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UnMoored

Judicial Tyranny UnMoored by Adam J. MacLeod.

Judge Callie Granade ignored the case in front of her, then decided a hypothetical case involving facts that she made up, many of which directly contradicted the undisputed facts in the actual case before her.

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One

Why Libertarians Believe There Is Only One Right by Roderick T. Long. See here. (Word)

Related: Sheldon Richman comments here.

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Real

Hey Media, ‘Religious Freedom’ Is a Real Thing by David Harsanyi.

Why is it that the media regularly adorns the term “religious freedom” with superfluous quotation marks but not terms like “environmentalist” or “civil rights” or “marriage equality”—or any other of the many debatable issues of American political discourse?

Well, maybe unbiased journalists feel a responsibility to intimate to readers that religious freedom is considered a dubious assertion by one side of the debate. And this would be a reasonable editorial decision if it were employed consistently. It’s not. What’s more likely is that editors and journalists consider the term “religious freedom” dubious because anything that strikes them as “discriminatory” or stands in way of “progressive” moral aims is by default illegitimate.

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How

Collin Garbarino reviews How to Read the Bible and Still Be a Christian by John Dominic Crossan.

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Violence

Philip Jenkins reviews Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Violence by Karen Armstrong.

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Home

Spring Training Brings Americans Home For Baseball by D.C. McAllister.

If you can’t travel to your favorite major-league team’s spring training, capture the feel by attending increasingly popular minor-league games.

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Deism

What Is Deism? by Thomas Kidd.

The claim that any of the Founding Fathers were deists generates pushback among certain conservatives. This helps to account for the firestorm of controversy (which I covered for WORLD Magazine) over David Barton’s The Jefferson Lies and the book’s subsequent abandonment by Thomas Nelson Publishers. Barton argued that until late in life, Jefferson was an orthodox, Trinitarian Christian, but critics showed that Barton neglected evidence from early in life where Jefferson, among other things, denied the Trinity.

When I get questions about deism and the Founders, I quickly point out that we know Ben Franklin was a deist because he called himself a deist. That quiets most potential critics because, after all, we don’t want to argue with the Founders’ own words. (Although I did once have someone insist that Franklin does not, in fact, call himself a deist in his autobiography, but a Christian. Perhaps this was a postmodern interpretation of Franklin’s statement “I soon became a thorough Deist”?)

Part of the problem with calling any of the Founders deists is the difficulty of defining deism. What did that term mean in the eighteenth century? Could you be a deist and somehow believe in prayer, as Franklin apparently did, at least as of the Constitutional Convention? (Franklin made a failed motion for the convention to open its sessions in prayer.) Could you be a deist and say with Jefferson, “I am a real Christian”?

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Betrayal

The ACLU’s Betrayal of Civil Liberties by Carson Holloway.

The ACLU is trying to deprive other organizations of freedoms that it would insist upon for itself. Their work is not a defense of equality—it is an effort to impose a certain view of morality on the country by law.

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Issue

Why God Is a Moral Issue by Michael Ruse.

The New Atheists are not a comfortable group of people. They have scornful contempt for those with whom they differ — that includes religious believers, agnostics and other atheists who don’t share their vehement brand of nonbelief. They are self-confident to a degree that seems designed to irritate. And they have an ignorance of anything beyond their fields to an extent remarkable even in modern academia. They also have a moral passion unknown outside the pages of the Old Testament. For that, we can forgive much.

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AA

The Irrationality of Alcoholics Anonymous by Gabrielle Glaser.

Its faith-based 12-step program dominates treatment in the United States. But researchers have debunked central tenets of AA doctrine and found dozens of other treatments more effective.

More at Atlantic.

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Self-Defeating

Atheists’ Self-Defeating Superiority: Why Joining Forces with Religion Is Best for Non-Believers by Steve Neumann.

Prominent atheists like Bill Maher and Richard Dawkins judge people of faith. Here’s why it’s a recipe for failure.

More at Salon.

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Balance?

Reporters Explain Why Balance Isn’t Needed On Global Warming by Rachelle Peterson.

Elite journalists explain why they have no need for ‘balance’ on the global warming issue. So much for scientific and reportorial inquiry.

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666

666!!: What Should We Make of the Bible’s Scariest Number? by Richard Ostling. See here.

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Scares

What Scares the New Atheists by John Gray.

The vocal fervour of today’s missionary atheism conceals a panic that religion is not only refusing to decline – but in fact flourishing.

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Lost

The Founders Didn’t Fail—We Are Failing The Founders by Ben Weingarten.

If we don’t mobilize to remove politicians who are actively or passively eliminating our form of government, the republic our founders gave us is lost.

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Crisis

God, Reason, and Our Civilizational Crisis by Samuel Gregg.

The way that a culture understands the nature of God shapes its conception of man, reason, and society. Though this presents enormous challenges for the Islamic world, it also has significant implications for the sustainability of Western civilization.

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FCC

The FCC’s New Internet Rules Put the FCC in Charge of the Internet by Peter Suderman.

New net neutrality rules give the agency veto power over ISP innovations.

More at Reason.

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Smear

Anatomy Of A Smear: The Media Vs. Republican Senators On Iran Letter by Mollie Hemingway.

This week, a group of Republican senators led by Tom Cotton of Arkansas issued a very brief open letter to the leaders of Iran explaining the differences between mere executive agreements and international treaties ratified by the Senate. It’s a fairly basic letter that includes reminders about the Constitutional system under which we operate. I couldn’t begin to speculate why, but the media lost their collective minds over this letter. Along with other Democrats and progressive activists. You can read the breathless, outraged, totally-over-the-top headlines if you’d like to see this melt-down in action.

Now, that’s fine. That’s their business. To be completely honest, and not that you care, I’m not the biggest fan of such letters myself. I mean, they’re not as bad as Nancy Pelosi going to Syria to undermine Bush’s foreign policy, Jimmy Carter helping North Korea get nuclear weapons, Ted Kennedy secretly asking the Soviets to interfere in the 1984 election or any of the many other interjections we’ve seen, but I think it’s generally a good idea to yield to the president on foreign negotiations, even if it’s a really bad president who couldn’t negotiate his way out of a paper bag if the stakes involved, oh I don’t know, going ahead with Iran as a nuclear power.

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Matter

Souls Matter by William Carroll.

A materialist philosophy that denies the reality of immaterial features of the world is an impoverished view of nature, including human nature. In any complete analysis of what it means to be a living thing, souls matter. Without souls, there are no living things.

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Exit

Jonathan Merritt interviews Rachel Held Evans about her exit from evangelicalism.