Posted by: readerjohn | February 19, 2017

Sunday 2/19/17

Today, Christians who hold to the biblical teaching about sex and marriage have the same status in culture and, increasingly, in law, as racists. The culture war that began with the sexual revolution in the 1960s has now ended in defeat for Christian conservatives. The cultural left—which is to say, the American mainstream—has no intention of living in postwar peace. It is pressing forward with a harsh, relentless occupation, one that is aided by the cluelessness of Christians who don’t understand what’s happening.

We in the American church are facing a time of testing. Our testing may not look like the testing of what the church in China is undergoing, or the church in Nigeria. But it is still a test. This anecdote, which I repeat in The Benedict Option, is more typical:

True story: a couple in suburban Washington, D.C., approached their pastor asking him to help their college student daughter, who felt a calling to be an overseas missionary.

“That’s wonderful!” said the pastor.

“Oh no, you misunderstand,” said the parents. “We want you to help us talk her out of ruining her life.”

Christians like that couple won’t make it through what’s to come. Christians with sacrificial hearts like their daughter’s will. But it’s going to cost them plenty.

When Father Cassian of Norcia told me that Christians who don’t do something like the Benedict Option aren’t going to make it through the time of trial to come, he was talking about just this kind of thing: the soft apostasy of assimilation …

Here in exile in American Babylon, if we are going to retain the vision and build the inner strength to resist assimilation, we are going to have to build the institutions and the practices (that is, ways of life) that prepare us for the world that is and is to come in the next decades. The world of comfortable Christianity is over. Those with eyes to see and ears to hear know that a great flood is coming, indeed is already here, and that it’s time to build our arks.

(Rod Dreher)

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“The truth is that the thing most present to the mind of man is not the economic machinery necessary to his existence; but rather that existence itself; the world which he sees when he wakes every morning and the nature of his general position in it. There is something that is nearer to him than livelihood, and that is life.” (G.K. Chesterton)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.

Posted by: readerjohn | February 18, 2017

Saturday 2/18/17

  1. Conservative ≠ Anti-Liberal
  2. #Proxy #Fail
  3. Donald and the IC
  4. Why are we provoking Russia?
  5. Childhood dreams
  6. Donald and David

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 17, 2017

Friday 2/17/17

  1. Getting Ash Wednesday Wrong
  2. Pop Evangelical Systematic Theology
  3. We probably think his songs are about us
  4. Beware impending actual violence
  5. A dam mess

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 16, 2017

Thursday 2/16/17

  1. Advice for Priests and Pastors
  2. “Anti-Vaxxers”
  3. Snowflakes: They’re not what you think
  4. What’s healthy? Why, sugar, of course.
  5. Fixated on Moscow
  6. Too soft on Trump?

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 15, 2017

Wednesday 2/15/17

  1. Draining the Swamp?
  2. On political blogging on Trump’s Administration
  3. This is conservative?!
  4. Deep state takes a scalp
  5. A narcissism distinction

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 14, 2017

Saint Valentine’s Day

  1. Rhetorical complicity
  2. A better mechanic
  3. Trump’s abolitionist cabinet
  4. Who’s in charge?

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 13, 2017


  1. Hot to deal with Trump’s B.S.
  2. The Wimsey Treatment

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 13, 2017

Stifling the Great Conversation

  1. Stifling the Great Conversation
  2. Threatening a “Right to Exist”?
  3. Quarreling querulously
  4. Toleration
  5. Bad Religion
  6. Net neutrality
  7. Does anyone have what it takes?

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 11, 2017

Saturday 2/11/17

  1. Where’s Dean Acheson when we need him?
  2. “Sound Eisegesis” and the Free Speech Fairness Act
  3. The Central Evil of Torture
  4. What gift for Trump?
  5. Besetting rhetorical sins

Read More…

Posted by: readerjohn | February 10, 2017

Hoist by his own petard

I’m all over the Mad Twitter King, but from concern for the nation. That doesn’t mean that every enemy of his is our friend, though.

There’s a whole lot not to like about the precedent of courts overruling the President on an immigration policy.

I’m sure there’s more to come, including a Pat Buchanan temper tantrum worthy of DT, but the Mad Twitter King’s complete lack of verbal and Twitter self-control will continue to provide a petard whereby to hoist him.


I am now persuaded that the states were the wrong plaintiffs, lacked standing, and that this hasty case reached the wrong conclusion, so far, because of the haste, because the government took a pretty extreme position (virtually that there could never be judicial review of immigration policy) and Trump’s personal offensiveness about banning Muslims and “so-called judge” Tweets.

As The Mad Twitter King might put it, “Everybody messed up this case. President, Platintiffs, Lawyers, Courts! Losers! Sad!”

* * * * *

“The remarks made in this essay do not represent scholarly research. They are intended as topical stimulations for conversation among intelligent and informed people.” (Gerhart Niemeyer)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.

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