Greenspan’s Last Day on the Job

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Alan Greenspan will complete his work today as the Federal Reserve Chairman.

If God Is For [the Seahawks], Who Can Be Against [the Seahawks]?

[That’s from the New Revised Substandard Perversion]

Terry Bradshaw, after living a full life, died. When he got to heaven, God was showing him around. They came to a modest little house with a faded Steelers flag in the window. “This house is yours for eternity, Terry.” said God.

“This is very special; not everyone gets a house up here.” Bradshaw felt special, indeed, and walked up to his house. On his way up the porch, he noticed another house just around the corner. It was a 3 story mansion with a blue and white sidewalk, a 50 foot tall flag pole with an enormous SEAHAWKS flag, and in every window a blue Towel.

Bradshaw looked at God and said, “God, I’m not trying to be ungrateful, but I have a question. I was an all-pro quarterback, I hold many NFL records, and I even went to the Hall of Fame.”

God said, “So what’s your point Bradshaw?”

“Well, why does Matt Hasselbeck get a better house than me?”

God chuckled, and said, “Terry, that’s not Matt’s house, it’s mine.”

[from GFBA Jeff]

Timotheos

Define “Religious”

“Americans–at least American Protestants–are not, in fact, very religious. True, the great majority believes in God. Most say that religion is important to their lives. Compared with citizens of other highly industrialized countries, American Protestants go to church with astonishing regularity. Nonetheless, if being religious means an understanding of creed, a confessional loyalty that clearly separates worldly purposes from worship, and a refusal to try to make God’s power ‘relevant,’ then most American Protestants have merely confused the sacred with their well-known devotion to practical results” (R. Laurence Moore in the Foreword of D.G. Hart’s The Lost Soul of American Protestantism [Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2002] ix).

Organ Donation

Do you have an organ donation sticker on your driver’s license? I do not, but I have never really been opposed to someone doing such a thing. This past week, I have had to think more about the issue after reading the following excerpts from books I have read for classes.

First…

“As part of or alongside a Living Will, more and more people are donating their organs after death to be used to benefit the living. This practice may well be encouraged by the pastor” (Norbert H. Mueller and George Kraus eds. Pastoral Theology [St. Louis: Concordia, 1990], 146).

Then…

“The body, as the place of personal presence, has its own integrity, which ought to be respected. Indeed, because we are regarded as stewards rather than owners of our bodily life, the Roman Catholic and Jewish traditions generally forbade self-mutilation. These traditions have become willing to approve the self-giving of organs or tissues for transplantation as long as the donation will not cause grave harm to the donor’s bodily life….In general, therefore, we may regard donation of a kidney or of bone marrow as significantly different from donation of heart, lung, or liver…Yet, a living donor’s gift even of tissue or a paired organ (such as a kidney) should not simply be affirmed as if it were morally uncomplicated. Doctors have in the past been hesitant to transplant kidneys from living, unrelated donors, and it is good that they should be. We should want them to be reluctant to subject a healthy person to the risks of a major operation and the loss of one kidney even if that person is eager to make this bodily gift. It is true, of course, that we ought always be ready to risk harm to ourselves for the sake of others. But it is one thing to aim at my neighbor’s good, knowing that in so doing I may be harmed; it is another to aim at my own harm in order to do good to my neighbor. Thus, even when we approve donation (of, for example, a kidney) from a living donor, we should retain a lively sense of the moral complexity of such an act” (Gilbert Meilaender, Bioethics: A Primer for Christians [Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2005], 88-89).

So what do you think?

“Various Backward Parts of the World”

Ah, that subtle, insidious racism.

Atheism is far from dying. Quite the contrary: If anything, it is bound to grow as the stigma attached to atheism is challenged by scientists, journalists and philosophers [that’s a fine group!]. In the industrialized world the trend has been toward secularism for 250 years, though admittedly it has made no inroads in various backward parts of the world. –Steven Pinker, Science and Theology News (Dec. 2005), p. 12

Fits quite nicely with the name by which atheists prefer to be called: “brights.” By the way, Mr. Pinker, care to define exactly which parts of the world you consider to be “backward”?

Timotheos

Waste of Time

I know this is going to come across as defensive, but take it as annoyance instead. I really dislike drive-by commenting. I repent in dust and ashes if I have ever done it. If you’re going to come by and make strong comments about a post, at least check back to continue the discussion. You can’t make unsupported assertions and not respond when someone has a question about what you’ve said. It’s wasting your time to make the comment, and it wastes the time of those left wondering what the heck you’re talking about. So if you’re too busy to continue the discussion, don’t bother starting one.

Timotheos

I Know Better

“However rude it may be these days to say so, there are some moral truths that we all really know–truths which a normal human being is unable not to know. They are a universal possession, an emblem of rational mind, an heirloom of the family of man. That doesn’t mean that we know them with unfailing perfect clarity, or that we have reasoned out their remotest implications: we don’t, and we haven’t…Yet our common moral knowledge is as real as arithmetic, and probably just as plain. Paradoxically, maddeningly, we appeal to it even to justify wrongdoing; rationalization is the homage paid by sin to guilty knowledge” (J. Budziszewski, What We Can’t Not Know [Dallas: Spence Publishing Company, 2003], 19).

Hemmed and Hawed?

This story reports that President Bush did just that–hemmed and hawed–when asked about the movie, Brokeback Mountain.

I may not be an expert on hemming or hawing, but based on the report, it sounds like Bush simply answered the question…eventually.

Another Poem

Emboldened by the fact that no one said my last one sucked, I give you another.

Kneel

It was silent where I heard you cry
Living out your dual destiny of
Slowly dying in the midst of life
You held out your crooked cup
Half-full of metallic gleam garnered
Like some broken-down beggar who,
Aiming for something greater,
(To be a mendicant monk, perhaps)
Now in blank descendancy
Spilling blood on wrists
Like tattoo on chest
Like fury in my breast
Like some pointless test
I have not studied for this
They did not teach me this
As if nothing had gone awry
In those sleight-of-hand hearts
Those culture shock eyes
Only disbelief and distancing
Without a doubt
Every tongue will kneel
Every knee confess