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Historical background related to current issues and/or events.

What matters more, public cohesion or public virtue?

Rush Limbaugh's take on the DNC is that there are no more arrows left in their quiver for fighting to reelect the President in 2012, and the country's progressives are scrambling to protect their turf. I suspect this is particularly true of public and higher education.

Phobic "airs"

The word "phobia" (and its derivatives, such as "phobic") has many uses, from psychological classification to political pejorative. In its proper diagnostic use, it is combined with another Greek term into a compound word, such as arachnophobia (for fear of spiders) or agoraphobia (for fear of crowds - the term "agora" literally means "marketplace"; come to think of it, I suppose most progressives are agoraphobic in this root sense). More recently, the "phobic" part of these terms has been misused, as in the term "homophobic" which refers to someone who disapproves of homosexual behavior, where fear may or may not play a part.

Neither a Hayekian nor a Marxist be...

Ralph E. Ancil (Prof. of Economics at the Franciscan University in Steubenville and President of the Wilhelm Roepke Institute), gave a clear critique of the pure market subjectivism of Friedrich Hayek in "Hayek’s Serfdom: Fifty Years Later." The title of the piece refers, of course, to Hayek's famous (or some would say infamous) The Road to Serfdom which, written while he was in England at the tail end of World War II (1944), is a prophesy of the mess we are in today and will most likely be in tomorrow.

Successful predictions. The stuff of movements for reform.

Way back in the 60s there were two alarmist predictions that were made. There were the predictions of Pope Paul VI about the impact of the contraceptive mentality on the general decline of sexual mores and there were the predictions of Paul Ehrlich about the negative consequences of burgeoning world population. The world, of course, reviled the former and hailed the latter. As far as I can tell, it still does. Whose predictions turned out to be accurate and whose inaccurate? You would think that the accuracy of prediction would have some impact on people's attitudes toward the claims of the predictors, but apparently, for the vast majority of people, it didn't and doesn't.

Their predictions were even issued in the same year, 1968. How's that for a coincidence? How ironic that both have gone by the name of Paul. St. Paul, pray for us!

"Why does the same-sex marriage debate seem so futile?"

Michael Cook has attempted, in a somewhat worthy fashion, to analyze why the contemporary marriage debate has yielded so little understanding. See "Why does the same-sex marriage debate seem so futile?"


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