian Urn”, the following: Beauty is truth, truth beauty—that is all / Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know. I’m not sure this … Continue reading
When Aristotle looked at, say, a tree and asked what caused it, his answer began with matter and form: a tree is a product of the raw matter it is made of (water and wood fibers) channeled through a very particular form … Continue reading
The Los Angeles Times reports that the Repubican Speaker of the House, John Boehner, made the following retort to job losses from recently proposed federal budget cuts: “so be it.” Here’s the Los Angeles Times: House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) dismissed concerns that the spending cuts … Continue reading
Albert Mohler, the man Time magazine once (weirdly) called America’s “reigning intellectual in the evangelical movement”, is a young earth creationist. And in a recent blog post he offered the following complaint against those who have concluded that the earth is old and plants and … Continue reading
I don’t think I could. (Or at least I’d like to think that I couldn’t.) But there are a lot of people who say they believe in hell—that it exists—and yet they are also happy to imagine themselves enjoying heaven. How … Continue reading
At the Christianity Today website recently, a philosopher by the name of Jim Spiegel (who writes well, I must say) makes the following claim: [There are] moral and psychological dimensions to atheism, ones we cannot ignore. No argument there. And Spiegel … Continue reading
At the New York Times this week, Nate Silver lays out some criteria for an educated guess: I estimate that Mr. Carter’s approval rating was 31 percent, and George H.W. Bush’s was 39 percent, at the time of their respective … Continue reading
I thought it might be fun (at least for me) to lay out, in a series of short blog posts, some of the basic terms and ideas that I present to my students when talking about the “close reading” of literary texts. … Continue reading
At Christianity Today this past week, the following explanation was offered by philosopher Jim Spiegel for why atheists are atheists: According to Scripture, the evidence for God is overwhelming. The apostle Paul says that “God has made it plain” that he … Continue reading