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Losing

Evangelicals Are Losing the Battle for the Bible. And They’re Just Fine with That. by Jim Hinch.

Evangelical Christianity in America is in the midst of a wholesale generational, cultural, and doctrinal transformation. Confronted by a secularizing and diversifying society, evangelicals are abandoning long-held political allegiances, softening their views on sexuality, grappling with the racial divide in their churches, and rethinking their entire approach to ministry and evangelization. Underlying all of these developments is a more fundamental change in the way evangelicals understand and interpret their most cherished text, the Bible. Though evangelicals proclaim themselves — and are portrayed in most media accounts — to be univocal followers of an inerrant, plainly interpreted Bible, in fact there is widening diversity in their approach to Scripture.

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Drugs

War, on Drugs by Peter Frankopan.

Killing people is hard and horrible. No wonder that warriors, from berserkers to jihadis, need drugs to get in the mood.

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Lack

The Lack of Diversity in Philosophy Is Blocking Its Progress by Peter Levine.

Philosophy is a remarkably un-diverse discipline. Compared with other scholars who read, interpret and assign texts, philosophers in the United States typically choose a much higher percentage of their sources (often, 100 per cent) from Europe and countries settled by Europeans. Philosophy teachers, too, look homogeneous: 86 per cent of new PhD researchers in philosophy are white, and 72 per cent are male. In the whole country, only about 30 African-American women work as philosophy professors.

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Blissfulness

The Strange Blissfulness of Storms by Sarah Scoles.

Is there a biochemical reason that extreme weather makes us happy?

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Renewing

Renewing the University by Alan Jacobs.

For the past several years, American universities have been buzzing with protests and counter-protests, charges and counter-charges. These have centered on a rather small cluster of concepts: safe spaces, the campus as home, microaggressions, and trigger warnings. As I write these words, the fighting seems to have subsided, though I suspect only for a season, as the combatants assess their positions. Perhaps, then, this is a good time to perform our own assessments: to explore the moral network within which these concepts operate, to see what consequences their deployment has had, and to suggest what might be required to restore to campus intellectual life some of the energy that has been sapped by this controversy.

For, whomever or whatever you might blame for the current state of affairs, the recent hostilities have been distinctly unfriendly to the creating and sustaining of intellectual energy. Universities need to get beyond these disputes, at least to some degree, if they are going to retain any meaningful chance to fulfill their social missions.

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Exceptionalism

CRB reviews American Exceptionalism and Civil Religion by John D. Wilsey.

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Fiasco

California Hits the Brakes on High-Speed Rail Fiasco by Virginia Postrel.

California’s high-speed rail project increasingly looks like an expensive social science experiment to test just how long interest groups can keep money flowing to a doomed endeavor before elected officials finally decide to cancel it. What combination of sweet-sounding scenarios, streamlined mockups, ever-changing and mind-numbing technical detail, and audacious spin will keep the dream alive?

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Wrong?

Has Physics Gotten Something Really Important Really Wrong? by Adam Frank.

Sometimes the most important step one can take in science is back.

When the path towards progress in a field becomes muddied, the best response may be to step away from all the technical specifics that make up day-to-day practice and begin pulling up the floorboards. In other words, rather than continuing to push on the science, it may be best to ask about the unspoken philosophies supporting that research effort.

This week, I have the immense privilege of attending a workshop asking about this approach in the storied domains of foundational physics and cosmology.

More at NPR.

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Loser

The weaponised Loser by Stephen T Asma.

Mass shootings have one thing in common: toxic masculinity. Where does it come from and what can be done to stop it?

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Truth

Universities’ War Against Truth by Roger Scruton.

Having beliefs and expressing them is no longer tolerated and the contagion is spreading.

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Perfected

Liberals Shouldn’t Complain About ‘Paranoia And Fear.’ They Perfected It. by David Harsanyi.

No one is innocent when it comes to manipulating voters with emotion.

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Leave

Brexit: Why Britain Voted Leave by Nathan Pinkoski.

Arguments about the UK’s Brexit referendum were framed in terms of the UK’s global economic and political role. But the real issues for Brits were closer to home: whether they trusted their politicians to safeguard their national institutions and whether they believed that the European Union weakened these institutions.

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Aftermath

Brexit’s Complicated Aftermath by Theodore Dalrymple.

What comes next? Nobody really knows.

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Disrespect

Medical Disrespect by Ilana Yurkiewicz.

Bullying doctors are not just unpleasant, they are dangerous. Can we change the culture of intimidation in our hospitals?

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Liberty

CJ reviews Our Republican Constitution: Securing the Liberty and Sovereignty of We the People by Randy Barnett.

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Undercover

Undercover Atheists by Batya Ungar-Sargon.

Seduced by science and rationalism, yet tied to their families and communities, Hasidic atheists opt for a double life.

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Overreach

The Progressive Playbook for Government Overreach by Douglas Holtz-Eakin.

The U.S. has witnessed a daunting explosion of federal regulatory activity during the presidency of Barack Obama. To date, the administration has finalized nearly 28,000 rules. In the process, it generated $800 billion in new burden costs and added more than 509 million new hours of paperwork (at least for those rules that were quantified). Government-wide paperwork hours are now at an all-time high.

The expansion of the size and role of the federal government appears at odds with the long-standing American tradition of relying on the private sector. Even worse, this regulatory apparatus has become counterproductive, as the costs of regulations now outweigh the benefits.

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Walking

The End of Walking by Antonia Malchik.

In Orwellian fashion, Americans have been stripped of the right to walk, challenging their humanity, freedom and health.

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Rites

Matthew J. Franck reviews Taking Rites Seriously: Law, Politics, and the Reasonableness of Faith by Francis J. Beckwith.

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Cult

Gordon Haber reviews The Money Cult: Capitalism, Christianity, and the Unmaking of the American Dream by Chris Lehmann.