Category: Politics

The Parable of Anthony Weiner’s iPhone

A question that’s been nagging me: Would Anthony Weiner still have a political career if he hadn’t owned an iPhone? Last week Weiner pled guilty to sending sexually explicit messages to a minor through his smartphone. His plea deal comes...

/ May 22, 2017

What Graduation Means

Last spring spent about four hours of a Monday night at a college graduation. My wife was being awarded her degree in elementary education, and she was joined by (according to the college president) 995 other undergraduates. Graduates were welcomed, inducted,...

/ May 20, 2017

Gotta Trust Somebody

My intention with my last post was to make a very small, but very important point. Discernment is not cynicism, and cynicism is not discernment. What passes for critical thinking is often nothing more than a defense mechanism, wired specifically to...

/ May 18, 2017

Being Eaten By Lions on Facebook

What does Proverbs 22:13 have to do with social media and public discourse? The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside! I shall be killed in the streets!” Now, you don’t have to have a Ph.D. in Old Testament to...

/ May 8, 2017

The Outraged Are Always Right

It’s getting really bad out there. Americans, including very intelligent, thoughtful ones, simply cannot abide the mere presence of someone they don’t agree with. How else to explain the spectacle of allegedly reasonable people scurrying to punish The New York...

/ May 2, 2017

The Problem With Social Media Righteousness

If there’s anybody who is writing more incisively about social media culture right now than Freddie deBoer, I don’t know who it is. There are quite a few valuable points in his latest post, but I want to focus on...

/ April 22, 2017

The Death of Expertise

Remember that famous scene in Peter Weir’s “Dead Poets Society,” in which professor Keating (played by Robin Williams) orders his English literature students to tear out the introductory pages of their poetry textbook? Those pages, Keating explains, are the soulless...

/ April 20, 2017

Billy Graham Rules!

Right now the Big Thing On Twitter™ is the “Billy Graham Rule.” A new debate was flared up by news that Vice President Mike Pence practiced his own form of the rule. Some well-followed progressives wasted no time before lambasting...

/ March 30, 2017

If You Like Your Theocracy, You Can Keep Your Theocracy

My issue with pieces like this one comes down to a question of good-faith. In a certain context, given some mutual assumptions and amongst people who share particular convictions, arguing from the New Testament to a certain political program can...

/ March 16, 2017

The Ignore Button

So let’s recap: Milo Yiannopolous’s career thus far consists entirely of a rhetorical con. He insists that he is a champion of free speech and that people only shut him down because they are scared by the correctness of his...

/ February 21, 2017